Top 10 Things to do in Patzcuaro, Mexico

February 28, 2018 Rosalyn Ihle

Pátzcuaro ( ˈpatskwaɾo (help·info)) is a large town and municipality located in the state of Michoacán. The town was founded sometime in the 1320s, at first becoming the capital of the Tarascan state and later its ceremonial center. After the Spanish took over, Vasco de Quiroga worked to make Pátzcuaro the capital of the New Spain province of Michoacán, but after his death, the capital would be moved to nearby Valladolid (today Morelia). Pátzcuaro has retained its colonial and indigenous character since then, and has been named both a "Pueblo Mágico" and one of the 100 Historic World Treasure Cities by the United Nations. Pátzcuaro and the lake region it belongs to is well known as a site for Day of the Dead celebrations.
Restaurants in Patzcuaro

1. Plaza Vasco de Quiroga

Centro, Patzcuaro 61600, Mexico
Excellent
74%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 412 reviews

Plaza Vasco de Quiroga

The larger of the two major downtown plazas in Patzcuaro.

Reviewed By Randy S - Portland, Oregon

The square is a magnet for everybody in town. We were there over Christmas and it was packed with giant straw figures of regions in Michoacan. Lots of vendors, kids, music, and families promenading in the evening. Best spot in town to experience small town Mexican culture. We loved it and the people of Mexico!

2. Church of Our Virgin of Health (Basilica de Nuestra Senora de la Salud)

Patzcuaro, Patzcuaro, Mexico
Excellent
67%
Good
32%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 140 reviews

Church of Our Virgin of Health (Basilica de Nuestra Senora de la Salud)

This church in Patzcuaro contains many interesting religious icons, including the Virgin of Health, who is alleged to have powerful healing abilities.

Reviewed By marcopolo111 - Cleveland, Oh

This is a church on a plateau two blocks from the main square. The church is relatively simple on the outside and more ornate on the inside and houses frequently religious activities. Interesting is also the ground outside the church, with many vendors of textile, shoes and ceramics. There are also many open kitchen selling outstanding michoacan street food.

3. Santa Clara del Cobre

Patzcuaro 61800, Mexico
Excellent
59%
Good
32%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 287 reviews

Santa Clara del Cobre

Town known for its copper craftsmanship.

Reviewed By Randy S - Portland, Oregon

We were here on Christmas Day, and it was wonderful! On their main Square nearly a hundred little kids were dressed in identical costumes doing traditional dances to a packed audience. The town specializes in Copper and we bought a bowl at near giveaway prices! The whole town is packed with Artisan producers and we enjoyed it tremendously. I would guess that Saturday and Sunday is the best time to visit.

4. House of Eleven Patios (Casa de los Once Patios)

Madrigal de las Altas Torres, Patzcuaro, Mexico 434342753
Excellent
58%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
10%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 298 reviews

House of Eleven Patios (Casa de los Once Patios)

This former convent is now the best place in town to shop for arts and crafts from a slew of various vendors.

Reviewed By DallasAlice51 - Dallas, Texas

Located near the Plaza Grande, Once Patios is an open air maze of interesting shops built around courtyards and on multi levels. In many you will see artisans at work.
It's a delightful way to procure nice gifts/souvenirs and work up a margarita thirst in the process!

5. Isla Janitzio

Patzcuaro, Mexico
Excellent
34%
Good
32%
Satisfactory
19%
Poor
7%
Terrible
8%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 505 reviews

Isla Janitzio

This tiny island is inhabited solely by indigenous people, but is popular among tourists hoping for a glimpse of native culture.

Reviewed By Zbjhnstn - Paris, France

Do it! Take the boat to the island and wander the small streets - you can't get lost - and the beauty everywhere from the lake vistas to the small shops offering hand made artifacts made on the island as well as beautiful local embroideries.

6. The Stirrup Volcano (Volcan del Estribo Grande)

Patzcuaro, Patzcuaro, Mexico
Excellent
58%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 33 reviews

The Stirrup Volcano (Volcan del Estribo Grande)

Located just outside of town, this small volcano provides excellent views of Patzcuaro.

Reviewed By PSG104 - San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

I love Patzcuaro but needed a 'country' fix and this did it. The other reviews are right just follow Ponce de Leon (runs next to the main Plaza) and it will cross the highway. Take any road that goes 'up' and it will the the right one. You can ask people on the way just to confirm. You will pass through lovely and interesting village areas then the cobblestone road is lined only with trees and pastures. I found it easier to take the dirt path running parallel to the road. It ranges from 5-15' away from the road but you are always in sight of it.
Obviously the earlier you go the cooler it is and you will see walkers, runners and cyclists. I (solo woman) went alone and it was comforting to see the odd sports fiend up there with me.
It was a really lovely trek. I even took the stairs. You will see them behind the pavilion. You will huff and puff but it is so worth it at the top!
Even better views and a wonderful sense of accomplishment1

7. Mezcaleria El Carajo

Calle Arciga 3, Patzcuaro 61600, Mexico
Excellent
89%
Good
11%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 17 reviews

Mezcaleria El Carajo

Reviewed By Rockabel - California

This is where I began to truly love Mezcal. They have an excellent location near the big Cathedral and they have a lot of rare and interesting Mezcals to try. Arturo and Omar were excellent hosts and spoke good English. Adalberto Who is the owner, is a very interesting man with lots of great stories. He speaks great English and has traveled all over the world. It's worth it to go to this place just for hanging out with him and hearing his stories! If you haven't had really good Mezcal yet or you just want a fun evening with some nice interesting people, I highly recommend this place.

8. La Biblioteca Publica Gertrudis Bocanegra

Plaza Gertrudis Bocanegra, Patzcuaro, Mexico +52 434 342 5441
Excellent
87%
Good
9%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 22 reviews

La Biblioteca Publica Gertrudis Bocanegra

Reviewed By Sandy S - Albuquerque, New Mexico

Conveniently, the bus from Morelia stopped not ten yards from the Biblioteca de Gertrudis Bocanegra, which was sparse on books but offered numerous angles from which to view the famous mural by Juan O’Gorman. Painted in 1941, it pictures the history of the Purépecha people from pre-Hispanic days through the cruel oppression by gold-greedy conquistadores through the humanistic reforms instituted by Vasco de Quiroga and down to (what was then) the present day. Gertrudis Bocanegra, martyred heroine of the 1820 war of independence, appears in the bottom center, her white dress smeared with blood from her execution by firing squad. Small images of O’Gorman and his wife appear to the lower left. This was the second time I’d seen this mural, and I was struck once gain by how much I liked it, both because of the content and color and because I’m fond of what I think of as “post office art.”

9. Templo de la Compania de Jesus

Alcantarilla | Lerin, Patzcuaro 61608, Mexico +52 434 342 1979
Excellent
60%
Good
31%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 22 reviews

Templo de la Compania de Jesus

Reviewed By Androsch H - Metepec, Mexico

Imagine yourself walking along walls and floors where people already used to pray, celebrate mess, weddings, baptisms in the 16th or 17th century. Do I need to say more?
This old are the origins of this building which used to be the first Cathedral in Patzcuaro.
Enjoy

10. Centro de Interpretacion Ruta Don Vasco

Calzada Pedro Ibarra # 1 | Col Revolucion, Patzcuaro 61609, Mexico +52 434 117 8862
Excellent
92%
Good
8%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 12 reviews

Centro de Interpretacion Ruta Don Vasco

Reviewed By Patricia C - Albuquerque

I was absolutely impressed by que high quality of this museum. It gives a historic summary of the Ruta Don Vasco. You experience art, language, food, traditions and when you leave you know exactly what Michoacan is all about and were to visit.

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