Xochimilco, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, located only 30-40 minutes south of Mexico City, has a network of canals. A lazy boat ride will take you through the canals which may remind you of Venice. The Mexican touch comes in when you spot vibrantly colored boats, Mariachi singers and vendors on boats selling tacos and corn.
We got an entire boat to ourselves so we could stop and do what we please. Our guide tried explaining everything in Spanish and we understood only 50%. With that in mind, anything written below might be half correct. 😉
The painted trajinera (boat) took us around the floating town at a leisurely pace. The city Tenochtitlan (now Mexico DF) was apparently fed by agriculture from this area in pre-historic times. The charm of pre-hispanic culture still remains buried underneath the shallow waters but the modernization of the canals through engineering feats like lock-gates, etc. have kept it alive. The lazy river ride brought forth several encounters with the street vendors with whom you’d be better off not buying anything lest you be ripped severely. Some of the bridges and houses will remind the ignorant of European architecture, before being told that Europeans stole these from here.
Enjoy the ride as much as you can, before you get back to the mundane city life. This is the one hour that you’d have believed that the real pace of life can actually be this slow. To me that 1 hour seemed like an eternity, but when the tour ended, it reminded me of the times we should actually put everything else to bed and stay awake giving the brain some time back to relax.
Location Tips –
GPS Address: Blvd Adolfo Ruíz Cortinez (Periférico Sur) N/A, Xochimilco, Unidad habitacional aztlán, 16034 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Once in the city, you will find multiple places offering Boat Rides. But go to the above address, and find parking. Parking rates range from MXN $40 to MXN $50 for the entire stay. Official rates for boat rides are MXN $350 per person. But the folks in the Embarcadero will offer different tours at random prices. Bargain shamelessly until you get them at $350 per person per hour or lower.
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