Zocalo Mexico City is the heart of the capital and its name too means ‘base’. I walked to this grand plaza on a Sunday from the Pino Suaréz metro station. That way I could catch some vibes and check out the Museo de la Cuidad de México.
I’m glad I did take this route because on my way down I came across a parade. It was election time when I went and so different groups marched the streets of Mexico, starting out from Zócalo.
At first I thought it was football fans, as they sang songs, blew whistles and banged drums with similar unity to club fanatics. And like football fans, they had a police escort keeping a close eye.
I continued my walk to find that there was an event promoting health and well-being at the Zócalo. This plaza is often used for community events and gives the city a real sense of activism.
Zocalo Mexico City is one of the world’s largest plazas, measuring 240m x 240m. The enormous Mexican flag in the centre is raised and lowered ceremoniously every day. The plaza holds concerts by renowned bands such as Mexico’s Cafe Tacuba and in 2007, photographer Spencer Tunick had approximately 18000 people bare all for a photo that set an new nudism world record.
On my trip I was also lucky enough to witness a display of Lucha Libre. These masked gladiators performed acrobatic fights whilst enthusiastic spectators cried jokingly “matalo, matalo”… “kill him, kill him”.
More activities were on offer and it was heart warming to see so many kids and families involved.
On the other hand, I did see one kid whose work ethic was both heart warming and wrenching at the same time. She was helping her mother sweep up after the parade that went by.
There are many attractions walking distance from Zócalo. There is the Nacional Monte de Piedad which serves as a market, the Catedral Metropolitana, the Palacio Nacional and the Museo Nacional de Arte to name a few.
Street vendors are rife and some of the busiest streets I have ever seen feed of this centre.
Zocalo Mexico City is one of the most alive city centres that I have ever been to, and it is not like most where tourists are the majority. You can blend in easily and be part of this socially mobile city.