The first evangelizers of the Don Vasco Route

Tzintzuntzan

Faith and history

Don Vasco de Quiroga arrived in Tzintzuntzan, then the capital of the Purépecha dominion, to pacify and evangelize the region. The Franciscans were sent to this magical town, where they set up the first mission church in Michoacán, the convento de Santa Ana. This is the oldest monastery on the Don Vasco Route.

33 centuries-old olive trees, which Don Vasco planted, provide shade for the large atrium of the monastery complex, one for each year of Christ’s life. The atrium is popular among Tzintzuntan residents, as well as visitors, for taking a stroll and enjoying the shade of the trees.

On the convent facade, an arch dating from 1534 indicates where Don Vasco celebrated the first mass. The monastery now houses the Community Museum of Tzintzuntzan, where you will be received by Fray Jacobo Dacian, a Danish prince before he joined the Church. The exhibition includes pre-Hispanic and colonial halls, with intriguing items such as an articulated processional Christ. A traditional kitchen has been recreated and many of the frescoes adorning the walls have been restored. Next to the monastery stands the Temple of San Francisco where a magnificent oil painting of The Lord of the Rescue is kept.

On the right, at an angle to the monastery, stands the Temple of Solitude, where the Lord of the Holy Burial is worshipped. To one side, a door leads to the old hospital and the rear atrium where a wonderful open chapel is located with magnificent frescoes. Opposite is the baptismal font, the only one in Mexico designed for baptism by immersion. Because this is where the evangelization of Michoacán began.

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We recommend

  • If you are in the area on the Night of the Dead, we recommend watching Don Juan Tenorio, traditionally performed on this date.
  • On Good Friday, there is a spectacular procession of the Christ of the Holy Burial, and the cornstalk paste Christ figures that are kept in the village, in the church courtyard.

Great for...

Live it

  • In the morning
  • In the afternoon

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Convento s/n, Col. Centro. 58440 Tzintzuntzan, Tzintzuntzan

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