Hispanic Heritage Week was first established in 1968 under President Lyndon B. Johnson. In 1988, the Reagan Administration expanded it to 30 days, and from then on, September 15 through October 15 has been known as Hispanic Heritage Month in the United States. The start date of the celebration also holds historical significance as Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua all recognize it as their day of independence.
The celebration was designed to highlight the history, contributions, traditions, and heritage of U.S. residents whose ancestors hail from Mexico, Spain, the Caribbean, Central, and South America. Across the country, in the forms of art, architecture, customs, and cuisine, it’s not hard to find places that owe their existence to these rich cultures.
Since 1982, the Salvador Dalí Museum has called St. Petersburg, Florida home. Stepping inside this unique structure home to some of Dali’s masterworks is akin to venturing through a dream crafted by the Surrealist artist. In Silvis, Illinois an ordinary street was transformed into an enduring tribute to military veterans—all crafted by Mexican immigrants. From trails and murals to the largest collection of Spanish art and manuscripts outside of Spain, these are 15 fascinating places to celebrate Hispanic and Latino heritage.