Visit Mexico City and bring a USB travel adapter
Once known for its crime, rather than a great place to visit, Mexico City has transformed itself and re-branded. Originally called Distrito Federal, or more commonly, “DF”, the new name is Ciudad de Mexico, which means Mexico City funnily enough! It is the capital of Mexico and is located at an elevation of 2,250m on a plateau in the Valley of Mexico and has a population of over 21 million!
Having reinvented itself, it’s now a top destination once more, so pack you USB travel adapter and head to the home of tequila!
Mexico City airport is the busiest in Latin America, handling 42 million passengers in 2016, with flights from all over the world and a new airport is planned, with a capacity of 120 million annually! By any standards, that is a huge number. Once you have arrived, the city has a metro, rail and bus services that can get you into the city.
After you’ve settled into your hotel and charged your smartphone with your USB travel adapter, you’ll want to explore and find the sites.
Most famous of all is the Templo Mayor, which means main temple, is a 13th-century Aztec temple located in the heart of the Centro Historico. The original temple was built in 1325 in the Lake Texcoco marshes as the main temple of the Aztec capital city Tenochtitlan, which became Mexico City. Only parts of the original building remain as it was destroyed by the Spanish to build a cathedral in its place in 1521, but there is plenty to see and a museum with many exhibits.
The Centro Historico should definitely be on your list of places to visit. It’s built around the Zocalo Plaza which can hold almost 100,000 people and contains a number of important buildings, mostly built between the 16th and 20th centuries. Of particular interest is the Palacio de Bellas Artes which although a relatively modern building having been completed in 1934 is interesting for its art nouveau exterior and art deco interior, as well as its art exhibitions.
Still in the Centro Historico, the Palacio National fills in an entire side of the Zocalo Plaza with its 200m red tile facade. Built on the site of Aztec buildings, the palace uses many building materials from the original. Much of the interior is open to the public, but it is a government building and houses some government offices.
Of course, we can’t talk about Mexico and not mention tequila and you won’t be surprised to hear that there is a tequila museum in Mexico City. A tour will give you information on the different types of tequila and mescal, plus there is a bar and a cantina. The museum is located near Plaza Garibaldi which is famous for its roaming mariachi bands. At any time of day, there will be several mariachi bands playing or touting for business from visitors. Pay them a few pesos and they’ll play a tune for you.
One of the best excursions from Mexico City is a trip to Teotihuacan, about an hours drive away. The name means City of the Gods in the Aztec language and the site is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Centre. It is dominated by two pyramids and although the Aztecs named it, they didn’t build it. The city was already in ruins when the Aztecs discovered it and had been built hundreds of years before their arrival.
Coyoacan is the arty, bohemian centre of Mexico City and until the 1850s it was still a separate community from the city. Nowadays, it still feels like a small village with cobbled streets linking the many squares and parks scattered through the borough. It’s definitely worth a visit to check out the markets and try some authentic Mexican street food.
There is so much more to explore in Mexico City, just remember to keep your smartphone and camera charged with your handy USB travel adapter from SublimeWare.