‘Paseo de la Reforma’ is a street in Mexico City. It’s a large boulevard the cuts through the heart of the business district. The hotel I stayed in is on this street. I stayed at The Sheraton. To be honest, I was unsure if this was a good area but now that I’m here I want to tell you that it is…
‘Paseo de la Reforma’ is where you’ll find the ‘Angel De La Independencia.’ This iconic roundabout and the angel can be seen from the offices and hotels surrounding the roundabout. It’s also famous. It’s in every major Mexican soap opera and movie that’s set in Mexico City. It’s what we call an ‘identifier.’
This street reminds me of New York City’s hustle and bustle with its immensely tall skyscrapers and herds of people and traffic.
At walking distance you will, not only find the Angel of Independence, but you’ll also find one of the major gay neighborhoods of Mexico City, La Zona Rosa, literally across the street from the angel.
If you walk down the street you will find, restaurants, liquor stores and coffee shops. If you continue walking you will eventually end up at ‘Parque de la Hormiga’ (or Park of the Ants)… This is where ‘Paseo de la Reforma’ turns into a pedestrian only street (at least on weekends). Here you will find amazing public structures. You’ll also find The Museum of Anthropology, The Museum of Modern Art The Contemporary Art Museum, Chapultepec’s Castle, botanical gardens and venders galore. You’ll find anything from candies to sunglasses to basic souvenirs. On the weekends this place gets extremely busy. The museums are free on Sundays but get ready to brace the crowd. Its worth the walk. It’s worth it to take in the
architecture, the art and the beautiful display of public sculptures.
I exited the Sheraton and braced the traffic at the traffic circle. I was going to get to that angel even if it killed me. However, at this point I literally thought that was just an expression. The traffic changes after each traffic light cycle and you, literally, have no clue which side the cars will come at you. If I remember correctly, pedestrians have no right in Mexico. I waited for traffic to clear before I darted towards the center of the traffic circle. I dodged cars because my life actually depended on it. I saw others making the same dart just to take a ‘selfie’ with this amazing monument.
This life threatening adventure just to get a few pictures of this iconic angel… Was it worth it? Yes. This angel sits on top of a giant obelisk with an ornate foundation. There were professional photographers taking pictures of people getting married and ‘quinzcenieras’ in their giant puffy gowns. After a few snaps of my camera I was ready to stare death in the face again. I looked at my enemy and studied its behavior. I darted across the street again and waited for several cars to pass by in front of me before continuing my run for the sidewalk.
At this point my goal was to make it to the park about a mile down the road. I walked by countless pedestrians. Lots of teens and young adults wearing an assortment of clothing.
I meandered towards the park not knowing that there is also a center divider wide enough for pedestrians to walk on. As I reached the gates to the park and entered the sea of people having a great Sunday walk with their families, I saw ice cream venders, street performers, couples holding hands, gay couples sharing secrets, clowns gathering crowds.
Directly in front of me is an amazing monument. A black and white marble-looking monument. A main statue in the middle and several pillars in the back. It was incredible. I had no idea Mexico City was this beautiful.
There were statues of lions on either side of me, as if to guard the main entrance. The park was lush with greenery. I could hear laughter and happiness around as the humidity of the city dampened my shirt.
As I looked behind me I could see the ‘Angel De La Indpendencia’ in the distance. This wide boulevard is very European. The urbanism of this city is something to boast about.