Monday, 5 January 2015

City in Review: Mexico City

Mexico is celebrated around the world for its vibrant culture, its combination of history, modernity and national beauty. It’s no surprise then that its capital, Mexico City, is becoming an ever more popular destination for expats in search of the excitement of city life, combined with all year round sunshine. 

Image Source: Creative Commons/ Tristan Higbee

Mexico City is becoming more and more defined by its huge population; now a classified mega-city, its population was estimated at 21.2 million in 2014.  As such a populated city, it offers a rich and diverse cultural landscape which varies across its different districts.

The culture of the city is rooted in its historic origins; remnants of Aztec culture and the influence of Spanish colonisation and Roman Catholicism are concealed within Mexico City’s language, architecture, festivals, and wealth of artworks. 

Mexico City offers many museums through which you can explore these artefacts, with the Dolores Olmedo Museum and the house in which Frida Kahlo lived among the top tourist attractions.  A significant element of Mexico City’s culture is its street food – boasting some of the worlds most varied and delicious delicacies, street food offers a cheap and delicious way of meeting local communities.

Image Source: Creative Commons/ Michael McCarty

Most expats living in Mexico City confirm that while it is possible to get by without knowing Spanish (the city’s official language), to truly enjoy everything Mexico City has to offer it is worthwhile making the commitment to learning Spanish.  Newcomers to Mexico City comment that locals are very encouraging and helpful when you are trying to pick up the language, and will humour you to help you along.

Expats living there have said that the friendliness of locals is a big reason as to why their experience has been so enjoyable.  Our 2014 Expat Explorer survey revealed that 61% of expats living in Mexico found it easy to make friends with the locals, and many also associated the country as being a friendly place. 

As such a big city with many different neighbourhoods, being faced with the decision of where to settle down may be somewhat overwhelming.  Different parts of Mexico City suit the needs of different lifestyles; the fashionable Centre-South of Mexico City boasts a range of boutiques and trendy caf├ęs, whilst the North of the city hosts the best schools. 

Image Source: Creative Commons/ Justin Vidamo

If you’re an expat living in Mexico City you can share your top tips about this amazing city here  

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