Knowing the last great capital of the Purépecha empire that developed parallel to the Aztec, and managed to resist the attempts of conquest of the Mexica, the Tarascos, as they were also known, achieved a social refinement comparable to that of their warlike neighbors who lived in Tenochtitlan. From Tzintzuntzan controlled the political, economic and religious life of this civilization, the place is also known as The Yácatas, which are rounded pyramidal structures on a large platform and of which five are still preserved.
Like the great Mexico-Tenochtitlan, the Tarascan capital was geographically linked to a lake, the mythical lake of Patzcuaro, possessing a beauty only comparable to its similar lakes in the central area of the country. Both lakes were generous sources not only of the precious liquid but also of abundant edible aquatic fauna, among which is the exquisite and traditional white fish. At its best, the ancient Tarascan domains extended from the stony and bizarre banks of the Lerma River to the north, to the torrid, singing waters of the Balsas River to the south. A gigantic domain of more than 75 thousand km2, whose nerve center was the euphonic Tzintzuntzan, its haughty capital, which in fact never suffered a military defeat. But if we stick to the Codex Plancarte, the northernmost limit of the Tarascan empire could reach the country of the Zuni, the area of the bison or “toroscíbolo”, in the mythical region of Cíbola, in what is now New Mexico, United States .