Mesmerized by Mexico City

I had heard mixed reviews of Mexico City, the largest city in the world. Horrible pollution, awful crime, dirty. After spending two weeks in the city, I can't wait to go back!


Mesmerized by Mexico City

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

Mexico City has much to offer: unbelievable food, incredible musuems, stimulating art, culture, culture, and more culture. I believe the best part of this city is the people--very friendly, hospitable, and forgiving (especially if you don't know Spanish).${QuickSuggestions} Mexico City, like any big city, requires that you excerise some wisdom and discretion. Given that, enjoy. ${BestWay} Although I did drive late one night, I would not recommend renting a car in this city. They drive crazily but rather harmoniously at the same time; it's hard to explain. We took taxis (no green Beetles) everywhere. We only hired the cabs through licensed taxi companies. And make sure you establish a rate for where you want to go before you get in. Otherwise, you probably will be taken advantage of. Once in the city, like the Zona Rosa or Centro Historica areas, you pretty much can walk around wherever you wish to go. Just be careful, like you would in any big city like Chicago or N.Y.

Portaportese

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

We actually stumbled upon this treasure by intending to go to another restaurant at the same address that had previously closed. As we entered the lobby after exiting the elevator, the host tried to show us to a table. We soon realized that we were not in Petaluma, our intended choice for dinner. I asked for a menu and then the maitre d' came over, and things started to get a bit awkward. Not knowing the area and this being our first night in Mexico City, we decided to give it a try. And we were glad we did!

The food was exceptional, the service superb, and Jorge became our new best friend. We got pictures with the chef, the wait staff, and Jorge. He even recommended a couple of fine Cuban cigars for me and my compadre.

Portaportese
Masarik 513 P.A.
Mexico City, Mexico

Fonda Santa Clara

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

We made this restaurant our regular lunch destination, since it was within walking distance of the office. The cuisine is traditional Mexican/Puebla. The first day, I ventured out in my ordering to try a local favorite: tres moles. It was too rich for me, but it was an interesting sampling of fine beef smothered in three different types of moles. Over the course of our visits to this restaurant, we sampled soups, breads, chips, fish, beef, and various other Mexican concoctions. Superb!!
Fonda Santa Clara
Avenida San Jerónimo 775
Mexico City, Mexico, 10200
+52 5 5557 6144

Sanborn's

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

Sanborn's is a restaurant within a deparment store. Such eateries are not typically known for their dining experiences, but Sanborn's is a Mexico City exception. We ate breakfast at the Sanborn's in the Centro Historica district. They have about every kind of fresh-squeezed fruit juice you can imagine. I had guava, papaya, and orange juice all mixed together. And then I had my new favorite dish: chilaquiles. All in all, a very good meal.
Sanborns
Francisco Madero 73-7
Mexico City, Mexico
5510 3748

Avant Garde

Member Rating 3 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

Avant Garde is a big-city house club. They played house and techno music all night long. The decor consists of big oversized couches along the back wall and a small dance area up front. Everything is white. They also have an upstairs area for people who want to lounge and peer down on the dancin' crowd.
Avant Garde
Polanco
Mexico City, Mexico

La Ritual

Member Rating 2 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

La Ritual is a fun, kick-back bar. It had good music and a lot of tables for people to sit and people-watch and just enjoy being together after a long day's work. It seemed to be an after work hangout for more of the business crowd in Mexico City.
Ritual
Moliere 331
Mexico City, Mexico
+52 55 45 76 10

Museo Nacional de Antropologia

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

This is one of the top museums in the world and Mexico's pride and joy. The ground-floor rooms are devoted to history, and the upstairs rooms ethnographic features. In most areas, they even allow you to take pictures!
Museo Nacional de Antropología e Historia
Paseo De La Reforma Y Calzada Ghandi (colonia Polanco Chapultepec)
México, Mexico, 11560
52 5553 6266; +52 5

Pyramids of San Juan Teotihuacan

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

The ruins/pyramids of Teotihuacan are some of the most important ruins in the world today. This ancient city of 200,000 flourished with culture, commerce, and daily activites for ancient Mesoamerica before its inhabitants vanished without a trace. Teotihuacan means "where gods are born" and signifies the Aztec belief that the gods created the universe here.

You can hire a guide to show you around and give you some background history. We chose to venture off by ourselves. Be prepared to walk and walk--and sometimes run, as local "artisans" attempt to entice you with their tourist-trap gifts, which all three of us fell prey to. But it's fun to haggle a bit and feel like you got a good deal for your money.

Things to see:

**The Ciuadela

**Avenue of the Dead

**Pyramid of the Sun

**Pyramid of the Moon

**Palace of Quetzalpapalotl

Pirámides de Teotihuacan
Carretera México Teotihuacan Km. 46 (zona Arqueológica De Teotihuacan)
San Juan Teotihuacan, Mexico, 03010
+52 5 9560052

Palacio de National

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

This is where President Fox works. It is located downtown in the Centro Historica district near Zocalo. It is heavily guarded, but is also a tourist attraction. Inside is a beautiful courtyard; then, going up the stairs, is a spectacular mural painted by Diego Rivera. Ascend to the second floor, and more paintings and murals by Diego await you. Simply fascinating. Definitely worth the visit!
Palacio Nacional-National Palace
El Zocalo
México City, Mexico, 06060
+52 5 5420508

San Miguel de Allende

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

We took a long weekend and went to San Miguel de Allende (See my journal "I left my heart in San Miguel.") We took a "luxury bus" from Mexico City. It cost about $26 and took about 3 1/2 hours to get there. I am definitely going back. It was one of the most wonderful places I have ever been! Beauty, art, culture, great food and drink, and wonderful people!

Zona Rosa

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

Zona Rosa is an upscale part of Mexico City where you can find great restaurants, sports bars, jazz clubs, dance clubs (Freedom!), shopping, and museums. This is a must-do. We spent a few nights in this part of the city.

Coyoacan

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by retro210 on December 26, 2002

Coyoacan was described to me by one local as the SoHo of Mexico City. Very bohemian! It was also the city that housed such artists as Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. We went to tour their house the day we were there, but it was closed. Leon Trotsky also lived here for a season when he was exiled from the Soviet Union by Stalin. There is a main square/jardin that is highlighted by a cathedral, plus shopping on every street. Local artisans and musicians also migrate to this city.

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