Cholula Travel Guide

Discover the best things to do, places to stay, food to try, and more in the charming town of Cholula, Mexico. Plan your trip with this comprehensive travel guide.

Introduction to Cholula

Cholula is a charming town located in the state of Puebla, in Central Mexico. It is known for its stunning colonial architecture, rich history, and vibrant culture. The town is home to a plethora of beautiful churches and historic buildings, as well as natural attractions like scenic hiking trails and breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. Whether you’re a history buff, an outdoor enthusiast, or just a traveler looking for a unique and off-the-beaten-path destination, Cholula has something for everyone.

List of Places to Visit in Cholula

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

Cholula is steeped in history and culture, and there are endless museums and historical sites to explore. Some of the must-visit attractions include:

  • Great Pyramid of Cholula: This ancient pyramid is one of the largest in the world and dates back to pre-Columbian times.
  • San Gabriel Convent: This beautiful 16th-century convent was built on top of a pre-Hispanic temple and is now a museum that displays works of art and pieces of religious art.
  • Casa del Dean: This historic building served as the residence of a dean during the colonial era and now houses a museum showcasing various artifacts.

Natural Attractions of Cholula: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

Cholula’s natural beauty is a major draw for visitors, and there are many outdoor activities to enjoy. Some of the top natural attractions include:

  • La Malinche National Park: This stunning park is home to the majestic La Malinche volcano and offers hiking, camping, and outdoor activities for all ages.
  • Los Remedios National Park: This park features beautiful hiking trails, stunning views, and breathtaking waterfalls.
  • The Calvario Hill Walk: This walking trail features sweeping views of the town and surrounding countryside, making it the perfect spot for a leisurely stroll or a romantic sunset hike.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Cholula

Cholula is a great destination for outdoor enthusiasts, with countless hiking and biking trails to explore. Some popular routes include:

  • The Cholula to San Andres Hike: This scenic trail takes you through picturesque countryside and small villages, with fantastic views of the surrounding mountains and landscape.
  • The Huaquechula to Atlixco Bike Trail: This trail is perfect for mountain bikers, with challenging terrain and stunning scenery at every turn.
  • The Cerro Zapotecas Hike: This moderate hike is perfect for nature lovers, with stunning views of the town and the surrounding volcanoes.

Best Things to Do in Cholula: Activities and Tours

Cholula has something to offer for everyone, with a variety of activities and tours available. Some of the top things to do include:

  • Visit the Church of Santa Maria Tonantzintla: This beautiful church is known for its elaborate and colorful interior, featuring intricate carvings and frescoes.
  • Explore the San Francisco Acatepec Church: This 16th-century church is a must-visit for history buffs, showcasing stunning colonial architecture and beautiful artwork.
  • Take a Hot Air Balloon Ride: This unique experience offers a bird’s-eye view of the town and surrounding countryside, with breathtaking views that will take your breath away.

Week-Long Itinerary for Cholula

For visitors looking to spend more time in Cholula, a week-long itinerary is the perfect way to explore all that the town has to offer. Here’s a sample itinerary:

Day Activity
Day 1 Visit the Great Pyramid of Cholula and explore the town’s historic center
Day 2 Take a hot air balloon ride and visit the Church of Santa Maria Tonantzintla
Day 3 Hike the Cerro Zapotecas trail and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant
Day 4 Visit the Casa del Dean museum and explore the town’s colonial architecture
Day 5 Spend the day exploring the Los Remedios National Park
Day 6 Explore the San Gabriel Convent and enjoy dinner at a local restaurant
Day 7 Take a day trip to nearby Atlixco and enjoy the town’s markets and street food

Food and Drink Scene of Cholula

Cholula is known for its delicious cuisine and vibrant food scene. Some must-try dishes include:

Must-Try Dishes

  • Chiles en Nogada: A traditional Mexican dish made with poblano chilies stuffed with meat and covered in a creamy walnut sauce.
  • Mole Poblano: One of Mexico’s most famous dishes, made with a complex sauce of spices, chilies, and chocolate.
  • Cemitas: A popular street food, made with a sesame seed bun, avocado, meat, and cheese.

Local Beverages

  • Pulque: A fermented drink made from the sap of the maguey cactus, with a slightly sour flavor and a low alcohol content.
  • Mezcal: A type of tequila made from the agave plant, with a smoky flavor and a higher alcohol content.

Where to Stay in Cholula: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Cholula has a range of accommodation options to fit every budget. Some of the top choices include:

  • La Quinta Luna: A luxurious boutique hotel housed in a beautifully restored 17th-century building.
  • El Hotelito: A charming and affordable guesthouse located near the town center.
  • Hostal Carolina: A budget-friendly hostel with a great location and friendly staff.

What to Buy in Cholula: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

Cholula is known for its colorful handicrafts and unique souvenirs. Some top gifts to bring home include:

  • Talavera Pottery: Colorful and ornate ceramics made in the traditional style of Puebla.
  • Textiles: Vibrant fabrics and blankets made by traditional weavers in Cholula.
  • Sweets: Cholula is known for its delicious candies, including cajeta (caramel) and camote (sweet potato).

Local Culture and Customs of Cholula

Cholula has a vibrant and unique culture, influenced by its indigenous heritage and colonial history. Visitors should dress modestly when visiting religious sites, and it is customary to remove your shoes before entering a house or temple.

Best Time to Visit Cholula

The best time to visit Cholula is in the spring (March to May) or fall (September to November), when the weather is mild and the town is less crowded. Avoid visiting in the summer, when temperatures can soar, and the town is often packed with tourists.

Do’s and Don’ts of Cholula


  • Try the local cuisine and drinks.
  • Respect local customs and traditions.
  • Take a hot air balloon ride for stunning views of the town and countryside.


  • Dress immodestly or disrespect religious sites.
  • Take photos of people without their permission.
  • Buy souvenirs made from endangered species or without proper documentation.

Safety and Health

Safety in Cholula

Cholula is generally a safe and welcoming destination. However, visitors should exercise caution when traveling alone at night and avoid walking in isolated areas or showing off expensive belongings.

Health in Cholula

Cholula is a relatively healthy destination, with clean water and good hygiene standards. However, visitors should take precautions against mosquito-borne illnesses like dengue fever, especially during the rainy season (June to September).

Getting to Cholula: Transportation Options and Logistics

Cholula is easily accessible by air or bus, with several options for getting to the town.

Airports Near Cholula

The nearest airport to Cholula is the Puebla International Airport (PBC), which is located about 30 minutes from the town center.

Bus Stations Near Cholula

Cholula has a bus station with daily connections to major cities throughout Mexico, including Puebla, Mexico City, and Oaxaca.

Other Options

Visitors can also hire a private car or take a taxi from the airport or bus station to the town center.

How to Get Around in Cholula

Cholula is a small town that is easily explored on foot or by bike. Taxis and buses are also available for longer trips or for those who prefer not to walk.

Where to Go Next from Cholula: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

Cholula is a great base for exploring the surrounding area, with many nearby destinations worth visiting. Some top choices include:

  • Puebla: This historic city is just a short bus ride from Cholula and is known for its magnificent architecture and delicious food.
  • Atlixco: This charming town is known for its colorful flowers and markets, offering a unique glimpse of traditional Mexican life.
  • La Malinche: This stunning national park offers hiking and camping opportunities and is perfect for nature lovers.


Cholula is a unique and charming destination, perfect for travelers looking to experience the beauty and culture of Central Mexico. With its rich history, vibrant food scene, and stunning natural beauty, Cholula is a must-visit destination that will leave you wanting more. Plan your trip today and get ready to fall in love with this beautiful town.