AAA Editor Notes
Great Temple (Templo Mayor) encompasses a city block just n. of the Zócalo; the site entrance is on Av. Seminario (M: Zócalo, line 2). The only available parking is a commercial underground garage near the Palace of Fine Arts. The Great Temple, or Teocalli, of the Aztecs was a monumental pyramid that served as a religious, political and sacrificial center. These ruins in the heart of a present-day metropolis are striking evidence of a separate civilization that flourished hundreds of years earlier.
Demolished and buried by conquering Spaniards, the structure was accidentally discovered by a subway construction worker in 1978. The excavated ruins reveal successive layers of older temples, each built atop the other, and include other structures as well as a stone replica of a tzompantli, or wall of skulls. Background information in Spanish explains the origin of the different temples. Audio guides in English are available.
Note: Visitors must proceed through the complex in one direction and cannot turn around and go back once inside the site. Photographs without flash are permitted.
Time: Allow 1 hour, 30 minutes minimum.