Cascade Park

Cascade Park

Friday, February 2, 2018

A Long Walk (Part One - Downtown)

Up until this point I had not taken any of the long walks that I usually take when I am in Mexico City... and my waistline is showing it.  Yesterday, after my visit to the Ciudadela Handicraft Market, I decide to take advantage of the sunny afternoon and do some walking.

I headed out of the market through the side door on Balderas Avenue.  I had never really noticed the building right across the street, a once magnificent structure, now sadly abandoned and defaced with graffiti.

I crossed the street and saw from the lettering above the doorway that it once housed the National Irrigation Commission.

It would be wonderful if this fine old building could be refurbished and put to some use once again.

I continued down Balderas Avenue toward the city center.  In the background is the colonial church of San Hipólito.

The vendors' stalls take up half of the sidewalk and make pedestrian traffic congested.

Valentine's Day gifts are for sale in some of the stalls.

After a few blocks I reached Juárez Avenue, the heart of downtown.  The Latin American Tower rises in the background.

I strolled through the Alameda Park.  A few years ago the park was renovated, and its numerous fountains are lovely.

The bandstand of the park, and beyond the Church of San Juan de Dios

This is one park that is practically litter free.  City employees keep it clean.

Behind the Alameda Park is this colonial building which was built in the 17th century as lodging for Augustinian friars. 

In the 20th century it became the Hotel de Cortés.  It was a "boutique hotel" long before that term existed.  I often thought that it would be a neat place to stay.  But on my last few trips it appeared closed, and I feared that it would be another case of an historic building being left empty and neglected.   However, as I took this picture I could see that there were workmen inside.  I  then read that the hotel is being remodeled, so hopefully it will once again be up and running.

Here's a closer view of the Church of San Hipólito.  

The church was completed in 1739, and commemorated the Spanish conquest of the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlán.  The final surrender of the Aztecs occurred on August 13, 1521, and August 13th is the Feast Day of St. Hippolytus in the Catholic calendar.  Today it is also the center of the veneration of San Judas Tadeo (St. Jude the Apostle), the patron saint of lost causes.  (He is also a favorite saint of Mexico's narcos.)

Heading back to Juárez Avenue, I continued to where it crosses the Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City's most famous boulevard.  Just before the intersection there is a piece of modern sculpture in the center of the avenue that I had never really noticed before. There were steps leading up its pedestal... a perfect spot for a photograph.  (In fact, there were some Mexicans taking pictures from there.)

So here is a picture looking back down Juárez Avenue.

And here is a picture looking in the opposite direction toward the intersection with the Paseo de la Reforma.

To the right is the National Lottery Building, and in the distance is the dome of the Monument to the Revolution. 

My long walk is not by any means over.

To be continued...


  1. You're enjoying the warmth and sunshine which you would NOT be enjoying here in BRRRrea!

    1. Finally we are getting back to normal with sunshine and pleasant afternoon temperatures. This has been the coldest winter I have ever experienced in Mexico City. Earlier this week schools were closed in higher parts of the city where the temperature dropped to 28 F.