Mexico City is the capital of the United Mexican States. Though it is classified as the 6 largest of cities in the world with a population of more than 21 million, it has a historical background too. Mexico City is the largest Spanish speaking city in the world and is also known as Mexico, D.F. (Distrito Federal).
A historical past:
It is said that the city was discovered by the Aztecs somewhere around in the year 1325. The original name of Mexico City was a tongue twister of a name, Tenochtitlan. It was actually an island city located in the center of a lake. This was an indigenously built city with causeways and bridges being the main connection to the mainland. These bridges were unique in the sense that they could be dismantled at will to allow the Aztecs to defend themselves when at war. This city remained the capital of the Aztec Empire until the Spanish captured it in 1521. This makes it one of the oldest capitals in the American continent.
Free from Spanish influence:
Much of the old city was destroyed during the campaign. However the Spanish rulers rebuilt it by preserving the basic layout. The Aztec temples were replaced by the Catholic churches and the city was given a new name, Ciudad de Mexico (Mexico City). The city gained independence from Spain in the year 1824.
The major credit for developing Mexico City should go to Porfirio Diaz who has been the longest serving President of Mexico. He was instrumental in building many schools, factories as well as hospitals.
A huge proportion of Catholics:
More than 80% of the Mexican population is Catholic and hence there should be mention of the â€œMetropolitan Cathedral of the Assumption of Mary of Mexicoâ€. This is reputed to be the largest cathedral in Latin America. Mexico City has most probably the largest number of museums in the world out of which the most famous is the â€œNational Museum of Anthropologyâ€. The â€œTemplo Mayorâ€ built in the center of the city by the Aztecs has also been converted into a museum.
Here is a compilation of some interesting facts about Mexico City which is fun to know.
- Mexico City is reported to sink every year by at least 4 inches. This is proved by the sloping floors as well as a swinging pendulum in the Cathedral.
- More than six hundred thousand Americans live in Mexico City making it the biggest concentration of the Americans outside of the U.S.
- The main mode of transport is the metro which is also quite cheap. The traffic is said to be so heavy that the super rich people commute to work using their helicopters.
- The highest number of IMAX theaters in the world is in Mexico City.
- Mexico City has the reputation of being the only city in South America to have hosted the Summer Olympics (1968).
- The present day’s 3rd richest man in the world Carlos Slim lives in Mexico City.
- In the olden days Mexico City was notorious for being referred to as the most polluted city in the world. Now things have changed for the better.
- When it rains in Mexico City, it pours and is never said to stop soon.
- Till recently, the crime rate in Mexico City was the highest in the world. The city also had a ratio of 1:100 as far as police officers to residents are concerned.
- Since 2010 same sex marriages have become legal in Mexico City. This is a surprising fact as majority of the Mexico City residents are Catholics.
- The 20th best restaurant in the world is in Mexico City.