PHOTO BY RICH BRIGGS PHOTOGRAPHY
All sorts of spectacular views dot the two-hour drive from Mexico City to Puebla, a route that passes through Parque Nacional Iztaccíhuatl-Popocatépetl. The finest of these sights appears in Cholula, a charming pueblo mágico on the outskirts of the city of Puebla. Atop a hill in the historic center stands the 16th-century Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de los Remedios, a gorgeous golden stone church. The structure—which was damaged by earthquakes in 2017 but was quickly repaired and reopened—stands out like a golden beacon that can be seen from anywhere in town, and it’s especially magnificent when seen from the east, framed by 17,802-foot Popocatépetl, an active volcano that’s the second-tallest mountain in Mexico.
What’s below the church might be even more fascinating. You see, the hill that the building is perched on isn’t a hill at all—it’s actually Tlachihualtepetl, a 180-foot-tall temple that’s the largest pyramid, by volume, in the world. Visitors can access the temple through archaeologist-dug tunnels or climb to the top to pass through the doors of the “new” church. No matter which god(s) you worship, you’ll surely find the majesty of their ancient presence here.
Volkswagen Beetle Final Edition
No vehicle is more appropriate for navigating this part of Mexico than the Volkswagen Beetle. After all, the German manufacturer has been producing its most iconic car—known in Mexico as the Vocho—in its Puebla factory since 1967. You won’t drive more than a few blocks in the city without seeing a vintage Bug, although the Herbie-era models surely can’t compete with the 2019 Final Edition’s 174 horsepower.
As for that name, sadly, it’s true: VW is discontinuing the Beetle. The last one will roll off the line in Puebla this July, so burn rubber for the border while you can. Coupe from $23,045, convertible from $27,295