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El Oro + Tlalpujahua
Images of El Oro + Tlalpujahua / Other places of the surroundings of Mexico City



Located in the bordering area of the States of Mexico and Michoacán, the brother towns of El Oro and Tlalpujahua share a common history as they are both linked to an area that constituted one of the richest mining provinces of Northamerica at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th Century.

This area of temperate woods and mountains was inhabited by the indigenous mazahuas during the prehispanic era. Decades after the Spanish conquest, the first churches were built in 1551 in what would later become the village of Tlalpujahua.

The region had a slow development until the end of the 18th Century when important mining areas were discovered which attracted a great number of new inhabitants to the area in search of the precious metal. It was in this time that the temples of Tlalpujahua were elegantly decorated and the town of El Oro was founded in 1772.  

During the 20th Century, these towns flourished and were rapidly declared municipal heads of their respective localities, motivating the development of most of the civil, cultural and governmental infrastructure in the area.

With time, the precious mineral began to be scarce in the area, fact that motivated a massive exodus of the population which practically abandoned the towns, situation which only worsened in 1937 with the expropriation of the mines that until then were in English hands. After the prosperous years of the region came to an end, a new diversification of the economic activities of the area took place; it’s now characterized by its tree-felling, work in stone and more recently tourism, motivated by the beauty of the towns’ landscapes and architecture. 

El Oro is characterized by its architecture which mixes traditional elements of the region with others of European origin, as a response to the influence that foreign immigrants had in the area. In this town the eclectic styled Governmental Palace stands out as does the Municipal Theatre. Other attractive sites are the chapels of the Magdalene and of Santiago Oxtempan.

Meanwhile, Tlalpujahua is characterized by its native architecture which grants this town a beautiful traditional atmosphere that lingers along alleyways, plazas and stone temples, which constitute an authentic jewel yet to be discovered. The Main Plaza and the Nuestra Señora del Carmen Sanctuary, a fantastic example of late Mexican baroque style, stand out.

The Brockman Dam is located between both towns; it’s an attractive body of water in which people can fish for trout or can simply take a stroll around it, like a stroll through the history and nature of the area. It’s a two-hour drive from Mexico City.
  Mexico, D.F. 2008. All rights reserved.