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Mexico City Holidays offers a handy travel insight to mexico with maps, pictures and hotel reviews. Find out which Mexico City hotels to stay at, what iconic attractions to see and where to mingle with the locals.
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Mexico City has a long history, pre-dating the arrival of Spanish explorer Hernan Cortes in 1519 when he discovered this Aztec city of Tenochtitlan and took it over from its Aztec Emperor Montezuma and re-named it Mexico City. Today, the heart of Mexico City, the zocalo rests on the site where Montezuma's palace once stood.

Today, visitors who opt to visit Mexico City rather than the coastal areas of the Mexican Riviera and the Caribbean will find a great city, the third-largest city in the world, with many wonderful places to explore and visit. From the Centro Historico with its narrow cobblestoned streets to the Zona Rosa, the heart of the city's business and entertainment district, there are many great discoveries waiting to be made for the intrepid traveller.

Mexico City Holidays Planner

The Centro Historico, centred around the Plaza de la Constitucion is full of street vendors. Here you will find the zocalo, the original foundations of the city. When electrical workers discovered a carved stone relic when doing some routine excavations in 1978, there followed archaeological diggings that discovered first the Aztec temple of Tenochtitlan which was destroyed by conquistadors in 1521, but then further explorations revealed underneath there were the remains of six smaller and older temples that pre-dated the Aztec temple. You can visit this outdoor museum today on the zocalo at the Museo del Templo Mayor.

At one end of the zocalo you will find the Metropolitan Cathedral, the largest cathedral of the Americas. Construction began in 1573 and wasn't completed for another 300 years. The side chapels offer visitors a chance to make offerings to patron saints. The National Palace is also in the zocalo, begun in 1693, and was once the home of the Viceroy of New Spain, today murals by Diego Rivera grace its walls.

Also in the Centro Historico, you can visit some rather unusual museums. There is the Beer Museum, opened by Corona, which depicts the history of this beverage. Also in the area, you may stumble upon the Museo del Calzado, the Shoe Museum which displays a large private collection of footwear dating back to the nineteenth century. On a more sober note, you may want to visit Memorial 68, a museum which explores the events of 1968 in the run-up to the Olympic games when student protestors were killed by police in Tlatelolco.

Near the centre of the city is a large urban park called Chapultepec, or 'grasshopper.' Here, there are lakes, a zoo, and the Castillo de Chapultepec, an 18th century plaza with beautiful grounds that served as home to the Mexican President until 1939, and now serves as the Museo Nacional de Historica. Also in the park is the National Museum of Anthropology, one of the most extensive museums of its kind in the world. One of the museum's prize exhibits is the Monkey Cup, polished to obsidian hardness by what must have been generations of owners.

In Xochimilco, you can take a trajineras, a kind of gondola through historic Aztec irrigation channels. Another point of interest is the Museo Casa Luis Barragan, the home of self-trained Mexican architect Luis Barragan who was influenced by European Modernism and guided by principles of promoting serenity when he designed his buildings.

Mexico City Accommodation Guide

Throughout Mexico City, you will surprised by many discoveries. The city is rich in culture and history, including a cultural dance troupe which holds impromptu performances throughout the city on a regular basis. There are also numerous markets and shopping areas to engage visitors in this great sprawling city.


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