Square of the Three Cultures

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One of Mexico City’s most historic neighborhoods—a once-independent city-state politically joined to the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan—Tlatelolco is a fascinating side trip few tourists make. At center lies the district’s so-called Plaza of Three Cultures, where a colossal public housing development (of revitalized interest to architecture buffs) surrounds a 16th-century Spanish church (notably embellished with an unusual altar and stained-glass windows by 20th-century artist and architect Mathias Goeritz) as well as the ruins of pre-Hispanic Tlatelolco pyramids and other structures. In addition to being the exact spot on which the Aztec Empire fell, the plaza was also the site where Mexican armed forces perpetrated a bloody 1968 massacre of university students and political activists. Tragedy aside, the area is still home to thousands of hard-working, everyday Joes, and the community garden, known as the huerto, is pure charm and down-home bucolic, well worth a pop-in.
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Lázaro Cárdenas, Tlatelolco, 06900 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
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