Tlacotalpan Santuario de la Candelaria

Tlacotalpan Day Trip from Veracruz: Is it Worth it?

In City Guides, Mexico by Erik @ DIY Travel HQ1 Comment

A Tlacotalpan Day Trip from Veracruz takes 2 hours by bus each way – it’s a colourful Pueblo Magico & UNESCO World Heritage City, but is it worth the trip?

We here at DIY Travel HQ have come to expect less from Mexico’s 111 Pueblo Magico destinations and  rely more on UNESCO status to solidify a potential visit.

However, after visiting Tlacotalpan that qualifier is now in question.

There is little more to explore than the central plaza. I’ll admit, the vacant white-washed zocalo is different than most other Mexican villages, but not earth shattering.

The bus drops you off several blocks from Parque Zaragoza, and it is an easy stroll along river-lined restaurants to the center.

Those wishing to explore the area by water may do so on a chartered boat.

Tlacotalpan Riverfront

Despite looking like it, this isn’t Southeast Asian’s Golden Triangle.

Everyone else is greeted by a salsa dancing duo.

Welcome to Tlacotalpan


Tucked behind the visible buildings and outdoor gym, is the zocalo.

Dual pastel colored churches mark the adjacent corners of Parque Zaragoza.

The center of the square contains a centrally located gazebo, palm trees, and benches.

Tlacotalpan Parque Zaragoza Gazebo

Parque Zaragoza

During the week, Tlacotalpan is a ghost town.

For this reason, it is better to visit during the weekend when it is livelier, and has a better ambiance.

The busiest time to stay is during the Candelaria festival, which features bull running down the streets.

Santuario de la Candelaria church is located on the northeast corner of Parque Zaragoza. 

Tlacotalpan Santuario de la Candelaria

Santuario de la Candelaria

The interior matches the peach exterior, and is the most ornate church.

Tlacotalpan Santuario de la Candelaria Interior

Santuario de la Candelaria Interior

It also borders Parque Hidalgo honoring the man himself with a prestigious monument.

Tlacotalpan Parque Hidalgo

Parque Hidalgo

The other church surrounding the zocalo is Iglesia San Cristobal, and is more simplistic.

Tlacotalpan Iglesia San Cristobal

Pastel colored Iglesia San Cristobal

Inside they really stress, “You do not need your cell phone to talk with God”.

I guess not since he never calls me on my cell phone…

Tlacotalpan Iglesia San Cristobal Calling God

Pass me the phone if God answers.

The remainder of the town is a series of brightly colored houses that run more or less in a grid structure.

Along the way are colonial houses converted into shops, restaurants, and the odd museum.

Tlacotalpan Business

One of the many converted houses downtown.

Tlacotalpan was awarded its UNESCO status for maintaining this architecture and ambiance from when it was a major river town.

Tlacotalpan Colorful Colonial Architecture

Colorful colonial architecture

Tlacotalpan Day Trip from Veracruz: Transportation

This pastel wonderland is easily reached from Veracruz’s ADO bus terminal.

TRV runs hourly shuttles for 84 pesos / $4.50, and takes roughly two hours each direction.

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***The Final Word: Tlacotalpan should not make it onto your itinerary. Transportation takes at least four hours, and the town only warrants 1-2 hours so the return of investment is minimal ***

Do you think a Tlacotalpan Day Trip from Veracruz is worth the time?

4 Shovels

Super easy DIY travel around city centres

Visited in April 2016


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