- Exploring the Colonio Centro: In Mexico City's Historic Center, faded paintings and worn stone carvings of the Templo Mayor reflect religious rites once celebrated at this Aztec temple. Stone goddesses and mysterious masks recovered from the ruins lie in the neighboring Museo del Templo Mayor. Nearby, Spanish conquistadors left their mark in the intricate spires of the Metropolitan Cathedral. And it's a delight to contemplate the city's bygone empires on evening strolls through the Zócalo, or plaza, a treasure trove of medieval Mexican architecture.
- Visiting "The Blue House": A pilgrimage to the house of Frida Kahlo, today the Museo Frida Kahlo, is a moving highlight. It's been preserved to look very much the way it did when she lived there, with the art she collected and some that she made; you'll even see the artificial leg the artist had to use after a horrific bus accident to get around.
- Floating Through Xochimilco: Known as the "Floating Gardens," more than 50 miles of canals lace this area of the city, bordered by historic houses and lush green spaces. On weekends, families rent brightly painted boats known as trajineras for picnics with music. Mariachis ply their own boats, and will play a few songs of your choice for a few pesos.
- Shopping: Browse the 12 city blocks of Mexico City's Zona Rosa, where windows display antiques, jewelry, and boutique clothing. Heavy silver bangles, leather jackets, and brightly painted tiles are especially prominent. City markets buzz with locals shopping for the day's produce and household items. The Mercado de la Merced snakes through the city's historic center and includes hundreds of vendors selling luscious tropical fruits, spices, and colorful shawls and table linens.
- Enjoying an Evening of Music: Mariachi bands stroll Plaza de Garibaldi, performing traditional boleros or ranchera music on oversized guitars and brass instruments. The meticulously-dressed musicians, clad in black jackets, silver buttons and straw hats, epitomize the romance of rural Mexico while an audience of locals sip coffee at outdoor cafés.
- Enjoying an Evening of Dance: Traditional regional dance is performed at Ballet Folklórico de México, filling the stage with the finest dancers, whose vibrant skirts swirlaround their ankles.
- Restaurant-Hopping: Mexico City has some of the best restaurants in the Americas. The San Angel neighborhood's modest, traditional restaurants fill the air with the scents of slow-roasted pork, simmering onions, and sautéed peppers. The Polanco area updates traditional dishes, blending indigenous ingredients like cactus and yucca flowers with light, modern cooking techniques. The Centro Histórico draws crowds of locals and tourists alike to Mexico City's most popular restaurants, serving cuisine from every corner of the globe.
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