Perhaps the best known and most important construction in Querétaro city is the Aqueduct. Completed in 1735, this work of engineering provided water to much of the state capital for many years.
This impressive construction is 1,280 m long and has an exact maximum height of 28.42 m, with 74 stone arches. Responsibility for constructing this icon is attributed to the Marqués de la Villa del Villar del Águila. This important benefactor from Querétaro, whose name was Juan Antonio de Urrutia y Arana, and who is reported to have built and paid for this work at the request of a Capuchin nun, Sor Marcela of the convent if San José de García, with whom he was in love and for whom he built the Casa de la Marquesa building, today a luxury hotel in the old town.
Address: Calzada de los Arcos, zona centro.
The Old Town of Querétaro boasts monuments, mansion houses, squares and gardens that have earned the place a World Heritage designation. The impressive 17th and 18th-century Baroque and Neoclassical architecture makes for a fine example of a colonial Spanish city and has been the backdrop to a fascinating history.
If a stroll is what you are looking for, in the old town you can admire many museums, galleries, designer shops, restaurants with local and international food, bars, theatres and a cultural life that can be appreciated everywhere you look. Visiting the main parks and squares at the weekend, it is not a surprise to come across an orchestra, or dance or street theatre show. See the calendar of events and find out what’s on.
Address: Centro Histórico, Santiago de Querétaro
PLAZA DE ARMAS
Located in the heart of the Old Town, this plaza is perhaps one of the most famous in the country. On the north is the impressive façade of what was once the Casa de la Corregidora, and today a state government building, and around there are beautiful buildings from the colonial period.
At the centre of this square is a striking fountain with a sculpture of the Marqués de la Villa del Villar del Águila, Juan Antonio de Urrutia y Arana, who was one of Querétaro’s main benefactors.
Today you can enjoy any of the restaurants and cafés around the square, where you can watch the comings and goings of the people in this area of the city.
Originally, the Jardín Guerrero was part of the Convent of Santa Clara, until 1923, when it was converted into a garden. Later, an attractive fountain was built here, one that has had its appearance changed several times over the last century.
Today the garden is one of the Old Town’s main attractions. This beautiful spot, an important meeting place, is also a venue for cultural events.
Address: • Location: Guerrero S/N , esquina con Madero, Col. Centro.
Located in the former convent of San Agustín is one of Querétaro’s most important cultural sites, the Art Museum, also known as “The building that sings”.
Founded on 22 September 1988, this exquisite building, in the Baroque style, is considered to be one of the most beautiful in all Mexico, and is currently part of the Instituto Queretano de la Cultura y las Artes.
Colonial building located in the former convent of San Francisco. It occupies an important position in Mexico’s cultural history, since this institution has been sponsoring culture for many years.
The building was constructed in the 16th century, and since 1936 the museum has played an important role within the beautiful city of Querétaro, since from here the state’s culture, art and history have been promoted through various galleries with important collections and archaeological, colonial and contemporary pieces.
TEATRO DE LA REPÚBLICA
Inaugurated in 1852, with the name Teatro Iturbide, this theatre has been the site of important events in the history of the country: in 1854 the Mexican National Anthem was sung for the first time; in 1867, Maximilian I was sentenced; and on 5 February 1917, the Constituent Congress set up the Political Constitution of Mexico.
CASA DE LA CORREGIDORA
This remarkable building on the Plaza de Armas square was built in the late 18th century to act as the residence and offices of the corregidores of Querétaro.
Since 1981 it has been the Palacio de Gobierno, seat of the Executive Government of the State of Querétaro. The history of this grand building is linked to the independence movement; it was here that the “literary meetings” presided over by the corregidora Doña Josefa Ortiz de Domínguez and which gave rise to Independence, were held.
CERRO DE LAS CAMPANAS
This famous place, the “Hill of the Bells”, located outside the Old Town, is home to the Cerro de las Campanas Museum, the Chapel of Maximilian and the Benito Juárez Monument. It is officially a National Park and its name comes from stones on this hill, which when struck, ring like bells.
The Cerro de las Campanas was also the site of the end of the fight between the Empire and the Republic, since it was here that Maximilian of Habsburg, Miguel Miramón and Tomás Mejía were executed in 1867.
Close to the Old Town is this industrial site, which today is making the most of its long-standing prominence. This old textile factory is now the Hércules brewery, and a cultural and gastronomic complex, complete with attractions for all.