Any Tlalpan Visitors Guide needs to mention that the area's territory represents some 20.7% of Mexico City's total. It's easily the biggest alcaldía by area. What's more, some 80% is in protected conservation areas. That means Tlalpan plays an important role in the city's aquifer replenishment, oxygen generation, and carbon dioxide capture. The forests of Tlalpan have welcomed families, explorers, and athletes for generations.
The area was settled first by Tepanec groups, and later by Otomi peoples. The Cuicuilco area is the most prominent archaeological site in the alcaldia. Founded around 200 BCE, it was a heavily urbanized area until the Xitle volcano erupted in the 2nd century CE. Topilejo, and today's San Miguel Ajusco, were founded later in the 12th century CE, as populations of Xochimilca and Tepaneca peoples also returned to the area.
In the colonial period, Tlalpan was best known for the Calzada de Tlalpan, an ancient toad rebuilt between 1535 and 1551. It's still a major throughway.
The constitution of 1824, referred to Tlalpan as "San Agustín de las Cuevas," and it remained the capital of the State of Mexico until it was incorporated into the Federal District in 1855. By 1903, Tlalpan was one of the 13 municipalities of the Federal District. It remained so until 1928 when these same municipalities became "delegations."
Today, a Tlalpan Visitors Guide needs to include all of the following. It's as dynamic as any part of the city, albeit, further away.
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