16th-Century Community Chapels

The Tarascan Plateau is home to churches and chapels from the 16th century that were created by indigenous artists who turned their interpretations of sacred texts into gorgeous, colorful coffered ceilings. Many of them are dedicated to Saint James, such as the ones in Charapan and Nurío. A tour of the religious architecture from the first part of the colonial period in the towns of Aranza, Ahuirán, Nurío, and Pomacuarán illustrates the combination of European architectural expertise with local knowledge of building materials to create these works of sacred art. Zacán and Cocucho hold other chapels with great architectural value, but the chapel of Tupátaro deserves a special mention. Set in the Purépecha zone of the lake region, it is known far and wide as the Sistine Chapel of the Americas.





Plaza Municipal, Centro, Paracho, Mich., México

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