Historically, a camino real (Royal Road) is defined as a road that connects Spanish capital with Spanish capital, a distinction not shared with roads connecting ordinary Spanish or Indian villages. The term Camino Real implied that the status and privileges granted to the villas and capitals it connected were extended to the main routes of travel through use by officials and others acting in the interest of the crown. Unlike ordinary Indian and Spanish villages, villas like San Antonio and others along the route had charters that prescribed royal privileges.
Queretaro's aqueduct, in Central Mexico, is one of the most eloquent symbols of colonial Mexico. As one of the early major hydraulic engineering projects in North America, it defines the city both nationally and internationally. The aqueduct, designed in 1723 by Juan Antonio de Urrutia y Arana, Marquis of Villa del Villar del Aquila, was inspired by the aqueducts of Segovia, Merida and Tarragona in Spain. It began supplying clean water to the city in this arid region of Mexico on October 17, 1738.