Churches and Chapels
The Plaza de Armas and the Cathedral both make great starting points getting into the state capital’s elegant state of mind. When starting from Plaza de Armas, head to Templo y Exconvento de San Francisco. Founded in 1540, this church and monastery were the first religious buildings established in the city of Querétaro. The magnificent baroque church is also the tallest building in Querétaro’s Historic Center, and is often mistaken for the state cathedral for that same reason. The former monastery now houses the regional museum.
Continuing on, you’ve got the Templo de San Antonio de Padua, a church founded in 1613 by monks of the Dieguino religious order. Inside, it contains spectacular 18th-century pipe organs, one of which is used in the sacred music concerts held inside the church. Heading out toward the aqueduct the Franciscan Templo y Convento de la Santa Cruz sits atop Sangremal Hill.
When starting from the Cathedral, first take the time to look inside. In the era of Mexican Independence, this church was known as Oratorio de San Felipe Neri. The interior is adorned with renowned paintings and sculptures–most notably those by Oaxacan artist Miguel Cabrera. Walk down Pino Suárez Street and you’ll come to Templo de Santo Domingo. Its atrial cross remains intact and features reliefs symbolizing the Passion and Death of Christ.
The Santa Rosa de Viterbo building deserves special attention as an example of the maximum expression of baroque style in Querétaro. It boasts lofty pinnacles and a tower with a spire of Moorish inspiration. The interior is decked out with five, gold-coated baroque altarpieces, an ivory, silver, and tortoise shell-incrusted pulpit, and an Ignacio Mariano de las Casas organ.
The Real Convento de Santa Clara de Jesús is yet another of the city’s baroque wonders. Six gold altarpieces adorn the inside of this monastery. There’s one featuring the Virgin of Guadalupe that was painted by the master Miguel Cabrera.
Plaza de Armas, Centro, Santiago de Querétaro, Qro., MéxicoSee map