There are many reasons why Tepoztlan is a captivating place. It is one of the most prominent places in the state of Morelos. It is also next to my hometown, Cuernavaca. Firstly, one must consider its location at the foot of impressive mountains, shining like the sun. With almost no network signal, you are in for a real immersion trip into Mexican culture.
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Before we start, here are some tips that might help you get the most out of Tepoztlan:
- Bring comfortable shoes: The streets are for walking only, and cars are banned in many of the streets in the downtown area. Also, if you are hiking the hill, better be good shoes!
- Start with an empty stomach: There’s so much to eat and drink around, that you won’t need any prior snack.
- Keep an open mind: Everything in Tepoztlan is mysticism and magic. Prepare to take in ancient traditions and strange beliefs!
History & Wealth
Without a doubt, the main attraction of Tepoztlan, is the Cerro del Tepozteco, a pyramid on top of a hill, which you can hike to the top, and then climb up the monument, the pre-Hispanic ruins that crown its summit. Otherwise, Tepoztlan is an inexhaustible wealth of attractions to absorb Mexican culture to the max.
The myths, art, and historical references are related to its people. They say it was in Tepoztlan where the great Quetzalcoatl was born. Considered “The Feathered Snake”, represents the duality inherent in the human condition. The “snake” is physical body with its limitations and “feathers” are the spiritual principles.. As a vestige of their noble indigenous past, lay the remains of Xochimilca temple dedicated to the god of pulque, Ometochtli-Tepoztécatl, and that appears at the top of Tepozteco hills.
The magic of Tepoztlan
The Tepoztecan culture itself, is an irresistible for those visiting. Music, carnivals and AMAZING food are what makes this town special.
A must see is the market, with it’s colors, flavors and tastes, that will give you paradise, like the Pineaple water, coconut water and quesadillas. Or they might give you the creeps too, with the edible grasshoppers! 😯
Art in Church
A must see is the Mural made of seeds at the door oa Muralple, which is changed by season, and always expresses the greatness of the ancient Mexican culture.
But it is also essential to see the temple and former Dominican convent of the Nativity from the XVI Century, as well as the many chapels neighborhood, which are scattered on its quiet streets.
Creepy fact: They say nuns used to get pregnant from the pastors and fathers. They killed (or aborted) their babies and buried them below the gardens of the convent. Human remains have been found there!
Arts and crafts are mostly what you can find. If you are looking for a great deal and amazing quality, roam the streets. You will find clothes, minerals, magic quartz and aura and tarot readings!
At the beginning of each year, Tepoztlanmdresses up because spectacular and colorful carnivals take place. There are also carnivals in other cities in the state. But Tepoztlan carnival is by far the biggest.
Morelos’ Carnivals are so popular, cheerful and colorful, people from various parts of the country and the world come to celebrate. There is a lot of dancing, drinking (YES, A LOT), and food.
Of course, the indispensable element for these carnivals is the traditional and emerging “Chinelos” (traditional dancers of the state of Morelos) to jump and dance with joy. It is so contagious, children, and adults of all ages rise to join the Chinelos!
If you want to see the video of the dance of Chinelos, Click here. And YESS!! I can dance this, I’m just shy! hahaha
Day of the Dead
Day of the Dead in Tepoztlan expresses the exquisite ancient traditions of Mexicans.
In churches, offerings are decorated with figures of skulls and flowers. Traders offer their products to beautify the offerings: flowers, bread, utensils of clay, wax, incense, copal, fruits, etc.
People clean cemeteries and arrange the offering placed in honor of those who already are no longer here. At night, children and adults walk the streets shouting “Alms for my skull,” asking house sweet home, fruits, etc. in their skull-shaped recipient.
All this has earned Tepoztlan the name of one of the most precious destinations. Thousands of visitors from all over the world come, attracted by the charming blend of contemporary and ancient, pre-Hispanic and colonial, rustic and modern… All the traditional and the alternative, which defines Tepoztlan and its magic.