Located in Mexico’s Puebla City, Cuexcomate is the smallest volcano in the world, making it quite the unusual landmark. Measuring 43 feet high, and with a base diameter of just 75 feet, Cuexcomate may be an extinct volcano, but it is well worth taking the time to visit.
The Birth of Cuexcomate
It is believed that Cuexcomate dates all the way back to the year 1064, when the nearby Popocatepetl volcano, which lies between Mexico City and Puebla, erupted. Popocatepetl is frequently erupting, but this eruption was exceptionally violent, resulting in the creation of a secondary crater, otherwise known as Cuexcomate.
A Dark Past
Cuexcomate has experienced a dark past, as it used to be the site at which human sacrifices were carried out. Priests at the time were hoping to appease the Gods and convince them to stop the volcanoes in the area from erupting, as they were slowly destroying the city. They decided that human sacrifices were the way forward, and would throw young individuals into the fiery mountain, but, of course, this did not stop the eruptions, and the priests soon realized that their methods were not making a difference. In following years, the volcano was also used as a depository for those who committed suicide in nearby areas, once again contributing to the dark past that surrounds Cuexcomate.
Inside the Crater
In addition to standing out for being the smallest volcano in the world, Cuexcomate is also unique due to the fact that it boasts a metal spiral staircase that enables visitors to climb all the way down into the volcano’s crater. Once visitors reach the platform at the bottom, they are rewarded with views of the interior of a volcano that many will never have the opportunity to experience. From the pool of water below to the stalactites that hang off the rocks to the eight meter stretch of lava, the view from within is definitely surreal, especially with the addition of the waterfall that ebbs and flows based on the volcanic activity of Popocatepetl. While geographers claim that the volcano is unlikely to suddenly burst into activity, the increased eruptions that Popocatepetl has been experiencing leads some to believe that, if there were to be another violent eruption, the subterranean link between the two volcanoes might become active again, which would put a swift end to Cuexcomate.
Many claim that, due to its unique features, visiting Cuexcomate brings about some interesting health benefits. With the magnetism that it attracts from nearby volcano Popocatepetl, as well as the sound of the water outside, visiting the volcano is said to be able to relieve stress and tension, while promoting overall good health.
Since Cuexcomate is situated in the residential neighborhood of La Libertad, the best way for tourists to pay it a visit is by arranging for a taxi to take you there and back. With this landmark being open every day of the week, it is easy to plan a visit, and will definitely leave you with a memorable experience.