Queretaro is among the country’s most historically significant cities and one of the birthplaces of Mexican independence. It was from here that La Corregidora, Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez, used her influence to assist the nascent insurgency against the Spanish in the early 19th century, thus cementing her place as one of the heroines of independence.
As capital of the state of the same name, Queretaro has just over a million inhabitants and one of the highest standards of living in Latin America. Though boasting an impressive infrastructure, the aesthetically pleasing city has some wonderful colonial architecture as well as a very amenable climate – making it a very popular tourist destination for Mexicans.
The origin of its name is disputed, but among the explanations offered are an expression in the Otomi language meaning ‘ball game’, and another in the P’urhepecha tongue meaning ‘place of the crags’. Ever since the 17th century, Santiago de Queretaro, to give it its full name, has been a vibrant commercial hub and, thanks to its central location, a gateway between Mexico City and the north of the country.
The historic centre of Queretaro is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and features a perfectly preserved baroque town with places of worship, monasteries and museums dotted along its winding streets.
The city of Queretaro is something of a paradox when it comes to football. Despite having in the Estadio Corregidora a host stadium from the 1986 FIFA World Cup™ and one of the finest arenas in the country, no team from the city has ever won a first division league title. In fact, the city’s traditional side, Queretaro FC (or Los Gallos Blancos, as they’re widely known), have spent more time in the country’s second division than its top flight.
Once again this season, the team find themselves battling to preserve their first-division status, although they can also count on the support of their passionate and loyal followers as they continue on this quest.