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Veracruz

Free and Sovereign State of
Veracruz of Ignacio de la Llave


Estado Libre y Soberano
de Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave
—  State  —

Flag

Coat of arms
Motto: "Veracruz late con fuerza" (Veracruz beats with strength)[1]
Location within Mexico
Country  Mexico
Capital Xalapa
Municipalities 212
Largest City Veracruz
Admission December 22, 1823[2]
Order 7th
Government
 - Governor Fidel Herrera Beltrán (PRI)
 - Federal Deputies PRI: 6
PAN: 11
PRD: 2
Convergencia: 2
 - Federal Senators PRD: 1
PAN: 1
Convergencia: 1
Area
Ranked 11th
 - Total 71,699 km2 (27,683.1 sq mi)
Population (2005)
 - Total 7,110,214 (Ranked 3rd)
 - Demonym Veracruzano
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
HDI (2004) 0.7457 - medium
Ranked 28th
ISO 3166-2 MX-VER
Postal abbr. Ver.
Website Veracruz Site Government

Veracruz, formally Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave (in English, literally: "True Cross of Ignatius of the Key") is one of the 31 states that constitute the United Mexican States. Veracruz is borderd by Tamaulipas to the north, the Gulf to the east, Tabasco to the southeast, Oaxaca and Chiapas to the south and Puebla, Hidalgo, and San Luis Potosi to the west. With a population of 7 million the state holds the third place in the nation.

The capital is Xalapa, other important cities include Veracruz, Coatzacoalcos and Orizaba.

Contents

History

In April 1518, Juan de Grijalva disembarked on an islet near the shore that was called San Juan de Ulúa. On April 22, 1519 Hernan Cortes disembarked on Chalchihuecan beach, where he decided to found a village and form the first colonial settlement in Mexico. That day was Good Friday, the day of Holy Week known as the day of La Vera Cruz (True Cross) — hence he chose the name of La Villa Rica de la Vera Cruz.

It was from this base in August 1519 that Cortes began his course of conquest inland to Tenochtitlan, Mexico, while his subsidiary conquistador commanders pacified other regions that today shape the entity of Veracruz.

From this beginning, Veracruz as the entry point for conquest became the principal point of communication and harbor between Spain and New Spain. From this port were shipped many products to Europe like cotton, rice, wheat, domestic animals, gun powder, textiles, wine and all the considerable produce from this rich colony.

During the Mexican Revolution there was a brief occupation of the port of Veracruz from April to November 1914, as the United States tried to prevent a shipment of arms to the forces of Victoriano Huerta.

Prior to independence from Spain, there were numerous slave rebellions throughout the Americas, including in Mexico. The first documented slave rebellion in Mexico occurred in 1537; this was followed by the establishment of various runaway slave settlements called "palenques." Some rebellions were in alliance with Indians and mestizos even as far north as Chihuahua. In 1608, Spaniards negotiated the establishment of a free black community with Yagna, a runaway rebel slave. Today, that community in Veracruz bears its founder's name.

Geography

Veracruz is located in the east-central part of Mexico, between 17°10 and 22°38 North and between 93°55' and 98°38' West. It has a mainland area of 71,641 km2 (27,661 sq mi) and includes several islands in the Gulf of Mexico totalling a further 58 km2 (22 sq mi).

Veracruz borders the states of Tamaulipas to the north, Oaxaca and Chiapas to the south, Tabasco to the southeast, Puebla, Hidalgo, and San Luis Potosí to the west, and the Gulf of Mexico to the east.

In the coastal plains and throughout most of the state, the climate is hot and humid. In the foothills of the mountains, the climate is cool and humid. The climate only becomes cold in the mountain regions, where it also rains copiously. Veracruz is occasionally affected by hurricanes.

Veracruz has a tropical climate and impressive natural scenery, such as the Citlaltépetl Volcano (also known as Pico de Orizaba), the highest peak in the nation. There are picturesque cities and towns that have preserved their local architecture. Along the coast is the Costa Esmeralda, a 50 kilometers (31 mi) beach strip north of the port, and the archaeological zone of El Tajín, which has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The capital of Veracruz is Xalapa, located in the central western part of the state. With more than 7 million inhabitants, the state of Veracruz is the third most populous in the nation, after the Federal District and the State of Mexico.

Climate

Veracruz
Climate chart (explanation)
J F M A M J J A S O N D
 
 
50
 
24
14
 
 
32
 
28
16
 
 
18
 
28
16
 
 
48
 
31
19
 
 
73
 
33
21
 
 
308
 
29
20
 
 
250
 
29
19
 
 
125
 
31
21
 
 
387
 
28
20
 
 
204
 
27
18
 
 
54
 
25
14
 
 
36
 
25
14
average max. and min. temperatures in °C
precipitation totals in mm
source: Comisión Nacional del Agua

Demography

With a population of 7,011,214 inhabitants, according to the National Census of 2005 conducted by the INEGI; Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave has third place in the nation, only behind Mexico and Distrito Federal. Seven percent of the inhabitants reside in the port of Veracruz and only six percent in the capital of Xalapa.

Fifty six percent of the population is less than 30 years old. Life expectancy is similar to the national average of 71 years for men and 76 for women.

The population index of the entity does not seem affected by the 3% that migrates to other parts of the country, or the 11 out of 1 thousand people average that migrate to the United States every year.

As for the ethnic diversity of religion, in Veracruz there are 13 indigenous cultures present, whose representatives speak mainly nahuatl, totonaca and huasteco.

It is worth mentioning that 83% of the Veracruz population claims Catholicism as their religious affiliation.

Education

Institutions of higher education include:

Economy

The state of Veracruz is a land of many natural resources; its inhabitants are therefore involved in agriculture, livestock breeding and fishing. The state also has industry and tourist facilities.

The fertility of the land, the variety of climates and the abundance of water permit the cultivation of many different crops. Veracruz is an important producer of corn, sugarcane, banana, mango, citrus fruits, potatoes, tobacco and other crops Various animal species are also bred: cattle, pigs, goats and sheep. Studies have shown that the improvement of cattle has led to the increased production of milk and meat. Veracruz also produces poultry and bees.

Since it is a national and international port, the city of Veracruz plays an important role in the transportation of many of the products that enter or leave Mexico. Tuxpan, Coatzacoalcos and Alvarado are characterized by great activity as internal ports.

Industry is also crucial in Veracruz, since it is one of Mexico's main oil producers; it is also known for its production of food, beer and steel piping.

Veracruz produces handicrafts like articles and household goods made from palm, vanilla figures, pottery, woolen textiles, musical instruments and goods made from tortoiseshell.

Tourism

In the pre-Hispanic era, Isla de Sacrificios (Sacrifice Island) was inhabited by the Totonacs and the Olmecs, and was named Chalchihuitlapazco. It was discovered in 1518 by Juan de Grijalva, during the exploration of the Gulf of Mexico. One of the largest islands around Boca del Río, this site is surrounded by a coral reef.

La Antigua was the second settlement after "La Villa Rica de la Veracruz". It is located 25 kilometers from Veracruz City. It features the house of Hernán Cortés. It is a small town that holds the oldest still-standing Catholic chapel built in the American continent.

Papantla was founded by Totonacs. It is located 198 meters above sea level between the Cazones and Tecolutla rivers.[3]

El Tajín (City of Thunder) the main ceremonial center of the Totonacs, is located near 3 miles from Papantla, a beautiful and impressive old city where ruins and traditions are found. Every year in February, the site hosts the Cumbre Tajín festival.

Veracruz is also where one of Mexico's largest and best-known carnivals is celebrated every year.

Languages

Spanish is the official and heavily dominant language in Veracruz. Nahuatl is still spoken and common use in some towns and zones like Zongolica, Papantla, Mixtequilla and Huayacocotla. Northern Italian dialects can still be heard in the old Italian settlements of Colonia Manuel Gonzalez, Huatusco and most areas between Xalapa and Orizaba and Cordoba, Veneto is the main dialect along with Friulian and Piedmontese. In the area near Gutierrez Zamora the first Italian settlers still retain linguistic traditions of the Piedmontese dialect which has influenced local Spanish. There are a very few Greek speakers in towns near Rinconada, the "gitanos" (Gypsy). As well on the region of the low San Rafael, French is predominant, due to settlers from the Haute-Saône region in France where the towns of San Rafael, Jicaltepec, Mentideros and other nearby towns are reminiscent of rural France. German has been used in the failed colony near Hatusco called El Mirador, where an old Finca was. Today the descendents of these German settlers still retain the southern Bavarian dialect to a minimum and keep their traditions, founded by Karl Sartorus. Also to be mentioned: Catalan, Basque, Gaelic, and more Spanish dialects that were brought and kept by their descendants. Although some people know essentials of English, mainly in commerce or touristic zones of big cities, locals never use it to communicate.

Traditionally, the (Spanish) accent of Veracruz resembles Caribbean Spanish, with a strong tendency to drop the final -S/-Z as in the Cuban and Chilean accents.
Examples:

  • máh o menoh for más o menos
  • conohco for conozco
  • bahta for basta
  • Veracru for Veracruz, etc.

Yet under the influence of the capital, this feature has weakened among the younger generation.[citation needed]

Municipalities

The state of Veracruz is subdivided into 212 municipalities (municipios). See municipalities of Veracruz.

The municipalities are grouped into the following regions (regiones):

  • Capital
  • Huasteca Alta
  • Huasteca Baja
  • Montañas
  • Nautla
  • Olmeca
  • Papaloapan
  • Sotavento
  • Totonaca
  • Tuxtlas

Major communities

References

External links

Coordinates: 19°26′05″N 96°22′59″W / 19.43472°N 96.38306°W / 19.43472; -96.38306

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Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Veracruz is a large city in the state of Veracruz in Central Mexico. It is known for perhaps the best nightlife in the state, and its spacious downtown area near the harbor (zocalo) comes alive with music and dancing with a strong Cuban influence. Highlights are the annual carnival celebrations around February when the party atmosphere is particularly raucous and hotel rooms become difficult to find.

There is some pretty architecture in the city, including a historic fortess and several marine museums. A few beaches can be found north of Veracruz but the water is not very clean; beach lovers might want to go north to Tecolutla or south to Los Tuxtlas.

Veracruz was the point at which Cortez originally landed in Mexico. The Port of Veracruz remains the core of its economy. The locals call the city "Puerto" (port) to differentiate the city from the state of Veracruz.

Understand

Local language is, of course, Spanish. More than half (but not all) of the hospitality workers we encountered spoke English.

Get in

Only US city to fly direct is from Houston, Tx via Continental Airlines. There are many options from other Mexican cities, most notably Mexico City. The airport is about 10km west of downtown.

You can drive with a comfortable bus from the bus hub located at the Metro stop San Lazaro in Mexico City. The trip takes around 5 1/2 hours.

Get around

When arriving at the bus station, you can buy a voucher for a taxi which then will drive in front of the bus station. The station is located on Tuero de Molina and 20 de Noviembre. You can also take a Bus from Puebla which takes 3-4 hours.

  • San Juan de Ulúa Castle, Zona portuaria. Tu - Su, 9:00am - 5:30pm. Last fortress of the Spanish Empire, later used as a prision during Porfirio Díaz' government, known as one of the most cruel prisons of that time, you can hear horror stories of torture. The castle is located near the piers near downtown and you can access it walking.  edit
  • Baluarte de Santiago. Last standing part from the wall that used to sorround the old city.  edit
  • Museo Agustin Lara. The former house of famous music writer Agustin Lara, now is made a museum.  edit
  • Downtown. To watch people dance "danzon" a traditional cuban music adopted in Veracruz. You can see the cathedral and enjoy a drink at Los Portales.  edit
  • Boulevard. Walk seeing the see, or run, skate, bike by the boulevard.  edit
  • amphibian, Lerdo 117, (229) 931 0997 (), [1]. Offer activities like rafting, snorkeling, gotcha. Also offered in English, special prices for groups.  edit

Eat

Meals depend on where you eat, you can eat great sea food in Boca del Rio and Mandinga and Alvarado (but for this last one you have to travel aout 45 minutes). Look for the Palapas (huts) and you can have a great meal for little money.

Budget

In Veracruz, as in most Mexican cities, you won't notice much difference in taste between tacos from a fancy restaurant on the plaza and tacos from a street cart, it all more or less tastes fantastic. If you're on a budget, it's best to stay away from restaurants on the plaza, where you'll pay a premium for location. Street carts are definitely the cheapest option, but if you like to sit down and eat, a good compromise that's still dirt-cheap is any of lunch counters at the Mercado Hidalgo.

  • Helados El Malecón, Güero Güero Güera Güera - good ice cream sorbets. If you are very hungry, or have a companion, try a champola de guanábana, a huge milkshake of guanabana ice cream and condensed milk.
  • Gran Café de la Parroquia - Try the lechero, or espresso with fresh and creamy milk. The picadas y gorditas con huevo (fried, handmade tortillas topped with salsa and scrambled eggs) make a good breakfast. The rest of the food is overpriced.
  • El Bayo (FIXME: address? it's on the road to Xalapa, by the exit to San Juan de Ulúa). Excellent seafood, especially the seafood cocktails and arroz a la tumbada (red rice with seafood).
  • Rio de la Plata It is a traditional Mexican Cantina, where you can find delicious and fresh fish. Waiters usually make "rifas" of Sea Food Salads. The ticket costs about USD 3.00 and it is really funny. It is located two blocks away from "Plaza de Armas"

Drink

Night clubs are the most expensive places. They will ask you to buy a bottle (whiskey, rum, vodka, whatever) in order to give you a table to seat. If you don't mind standing you can drink single drinks around 13 USD for a Cosmopolitan, for example. Besides men have to pay at the entrance 5-10 USD, women enter for free.

  • Bar Titos, on the corner of Aquiles Serdan and José Ma. Morelos. A great local bar, but be prepared for an awkward silence if you're a gringo walking in the door. Relax and be polite and the regulars will undoubtedly warm to you and try to get you to salsa dance with them. Beer and drinks are much less expensive than in more touristy bars. Also, unlike many Mexican dive bars, the clientele is coed and well-mixed. Plus, there's usually a late-night taco cart right outside for a snack when your night's over.
  • Hotel Amparo, Aquiles Serdan No. 482, Tel/Fax.(229)-932-2738. Excellent location and a great value. Nice clean rooms with private bathrooms two blocks from the Zocalo. Secure attached parking for your vehicle, also.
  • Hotel Trianon, Nacozari 76, (229) 931 2121, [2]. Located in downtown near the coast. Private bathroom and air conditioning. Ask for special prices and an cable for internet.  edit
  • Hotel Bello Veracruz[3]. Great hotel, reasonable prices, swimming pool but no beach.
  • Hotel Villas Dalí[4]. Also great at reasonable prices.
  • Fiesta Inn Malecon[5]. Located near downtown in front of the pier and the Venustiano Carranza lighthouse. A good place to stay but no beach or swimming pool. Prices around $100 US.
  • The Fiesta Americana Veracruz and Fiesta Inn Veracruz are located in front of the beach but more expensive. It has a world class swimming pool, it's modern and clean, and is a nice upscale place to stay with kids. It has wired Internet (no wireless), so bring your own RJ41 cable.
  • Hotel Camino Real[6]. Great hotel, but expensive.

Contact

x-pat in Veracruz.. jonw46996@hotmail.com

Get out

The small town Catemaco lies nearby. The bus takes only 2 1/2 hours and you'll find some nice beaches, water activities and more.

  • The Italian Coffee Company, Costa Verde. SSID="ITALIAN COFFEE", no power available  edit
  • Carl's Jr, Soriana parking lot. SSID="linksys", no power available  edit
  • VIPS Acuario, Waterfront by the Aquarium. SSID="VIPS ACUARIO", no power available  edit
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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Contents

English

Map of Mexico highlighting Veracruz

Etymology

Spanish, meaning true cross.

Proper noun

Singular
Veracruz

Plural
-

Veracruz

  1. A state of Mexico.

Translations

See also


Spanish

Proper noun

Veracruz f.

  1. A state of Mexico.

Related terms

See also

  • Wikipedia-logo.png Veracruz on the Spanish Wikipedia.es.Wikipedia

Simple English

State of Veracruz
Estado Libre y Soberano de
Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave
—  State  —
File:Flag of
Flag
File:Coat of arms of
Coat of arms
Nickname(s): Veracruz
Motto: "Estado próspero"[1]
Location within Mexico
Country
Capital Xalapa
Municipalities 212
Largest City Veracruz
Government
 - Governor Javier Duarte de Ochoa (PRI)
 - Federal Deputies PRI: 6
PAN: 11
PRD: 2
Convergencia: 2
 - Federal Senators PRD: 1
PAN: 1
Convergencia: 1
Area
Ranked 11th
 - Total 71,699 km2 (27,683.1 sq mi)
Population (2005)
 - Total 7,110,214 (Ranked 3rd)
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
HDI (2004) 0.7457 - medium
Ranked 28th
ISO 3166-2 MX-VER
Postal abbr. Ver.

Veracruz is one of the 32 states that make up Mexico.

References

  1. (Spanish) Veracruz State government This is the motto used by the current State administration

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