At a glance

City Overview Arriving over Mexico City, the view from the window of the airplane offers a myriad of streets, buildings and open spaces encircled by mountains and snow-capped volcanoes which barely contain this expansive urban mass.

In fact, the City was founded on the beds of several lakes, where today 20 million inhabitants live in a constant hustle and bustle that can be seen in the multiple activities which unfold in its streets: vehicles in perpetual motion, hordes of pedestrians, street-corner restaurants and hawkers of every sort. This scenario plays host to the poverty of many of its inhabitants, but also to the luxury and refinement of others.

The rich diversity of activities and cultural opportunities available in the city are reflected in its bounteous urban edifices which range from the gracious to the grotesque, the majesty of which is conferred upon them both by their centuries-old heritage or by their modern audacity which, without a doubt, will provide endless sources of inspiration for keen photographers.

Since its foundation in 1325, Mexico City has had a vocation for grandeur which has encompassed not only centuries of change, with sometimes radical outward manifestations, but which has also shown a sense of purpose that has transcended political limitations and has forged ancient settlements and created cities from dust. Some call it the D.F, the abbreviation for the Federal District, while others simply call it Mexico, as if the entire country could squeeze in within its streets. This confirms an important concentration of services in the city, with sectors of the population coming originally from all regions of the country, as well as a sizeable population of foreigners, both residents and tourists, who together make Mexico City the cosmopolitan metropolis that it is.

It is quite amazing that, in spite of the city's size, many attractive areas can be toured on foot, affording pleasant and rewarding moments: colorful markets emerge from the gray urban backdrop, and ethereal monuments and stately mansions loom above street corner taco stands and dirty streets. Be prepared for a city that has brought together native Indian hustle and bustle and European nostalgia, garnished with highly spiced local dishes, mariachis, and a pulsating tropical beat.

Whether for pleasure or on business, any visit will be more successful when based on practical information and orientation which is demanded by every traveler who abandons the virtual world to navigate through reality. A map can also be useful.

Have a nice trip