Earth : North America : Central America : Honduras : Honduran Highlands : Comayagua
Comayagua is a small city in Honduras. It has maintained much of its picturesque Spanish Colonial era architecture.
Comayagua was founded with the name Santa María de la Nueva Valladolid by Conquistador Alonso de Cáceres under orders from Francisco de Montejo, Governor of Yucatán on December 8, 1537. From 1540 on Comayagua was the capital of the Honduras Province of the Captaincy General of Guatemala. The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, on the main square, was begun in 1563 and inaugurated in 1711.In 1786 (23 December) the Spanish Crown created the Intendencia of Comayagua, with Comayagua as its capital, which lasted until 1812. From 1812 to 1814 it was the capital of the Province of Comayagua when it again reverted to being the capital of the Intendencia of Comayagua until 1820. In 1820, Honduras was again called the Province of Comayagua or Honduras, with Comayagua as its capital. After independence from the Spanish it was the capital of the state of Honduras in the Federal Republic of Central America. After Honduras became an independent republic, the capital alternated between Comayagua and Tegucigalpa (Comayagua being preferred by Conservative administrations, and Tegucigalpa by Liberal ones) before being permanently established at Tegucigalpa in 1880.
In recent years Comayagua has become one of the most important tourist attractions in Honduras. This is due to the Cooperation Técnica Española and the Honduran Institute of Anthropology and History, both of which have cooperated in maintaining the city’s historical sites.
In the downtown is located the Central Plaza. From this strategic point one can appreciate the cathedral of Comayagua and City Hall. Surrounded by beautiful gardens, the Central Plaza serves as point of reference of the city. In it the residents gather to celebrate the local holidays and concerts of marimbas, among other activities.
Right in front of the plaza is located City Hall, which has been reconstructed a couple of times. The building is of neoclassic style and was built during the 16th century.
From the Central plaza one can also appreciate the city’s main attraction, the Cathedral of Comayagua. This church is one of the biggest churches built during the colonial era in Honduras. It was inaugurated on Dec. 8, 1711.
In February 2012, a fire killed more than 350 people at Comayagua prison.
Comayagua is less than 2 hours by car or bus from Tegucigalpa, where the nearest international airport is located. Among others, TACA, American Airlines, Delta, and United Airlines service the Tegucigalpa airport.
As of May 2012, the new highway from Tegucigalpa to Comayagua has been completed, save for some construction zones outside of Comayagua, and is the best highway in Honduras. Expect slow going in the construction zones.
Further away, but on a slightly better road, is the San Pedro Sula airport, the busiest in Honduras.
Rent a car at either of those airports, or catch one of the many busses running the SPS-Tegucigalpa-SPS route.
Taxis abound. Fares for anywhere in town, before 6PM, are 25 Lempiras per person. Rates go up after 6PM and again in the evening hours. Rates may even be higher at 3 AM or so. ALWAYS ask the fare before entering the cab.
In the central square of the town sits the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, an outstanding example of 18th-century colonial architecture.
Do not drink the water anywhere in Honduras. Follow the guidelines about Honduras travel on the US State Department webpage.