San Cristóbal de La Laguna was founded in the late 15th century on an inland plateau 550 m above sea level next to an insalubrious lagoon. The town has two original town centres each belonging to a different time of history:
- Upper Town is the initial founding site next to the lagoon, and has an unplanned urban structure;
- Lower Town, one kilometre to the East, which is designed on a grid. It is the first ideal territory-town, being designed according to philosophical principles and Royal regulations, organised around a founding square known as Plaza del Adelantado.