The last stop of my first trip to Mexico has been to its capital. The biggest city in the world. I read a lot about it to get my head around and still I was completely and totally smashed by its vastness. I am usually good at finding my way around but here, for the first time in my life, it took me more than two days to assemble the pieces in my head.
I spent the view hours I had there between exploring the city’s landmarks, meeting lovely people, enjoying street food (I did not get sick!), and some time out in Xochimilco. The time couldn’t have been spent better. I saw some of Mexico City’s many facets – and still haven’t seen anything.
Let me emphasis one thing . We Europeans have a lot of prejudices when it comes to Mexico. All we see (and all the media emphasises) is crime, drugs, homicides and corruption. I am not denying problems. But Mexico is a HUGE country with even more contrasts. It is a country full of contradictions. That’s best reflected in the fact that some of this world’s poor as well as the world’s richest man call Mexico home. The Museum of Anthropology is one of the finest. The ‘Bosque de Chapultepec’ is not only the green lung but also one of the largest city parks in the Western Hemisphere. Xochimilco, with it’s 170km long canal system, likes to refer to itself as Mexico’s Venice. Around the ‘Paseo de la Reforma’ you find some of the capitals hippest neighourhoods. The boulevard was modeled after the great boulevards in Europe, like the Ringstraße in Vienna or the Champs-Élysées in Paris. And those are just the most visible contradictions. I have not enough words that would do this richness justice.
Mexico City is a composition of contrasts and so is the whole country.