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Zocalo is also known as the Constitution Square (La Plaza de la Constitucion). It is the main square of the Mexico City. Spread over 57,600 square meters of area, it is one of the largest squares in the world. In the early colonial period, it served a variety of purposes, including as a bullfighting arena and market. At present, the square is used for festivals, parades, and demonstrations. Home to the three most visited sites of the Mexico City-the Metropolitan Cathedral, Templo Mayor, & the National Palace, the Zocalo should definitely be added in every travelers itinerary.
The National Museum of Anthropology
The National Museum of Anthropology is located in the Chapultepec Park. Built in 1964, the museum is famous for its magnificent displays of old Indian art treasures, most notably in the Central Patio, part of which is roofed by a gigantic stone shelter. It is supported by an 11-meter-tall column with waterfalls symbolizing the eternal cycle of life. As spectacular as the building is its vast collection, which includes archaeological finds from extinct Indian cultures along with details of the lifestyles of contemporary Indian inhabitants of Mexico. Other highlights include the National Library of Anthropology, founded by Lucas Alaman in 1831 and developed by Emperor Maximilian, which boasts more than 300,000 rare volumes.
The enormous cathedral on the North side of the Zocalo was built over a period of 250 years and has a mixture of architectural styles. Like many buildings in the historical center of the city, it is slowly sinking into the ground. An extensive engineering project was undertaken in the 1990s to rescue the building, not to stop the sinking, but to ensure that the cathedral would sink uniformly. Take a tour to the bell tower (offered several times each day) to enjoy the view of the plaza and rooftops from above.
The Frida Kahlo Museum
A bright blue museum referred to as La Casa Azul (The Blue House) is dedicated to the life and work of one of Mexico’s most celebrated artists, Frida Kahlo. The artist was born, grew up and ultimately died within the walls of this blue house. It was donated by her husband with the aim of turning it to a museum in his wife’s honor. The decor of the house has been kept intact even today. The museum, which not only offers a collection of Kahlo’s artwork as well as that of her husband Diego Rivera and of other artists, but also offers artifacts, photographs and personal items, portraying the reality of Kahlo’s life amidst Mexican art. Look out for the helpful audio tour to guide you through the house.