1. Mexico City was once the second most populated city in the world, after Tokyo.
2. The central square of the city, commonly known as “Zocalo”, is the second largest on the planet. The plaza currently measures at 46,800 square meters.
3. Mexico City has the largest amount of museums in the Americas and the second largest amount in the world, after London. It has 186 officially recognized museums. It has more museums than Madrid, New York or Paris.
4. The citizens from this metropolis mostly get around on subway, bus, car or bike. ¼ of the population uses the subway every day. Mexico City’s system is the largest in Latin America and the cheapest in the world. Another popular mode of transportation is the bicycle. The city has a public bike service available in 42 suburbs in three boroughs out of the 16 that make up the capital.
5. No collection of facts would be complete without a mention of the city’s famous cuisine. In particular, local foodies know there is one place in town not to be missed − Pujol in the Polanco neighborhood. The eatery is widely regarded to be the best spot for Mexico City food and was even voted as the 20th best restaurant in the world in a recent poll.
6. Ixtaccihuatl, a dormant volcano situated on the México-Puebla state line in central Mexico, lies 40 miles (65 km) south-southeast of Mexico City and offers some of the best hiking in Mexico. Iztaccíhuatl (from the Nahuatl for “white woman”) has three snow-covered summits that resemble the head, breast, and feet of a reclining woman. Hence the popular designation of “sleeping woman” (Spanish – “mujer dormida”).
7. The Monarch butterfly migrates to Mexico every year – usually by the millions – from the U.S. and Canada, though logging operations are rapidly destroying their habitat.
8. If you need a break from the bustle, it takes only a short subway ride in to reach places where you’ll feel like you stepped back in time. Neighborhoods such as San Angel and Coyoacan (where artists Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo made their home) have cobblestone streets, beautiful buildings and quaint cafes that will give you a chance to catch your breath. And exploring these areas should be a priority when visiting Mexico City.
9. On November 22, every year, a very special gathering takes place in Mexico City’s famed mariachi square to pay homage to St. Cecilia, the patron saint of musicians. Mariachi’s, along with regional musicians from northern Mexico and the Gulf Coast state of Veracruz, descend on Plaza Garibaldi for a tribute concert and an open-air party that usually involves dance, drink and song. This is one of the most unique and special events in the Mexican holidays and festivals calendar.
10. The city was established by Spanish conquerors in the early 1500’s. And as a result, the city center has more than 1,500 gorgeous historic buildings, churches, cathedrals and plazas that are classified as historic or artist monuments. The historic center is also a designated UNESCO World Heritage List.