Los Portales of Toluca (The Arches of Toluca) have become a must-see tourist attraction of the city.
Considered the longest in the Mexican Republic, it is a tradition that is alive with shops where you can get some of the most renowned regional products like chorizo in red and green hues, Nopalitos, or cactus, in chipotle, Pambazos, a traditional sandwich filled with potatoes and chorizo, Carnitas or meats of Toluca, sweets of Toluca, and orange liqueur, better known as mosquito, among others.
Construction of the gates, which began on February 6, 1832 by José María González Arriata, lasted until 1917. They are divided into three sections forming a U-shape and each carries a name:
Portal 20 de Noviembre(east) has 37 arches.
Portal Madero (south) has 44.
Portal Reforma (west) has 35 arches.
In 2009, the restoration of the historic center of Toluca began with columns by removing the smooth layers and then letting the rough stone benefit from the sunlight.
That was how they found more than 200 symbols (numbers, letters and scribbles) on all four sides of six of the columns supporting the arches on the Portal Reforma that runs along the street, Calle de Bravo. This finding has been open to various conjectures related to religious and esoteric symbolism but there is still no clear idea of what they mean.