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Top Largest Pyramids in the World – 3 The Great Pyramid of Cholula

The Great Pyramid of Cholula is a huge complex located in Cholula, ten minutes outside of Puebla on the old highway to Mexico City. It’s also known as Tlachihualtepetl and the largest archaeological site of a pyramid in the New World. The pyramid stands 55 metres (180 ft) above the surrounding plain and in its final form it measured 400 by 400 metres (1,300 by 1,300 ft). Originally it was constructed over 2000 years ago. It was a traditional temple dedicated to the god Quetzalcoatl. The architectural style of the building was linked closely to that of Teotihuacan in the Valley of Mexico, although influence from the Gulf Coast also is evident, especially from El Tajin.


In ancient times, Cholula was a religious capital of Mexico. The Great Pyramid of Cholula was constructed in four stages and it was dedicated to the god Quetzalcoatl. It started from the 3rd century BCE through the 9th century CE. The pyramid was constructed along with affiliated temples and it was carried out by various groups over hundreds of years. It has a base of 450 by 450 metres and a height of 66 m. According to the Guinness Book of Records, it is the largest pyramid in the world, even larger than that of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. The ceramics of Cholula were closely linked to those of Teotihuacan and both sites appeared to decline simultaneously. The Postclassic Aztecs believed that Xelhua built the Great Pyramid of Cholula.

At first glance, the Pyramid just looks like a grassy hill crowned by a church. But if you climb the unreconstructed pyramid beside it, you can plainly see the geometric outline of the original structure, which rises from the ground into four levels. Archaeologists have reconstructed one side of one of the lower segments of the pyramid and have dug some five miles of tunnels into the pyramid, which visitors are free to explore.

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