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¡Bienvenido a la ciudad de México! Posted by on May 29, 2019 in Mexican culture, Travel

La ciudad de México es la capital de México. También es la segunda ciudad más grande del hemisferio occidental, después de São Paulo. Es una ciudad vibrante y bulliciosa. Hay muchas cosas interesantes que puedes hacer aquí. ¡Bienvenido a la ciudad de México! (Mexico City is the capital of Mexico. It’s also the second largest city in the Western Hemisphere, after São Paulo. It’s a vibrant and bustling city. There are many interesting things you can do here. Welcome to Mexico City!)

Centro Historico

If it’s your first time in DF, your first stop should definitely be el Centro Historico (the Historic Center). You can begin your trip in la Plaza de la Constitución (Constitution Square), the city’s main square. Es informalmente conocida como El Zócalo (It is informally known as the Zocalo).

Mexico City Centro Historico (Part One)

Take a tour of DF’s Centro Historico.

Hay muchos lugares famosos aquí, como el Palacio Nacional, la Catedral Metropolitana, y Templo Mayor (There are many famous places here, such as the National Palace, the Metropolitan Cathedral, and the Main Temple). These are all very historic and important landmarks and are popular places to visit in CDMX.

It’s possible to see all three of these landmarks in just a few hours, but you might want to schedule in a break for el almuerzo (lunch). Una buena opción son las tortas o los tacos al pastor. ¡Son deliciosos y baratos! (A good option is tortas or tacos al pastor. They’re delicious and cheap!).

También hay muchos museos en el centro histórico, como el Palacio de Bellas Artes, el Museo Nacional De Arte, y el Museo Nacional de las Culturas (There are also many museums in the Historic Center, such as the Palace of Fine Arts, the National Museum of Art, and the National Museum of Culture).

La Cultura Mexicana (Mexican Culture)

The Palace of Fine Arts

The Palace of Fine Arts is probably one of the most beautiful and well-known buildings in Mexico City. Inside, you can see many famous murals, including Diego Rivera’s El hombre en el cruce de caminos (Man at the Crossroads).

One of the most interesting things about walking around Mexico City is all the amazing street art, which is known in Spanish as either arte urbano or arte callejero. One great place to see a lot of street art is the few blocks around el Templo de la Santísima Trinidad (Church of the Holy Trinity). 

El Centro Histórico tiene muchos mercados callejeros interesantes (The Historic Center has many interesting street markets). These are fun places to simply wander around in and get lost for a while.

Check out Part One of a video tour of the Historic Center.

Un gran lugar para ver la puesta de sol es la Torre Latinoamericana (A great place to watch the sunset is the Latin American Tower). This is a very historic building, as it was the first skyscraper to successfully be built on highly seismic land. It actually survived the massive 1985 earthquake without major damage.

Una buena vista!

You can buy a ticket to head up to the viewing platform, or you can just head to the bar below it if you would rather spend that money on una michelada. If you’re wondering what a michelada is, it’s a beer with lime juice, salt, and chili.

Por la noche, un lugar divertido para visitar es la Plaza Garibaldi (In the evening, a fun place to visit is the Plaza Garibaldi). Here you can check out el Museo del Tequila y el Mezcal (the Museum of Tequila and Mezcal), where you can learn all about Mexico’s most famous booze. 

Meeting a mariachi group in DF.

Plaza Garibaldi is also called the Mariachi Plaza, and for good reason. Roaming mariachi bands walk around the square with their instruments in hand, ready to serenade you. El mariachi es una parte muy importante de la cultura mexicana (Mariachi is a very important part of Mexican culture). It’s definitely worth it to stick around here for dinner and hire a band to play you a few songs.

There’s a lot more to see in Part Two of our video tour.

Other Places of Interest

Video Tour of Chapultapec Castle

The beautiful Chapultapec Castle.

Make sure you set aside a day to explore the massive el Bosque de Chapultepec (Chapultapec Forest). This giant park is considered the lungs of Mexico City, and it’s a beautiful place to spend a day. Here you can visit el Castillo de Chapultepec (Chapultapec Castle), the only real castle in North America. Inside you’ll see incredible murals and el Museo Nacional de Historia (National Museum of History). Outside, you can enjoy amazing views of the city and a colorful garden.

Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe Video Tour

A few scenes from the Basilica.

One place you won’t want to miss is la Basílica de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe. This is the 2nd most visited site in all of Catholicism, behind only the Vatican. Millions of people visit every year, with the biggest crowds showing up on December 12 for the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the patroness of the Americas.

Walking along the Avenue of the Dead.

While you’re in Mexico City, you have to make sure you pay a visit to Teotihuacán, which was once the largest pre-Columbian city in all of the Americas. The name means the Place of Gods – a name given by the Aztecs when they discovered it. They believed it was the place where the sun and moon were created. Climb atop both the Temple of the Sun and the Temple of the Moon to take in the views. Be sure to come down before the sun is its strongest, and go for lunch in a nearby restaurant in a cave.

 

Now that you’ve read a bit about Mexico City and what there is to do there, I’ve got a few questions for you to practice answering in Spanish:

¿Te gusta la ciudad de México? ¿Por qué?
Do you like Mexico City? Why?

¿Has visitado la ciudad de México?
Have you visited Mexico City?

¿Qué hiciste allí?
What did you do there?

Leave a comment below and let us know! Feel free to give any recommendations you have for visiting CDMX as well.

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About the Author: sasha

Sasha is an English teacher, writer, photographer, and videographer from the great state of Michigan. Upon graduating from Michigan State University, he moved to China and spent 5+ years living, working, studying, and traveling there. He also studied Indonesian Language & Culture in Bali for a year. He and his wife run the travel blog Grateful Gypsies, and they're currently trying the digital nomad lifestyle across Latin America.


Comments:

  1. Rick:

    I’ve been to DF 3 times and found it very exciting…mostly. Always stayed in the historico central, and rain or shine there’s plenty to see if you like to walk especially.
    Bad experience on the metro which is challenging and we were pre warned, but I was insistent. I’d recommend a taxi from now on. Of course the museo antropología is a must and the street organists have been planted irrevocably in my brain for evermore despite an attempted bo diddly saturation override.
    Great place.


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