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Stop 22 - Mexico City

Of course in Mexico, you know the Mexicans, they eat a lot of Mexican food...

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View Waite World Tour on carlagregory's travel map.

Hola y Bienvenidos a la Cuidad de Mexico. Mi nombre es Carla y yo no entiendo Espanol....but who cares?!

After what seemed like forever on planes we have arrived in Mexico with our first stop being Mexico City. 25 million people living here makes for a very vibrant and energetic city! There is always something going on and crowds everywhere. So much history right at your fingertips.

So far I have been stuck in an elevator here more times than I have in my entire life, eaten more tacos than I probably would in an entire year and feel very unfashionable. But enough about me.

We have stayed in the Reforma neighbourhood just outside of Centro Historico. Everything is within walking distance and much to James's dismay we have been walking around almost every day.

The architecture in downtown Mexico City is absolutely stunning! Beautiful ornate churches alongside colonial buildings and then just for something different, an Aztec ruin thrown in the middle of it all. The old mixes with the new very well. Another thing to mention is the number of statues and monuments everywhere!! I can walk outside of the hotel right now and see 3 different statues and two monuments in the centre of roundabouts - I'm in the middle of the CDB!

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There are some great self guided walking tours online which take you through various spots in the city. We followed one to down town Mexico City where we visited the Zocalo, the metropolitan cathedral and the Mayor Temple (just to name a few). The cathedral is very elaborate inside and out. Lots of gold everywhere, lots of shrines, a huge organ in the centre, bell towers and high ornate ceilings. It was very beautiful to look at. They were also holding an expo on the Shroud of Turin which we took a look through. Everything was in Spanish and as "yo no entiendo espanol" had no idea what any of it meant. According to the lady at the ticket counter it was a display discussing the shroud and some of the theories proving or disproving its authenticity. I would have thought for a Catholic church they wouldn't be showing things that might prove its actually fake. This is one of the churches most prized possessions that many of their congregation flock to see because they believe it is real....hmmmm....maybe I need to learn some Spanish.

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But who needs Spanish when you have Netflix! We arrived in Mexico City and were incredibly jet lagged and suffering from Altitude. So we hunkered down in our hotel room for some sleep and to check out what awesome Netflix shows we had access to now we're in Mexico. One of them was a documentary on Monetzuma. For those of you who don't know he was the 9th Aztec emperor and was imprisoned by the Spaniard Cortez. Right in the middle of the city is Mayor Temple which was one of the main temples for the Aztecs in their capitol city of Tenochtitlan. The guy hosting the documentary spoke a lot about it and as a result we decided to search for it. This time it didn't matter that we didn't speak Spanish because doco guy had given Adam and I all the info we needed which we then passed on to James and a disinterested Lucas. Quite an impressive site sitting in the middle of multi-storey buildings. You'd walk past it if you weren't looking for it.

Next on the list was a trip in the opposite direction that went to Chupultepec park, the anthropology museum and the children's museum. The anthropology museum is fantastic! As you walk in you are greeted by this amazing sculptural fountain that is very impressive. Around the fountain are rooms that have fantastic displays about each group of people from across the region eg/ Aztecs, Toltec etc. At the end of each room you reach an outdoor area where they have set up areas to show you what their buildings and / or artwork looked like. All round a very interesting experience.

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The children's museum was an unexpected surprise. Initially heading in we thought it looked a bit shit and questioned why we had paid so much to get in. Three and a half hours later we left but could have stayed for another hour or so. This place is incredibly interactive and its more like a scienceworks or questacon than a museum. We made rockets that then got shot up into the air using an air compressor. We made catapults out of pegs and dowel and then got to test them. There was sooooo much stuff going on it was just brilliant. We also had a planetarium show and a movie at IMAX included in the ticket. No entiendo espanol?? No problemo! Just watch the movies and don't listen - they're still very entertaining without sound.

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If you don't want to follow a tour you can just make your own way around as we did on Saturday and found the art market which is right by a park where everyone had gathered for dancing. I don't think it was a special event; I think they just gather there every weekend for some fun times. There are also people teaching dancing - we didn't join in but it looked like a lot of fun.

The food has been amazing with so many food trucks parked down the street next to our hotel. We have been eating the most amazing tacos that cost 20 Pesos for 5....that's AU$1.40....ridiculous!!
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Today is our last day in Mexico city and we headed to the Teotihuacán complex. It was about an hours drive out of the city and we arrived shortly after it opened at 8am. Our first destination was the pyramid of the sun as we wanted to climb it well before the crowds arrived. This pyramid is the 3rd largest in the world after the great pyramid of Giza and the great pyramid at Cholula. It stands 75m high which is just over half the height of the great pyramid of Giza. If any of you have ever chatted with me about Egypt you would have heard me say that if I went I think I'd be disappointed with the size of the pyramids. Everyone raves about how big they are and I feel as though I'd get there and go "meh, they're not that big...." as per my visit to the big pineapple and our swim with the whale sharks. However, I have to take back my words. After seeing todays pyramid and imagining how big the pyramid in Giza would be, I'd say they would be pretty big and it is possible I wouldn't be disappointed. But I digress....

We climbed the pyramid and after catching our breath took in the wonderful view. Also climbing the pyramid was a local dog who was completely showing off and had run up and down twice by the time I made it to the top. After making our way down we then headed to the smaller pyramid of the moon. We were not allowed to climb all the way to the top on this one but we were still granted an amazing view from level we were allowed to reach. The final pyramid in the complex is the temple of the feathered serpent. You're not allowed to climb this one at all but it does have a fancy, impressive façade.

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Unfortunately my surface has decided to have a hissy fit and is not uploading all the photos! So until I can fix the problem (Yes, I've tried turning it off and on again...) there are limited photos available for your perusal on here.

Tomorrow we head to Puebla which is a couple of hours outside of Mexico City and more of a traditional Mexican city with the cobblestone streets and lots of colour. From here we will take a day trip to Cholula so I might be taking back my words on the Giza pyramids after I see the biggest one in the world!!

Until next time xx

Posted by carlagregory 16:26 Archived in Mexico

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