Exploring Mexico’s Capitol city for the first time.
  • Day6

    The City of Castles

    March 6 in Mexico ⋅ ⛅ 64 °F

    What a treat to be in México City. The first three days were difficult on the lungs, not because of the smog but the altitude. Over 7,000ft above sea level. Sleeping was difficult and so was climbing the three floors to the room.
    This city of (from an expanded point of view) 22 million people is actually easy to get around and relaxed. I get up somewhat early and go for a walks. There are very few people about. Its not ‘til 10AM that the shops open and the activity really starts. Once it wakes up, watch the F out! Its like stepping on an ant hill. No matter what day, it just gets so crowded by 2PM.
    Our dining has been varied, street tacos (yum). Renowned Chef (yum). Pizza (yum). Sushi (not the best). Free breakfast in the mornings, what a concept. Love it.
    So far we have done the Zoo, Museums, gentrified neighborhoods, Farmers’ Market. Wait, Farmers’ market was unreal. I have been to a lot of markets and this by far was the largest. Taiwan the most interesting, but México City is by and large the biggest I have experienced. Outside of the fresh veg, meat, spices, popup restaurants and happy people, one can find everything that you can find in any market throughout the world. Plastic garbage toys, fake tennis shoes and fake everything else. It’s amazing in its volume. And sad that this is what it takes for so many of these lovely people to survive. I do ask myself over and over again, who is buying this stuff?
    The 1985 earthquake is still very evident here. Buildings still boarded up, leaning, plaster about to fall from walls many feet above the sidewalks, uneven sidewalks. It goes on and on. We as humans are resilient and it shows here.
    As few small observations before I close this out.
    1. In 1950 the population of México City was just under 3.2M. In 2020 it was assumed to be in excess of 22M.
    2. Most of what is now México City used to be Lake Texcoco, which is better known as the lake surrounding Tenochtitlán. That city was a wonderful creation of the Aztecs. Once the Spanish arrived, the lake was drained to allow for growth. This allowed México City to become the behemoth that it is today.
    3. Today, like many other cities, México City survives on its aquifer. The aquifer is being depleted way faster than the rains can replenish it. In large part due to urbanization of the region and the lack permeable soil. So the city is running out of water.
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  • Day1

    So close… so why not?

    March 1 in Mexico ⋅ ⛅ 73 °F

    If you’ve been following our other trip, you’ve seen our Baja California overlanding adventures from North to South. (Well, you’ve mostly seen our friend Derick’s adventures, but we’re usually there too. 🙂)

    We spent 6 days at a lovely condo just outside San José del Cabo watching cow & calf whales play, checking out the art district in SJdC, and generally loving life. A bit over our budget but we’d built up a surplus with the camping and more affordable accommodations along the way. 😉

    Donny happened to see that it’s only a 2+ hour flight from Cabo to México City and with prices just under $200 each round trip, we were sold!

    Dropped off the pickup truck at a storage place near the airport recommended by friend (for an extra $10, they’ll detail the whole thing!). Breezed through security for domestic flights and managed to hit the VIP lounge for one drink and a small breakfast sammich before boarding our VivoAerobus flight. (Thanks to Priority Pass via AmEx!)

    Very efficient (and polite!) boarding, onboard service, and especially deplaning. Everyone stays seated until their block of 3 rows is up next. And then calmly stands, gets their baggage and deplanes. Basically the polar opposite of flying pretty much anywhere else we’ve been.

    I only got us lost in the airport once trying to find the Metro station exit (note that the Metrobus and Metro logos are muy similar) and then this wonderful young gentleman tried to help us get a metro cards before he just paid for us to go thru the turnstile in his card. So nice!

    The metro here does NOT mess around! You better be ready to get on/get off or those doors are gonna get you, and no warning if frequent stops and starts between stations so hold on! A 30-min+ ride later (~25 cents each!), we emerged into Ciudad de México’s Centro Histórico.

    And the adventure begins…
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