Travel & Culture
Cuetzalan del Progreso was founded in the 1800s in the Northern Sierra. It is located approximately 183 kilometers from the City of Puebla in Mexico. This “Pueblo Mágico,” is an enchanting tourist destination for those wishing to disconnect from their busy lifestyle. This town is a cultural jewel for those who get inspired by local culture in all its facets.
I visited Cuetzalan about 10 years ago and recently, in the midst of the pandemic, I visited again. My admiration for Cuetzalan and its people has grown. Cuetzalan is older, wiser, and better.
Observing the town’s architecture, it can be deduced Cuetzalan was a very important city and one with abundant economy. The buildings are gorgeous and so are the “callejones empedrados.” As it probably happened in other centuries, commerce is one of the main activities and one that gives Cuetzalan a level of vibrancy.
When one looks at the surrounding “cerros” (hills) full of luscious greens, agricultural fields and diverse fauna, one must agree that Cuetzalan truly is a magical town.
There is culture, tradition and a certain energy that moves and flows while people walk, buy, sell, talk, engage and return home.
Here are 5 reasons why I recommend Cuetzalan as a magical destination:
- The Waterfalls
- Local drinks made with fruits, herbs, aguardiente, and coffee.
- Plenty of streets and callejones to walk and wander around
- Coffee and Cafetales
- Open Spaces: Restaurante La Buena Vida
One special fact to know about Cuetzalan: The majority of its population and those living in the surrounding areas are from indigenous descent, many of them speak Nahuatl, and most of them prefer dressing traditionally. You’ll see men going throughout their daily routine wearing manta pants and shirts, and women wearing embroiled skirts and blouses, adorned with rebozos and colorful neckless.
There is plenty more to see and experience in this Pueblo Mágico. I hope you have enjoyed learning about the places and activities mentioned above. One last thing: If or when you go, make sure to buy crafts/artesanías from street vendors, that would be one way to honor their communities and land, and support their efforts to make a living.