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Municipality and town
Town square in Cihuatlán, showing church building and plaza
Town square in Cihuatlán, showing church building and plaza
Coat of arms of Cihuatlán
Coat of arms
Municipality location in Jalisco
Municipality location in Jalisco
Cihuatlán is located in Mexico
Location in Mexico
Coordinates: 19°15′N 104°34′W / 19.250°N 104.567°W / 19.250; -104.567
Country Mexico
 • Total713.70 km2 (275.56 sq mi)
 • Total30,241
Time zoneUTC-6 (Central (US Central))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-5 (Central (US Central))

Cihuatlán is a coastal municipality in the Mexican state of Jalisco. Its main city is also named Cihuatlán. It existed when the Spanish first seized Mexico from the Aztecs and was fittingly allowed to retain its name, which in the nahuat language means place of women.


The word Cihuatlán is compounded of two words of nahuatl origin, a language spoken in Central Mexico since the seventh century AD and the language of the Aztecs: Zihua, woman, and Tlán place; therefore Cihuatlán means place of women.


Cihuatlán and the Marabasco river delta

The town was founded on the Marabasco river, and at the time of the Spanish conquest its population was about 500 women and only 20 men.[attribution needed] The first Spanish expedition to the Jalisco coastal zone was led by Gonzalo de Sandoval and in a message from Hernán Cortés to the King of Spain, dated 1528, it is mentioned that the Province of Cihuatlán was, indeed, a 'place of women'. It also had valuables such as gold and pearls.

By decree of the President of the Republic of Mexico, on December 16, 1825, the harbour Barra de Navidad was rebuilt in order to accommodate local and foreign trade.[attribution needed]

Coat of arms[edit]

The Cihuatlán coat of arms is in a French style with cross-sectioning. In the upper left section is the image of a pre-Hispanic woman's head. In the upper right section is a ship sailing on the sea. In the bottom left section is a religious building and in the bottom right section, a view of a fertile valley.

Most important villages[edit]

  • Cihuatlán, 15,697 inhabitants (2005)[attribution needed]
  • Melaque 6,379 inhabitants
  • Barra de Navidad 3,386 inhabitants
  • Jaluco 2,182 inhabitants
  • Emiliano Zapata 1,589 inhabitants

See also[edit]

Coordinates: 19°15′N 104°34′W / 19.250°N 104.567°W / 19.250; -104.567