San Luis Potosi

Teach English in San Luis Potosí



The Mexican state of San Luis Potosí has an area of 24,266 square miles (62,849 km2). It is in the central part of the Mexican republic, It borders Coahuila to the north, Nuevo Leon to the north-east, Tamaulipas to the east, Veracruz to the east, Hidalgo, Queretaro, and Guanajuato to the south, and Zacatecas to the north-west. At the 2010 census the population was 2,585,518. In addition to the state capital San Luis Potosí, the state’s largest cities include Ciudad Valles, Matehuala, and Rioverde.


San Luis Potosí is bounded on the east by Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas and Veracruz, on the south by Hidalgo, Querétaro and Guanajuato, and on the west by Zacatecas.

The state lies mostly on the Mexican Plateau, with the exception of the southeastern corner of the state, where the tableland breaks down into the tropical valley of the Panuco River. The surface of the plateau is comparatively level, with some low mountainous wooded ridges. The Sierra Madre Oriental runs north and south through the state, and separates the Mexican Plateau from the Gulf Coastal Plain to the east. The Sierra Madre Oriental is home to the Sierra Madre Oriental pine-oak forests. The Panuco River originates on the Plateau, and flows eastward through a gap in the Sierra Madre to drain into the Gulf of Mexico. The easternmost portion of the state lies on the Gulf Coastal Plain, and covered by the Veracruz moist forests.

The mean elevation is about 6,000 ft., ensuring a temperate climate. The state lies partly within the arid zone of the north, while the southern half receiving a more liberal rainfall through the influence of the nortes, which deliver significant amounts of rain. The rainfall, however, is uncertain at the western and northern regions, and much of the state is poorly provided with rivers. The soil is fertile and in favorable seasons large crops of wheat, maize, beans and cotton are grown on the uplands. In the low tropical valleys, sugar, coffee, tobacco, peppers and fruit are staple products. Stockraising is an important industry and hides, tallow and wool are exported. Fine cabinet and construction woods are also exported to a limited extent.

At one time San Luis Potosí ranked among the leading mining provinces of Mexico, but the revolts following independence resulted in a great decline in that industry. The area around Real de Catorce has some of the richest silver mines in the country. Other well-known silver mining districts are Peñón Blanco, Ramos and Guadalcázar. The development of Guadalcazar dates from 1620 and its ores yield gold, copper,zinc and bismuth, as well as silver. In the Ramos district, the Cocinera lode was said to have a total yield of over $60,000,000 in the first decade of the 20th century.


Traditionally, the Real de Minas potosino has driven the industrial engines in the state of San Luis Potosí, and as such, nowadays basic metallurgy still has the largest contribution within the Gross Domestic Product of the entity. The main products extracted across local mines are zinc, copper, lead, gold, silver, mercury, manganese, and arsenic. Other industries following the mining lead are in the sectors of chemicals, foods, beverages, tobacco, and textiles.

The services sector, also known as tertiary, is second regarding contribution to the state’s income with a 21%, followed by commerce, hotels and restaurants with 18%. These combined activities employ 51% of the economically active population or EAP.

Agriculture is a traditional activity, still practiced in the Huasteca region. Currently, even if it contributes very little to the state GDP, it nevertheless employs as much as 20% of the EAP of the entity. The main agricultural products grown on Potosí soil are maize, beans, barley, sugar cane, oranges, coffee, sour lemon, tuna, and mango. Livestock activities are focused on raising sheep, cattle, and pigs.