Thursday, December 09, 2010


The colonial town of Valladolid was first established in 1543 by an unnamed Spanish conquistador at a place called Chouac-Ha. Two years later, mosquitoes forced its relocation to its present site over a Mayan town called Zaci-Val. The town was built from the stones of the ancient settlement and to show this, the residents have left the corners of their buildings unplastered. Valladolid became a city in 1823. It was the center of the native Mayan’s revolt in 1847 against the European-descended Yucatecos which became known as Yucatan Caste War. In 1910, the sparks that would trigger the Mexican Revolution were ignited in Valladolid.

But this blog is about churches and noodles and what really pulled me to Valladolid is the Church of San Servacio that was first built by Fr. Francisco Hernandez in the same year the town was relocated in 1545 to its current site. The church was ordered demolished in 1705 by Bishop Pedro de los Reyes Rios who declared it profaned by the massacre of 40 city officials by Mayan insurgents (i.e. Assassination of the Mayors). It was replaced by the present structure that was started to be built in 1706.

I would find out later that Valladolid is host to 5 more colonial era churches: the Cathedral of San Bernardino which is said to be the first Catholic church to be built in American soil, and the churches of Santa Lucia, Candelaria, San Juan de Dios, and Sta. Ana. And I could have had enough time to go to those churches if I did my usual pre-shoot research. I should be hanged for this oversight.

My first Mexican church is more of a recreation in a restaurant called Hacienda where we were treated to a buffet lunch of Yucatan cuisine after our Chichen-Itza tour. Then I have to insist to turn back and shoot the centuries-old church of Pitse who, according to our host, was the largest ancient Mayan settlement in Mexico.

I did not have time to sample the noodles because there’s none except for the everyday spaghetti. Hindi din daw masarap ang pansit nila sabi ng boss ko sa email niya.

I should not have listened to him.

PHOTOS (from top to bottom): (1) Valladolid's Church of San Servacio, (2) the recreated church of the restaurant called Hacienda, and (3) the ancient church of Piste.

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