Comayagua: The Historic Capital
Long before Tegucigalpa took over the role as Honduras’s capital, there was another city who boasted the title. Comayagua was founded in 1537, and served as the nation’s capital for over 300 years. However, the city was heavily damaged by fire during a civil war that was raging during the year of 1873. Shortly after the war was over, the government shifted their headquarters about an hour and a half away, in Tegucigalpa. Today, Comayagua is still vital the nation, with a population of over 65,000 and a thriving manufacturing market. And though time has progressed, there are still plenty of reminders of the Colonial charm and spirit that the city was founded upon.
Glimpses of History
Visitors to Comayagua are all certain to depart with a keen awareness of the antiquity of everything that surrounded them. The city is home to some fantastic reminders of ages past. For example, within Comayagua you’ll find what was once Central America’s oldest university, a magnificent school which was founded in 1632 but has since been transformed into the Bishop’s Palace.
Another intriguing glimpse into the past comes by way of a lovely cathedral nestled in the town’s Central Park. If the cathedral itself wasn’t enough, it houses the oldest working clock in all of the Americas, high in the clock tower. In fact, you can even climb up to the tower during your tour and take a look at the gears and machinery. As you walk throughout the rest of the city, you’ll be greeted by some contrasting architecture, since most of the homes in the town are fashioned in the low adobe or cane hut fashion popular among the native Indian people.
If you’re a big fan of watching football on Sundays, you can also plan on doing that in Comayagua too – just the Central American version, soccer. Soccer is so important to the local people (added to the strong Roman Catholic influence) that cities virtually seem like ghost towns on Sundays. The town will shut down completely (or at least early) and at times like this, you’ll either have to join ’em or get out of town. If you opt on some Sunday exploration, a favorite destination is Lago Yojoa, a nearby oasis for great seafood, beautiful scenery and a cool, refreshing breeze. It should be just what the doctor ordered!
With a fresh view of the past, through old architecture and ancient machinery, time seems to flow backwards instead of forwards in Comayagua. It isn’t hard to find yourself slipping back into an age of long ago. Large enough to cater to most any type of traveler, and relaxed enough for the whole family, take some time to enjoy life in Comayagua.