A Sunday in the centro historico of CDMX (Mexico city)
CDMX* Ciudad De Mexico City
Strolling around the historic center of Mexico on a Sunday, I felt like the whole city gathered in the same place. But I’m probably not even close, let’s not forget that it’s the 5th biggest city of the world holding over 10 Million people. In Mexico city, I don’t even look for things to do. I just go out, take random streets and always find things happening. It’s not easy to get bored in a place like this. If you’re interested in the culture scene, there are enough museums, galleries and exhibitions to keep you busy for weeks. If you’re a shopaholic, you will certainly not detox here. And finally if you’re a food lover, get ready to gain some weight.
Plaza de la Constitución (the Zocalo)
The main action action revolves around Plaza de la Constitución: many food stalls, street shows and what seems to be an Aztec festival, I recognise the Montezuma heather hats. They were performing tribal dances and rituals all over the plaza. But at this point I was still being cautious with my camera, since I was walking all by myself, so I didn’t photograph much. On the other side of the plaza was an International cultural exhibition with booths from all over the world. I even found Morocco and went to say hi. The Moroccan stand was one of the most entertaining, with music, henna tattoo workshop and all kinds of Moroccan activities.
Next to the plaza you can find the famous Templo Mayor. It used to be a the main temple of the Aztecs in a form of a pyramid. the temple was destroyed by the Spanish occupation to build the cathedral that you can see standing next to it. It used to look like this: here. There is always a photography exhibition or a related exhibition next to it. That’s why overly zealous patriotism is a crazy thing for me, the world as we know it now is made of bloody conquests that every culture is guilty of. I dare you to find one culture or ethnicity in the world that never killed another at some point in the history for a piece of land or any other selfish reason.
Again, if you like historical sightseing and architecture there is enough to keep you busy for a very long time.
Catedral metropolitana: It’s the one that they destroy El templo Mayor for and the biggest cathedral in Mexico city. It’s a beautiful building but it kind of have a bitter sweet taste due to the history behind it.
Palacio de bellas artes: It’s a major cultural center, and again an architectural gem. It holds all kind of artistic exhibitions and you can see one of the most famous Diego Rivera (Frida Kahlo’s husband) mural: here.
Museums: More than 150 museums around the city. I am only planning to go to Frida Kahlo’s Museum but there a lot of interesting museums to check out.
In Mexico you can find all the International renown brands: Zara, Levi’s, American Eagle, Sfera, Stradivarius…
Otherwise, I noticed that the Chinese Ali Express goods are in abundance here. I’ve never seen that many Chinese products per square meter even in Asia. I should really look into the economic relations between China and Mexico.
I also noticed that the whole city is organised per shopping theme. Every street has a particulatheme. This organisation is impressive, because it’s the kind of things that you need to think of very early on a city development plan. So, in every street you will find different stores but all selling the same goods or services, fairly and peacefully competing with each other. And I challenge you to think about something that we can’t find in Mexico city. It ranges from:
- Orthopaedics l in a street
- Opticians in another
- Camera gear (someone was happy!)
- I even found a street dedicated to huge stores of crystals and Indian holistic goods… unfortunately I can’t buy anything for now, because we are still traveling
- And the amazing place where I tried to repair my hard drive: Plaza de la Tecnologia, which is a two floors building dedicated to all the IT independent workers. Every one of them has a stall number and the place seems to be sponsored by HP… good job HP Mexico! (They call it Heche Pi in here :p)
For hand made Mexican products, I prefer going to a market to have all the options gathered in one place. But boy, are the Mexican handicrafts pretty! Especially the embroidery, Hello boho chic beach looks!
Well you won’t be experiencing a real CDMX Sunday unless you enjoy some street food: paletas, potato chips, crackers, chicharron, huarachas, juices, fruits, grilled corn cobs, nuts and seeds… I will dedicate a whole article to street food because it’s a big part of the local culture.
Thank you for reading and let me know if there is anything specific that you want me to investigate about the city while I’m here.
xo xo Dalal
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