This 18th century fairy tale "castle" stands atop a hill in the middle of the Bosque de Chapultepec with stunning views of the city. Previously serving as an imperial residence, the palace is now a museum exhibiting beautiful artwork from Catholic Mexico and preserved living quarters from imperial times. The Castillo is open for visits, but beware, it's a long uphill road to reach the palace. Fortunately, there is a little bus to transport people (for a small fee).
This is the ancient forest from the times of the Aztecs, even longer, that is now preserved as a heritage for Mexicans. I find it hard to see how it could remind locals and visitors alike of the Aztec environment if they were not told of the significance of the area.
In addition to the Anthropology Museum, there are many more sights to see at Chapultepec Park. This is an enormous public park that includes lakes, monuments, sporting fields, vendors, and vast green spaces for pleasant relaxation. The city's main zoo is located here along with the Modern Art Museum and the Rufino Tamayo Museum. You'll also find the Natural History Museum and technology museum and a children's museum as well as Maximillion's castle on top of Chapultepec Hill and the impressive Ninos Heroes monument that sits below it.
On 6th of july 1923, about 400 years after the destruction of Tenochtitlan, the construction of the Chapultepec Zoo began. For Mexicans, opening a zoological garden does have double significance, as zoos find there place in pre-hispanic Aztec history as well as they open a new door to education and getting to know how to respect mother nature.
The zoo counts with over 2000 animals of 200 species, divided into birds, mammals, amfibios amd reptiles.
The place in the woods of Chapultepec was chosen. Chapultepec means "Hill of the Grasshoppers" in nahuatl, the Aztec language of Mexico.
Many people believe that the Lago de Chapultepec is what remains of old Lago de Texcoco because Chapultepec lies on what used to be its shores, but in fact, this is an artificial lake. It was excavated in early 20th century as part of the remodeling ordered by President Porfirio Diaz. Boats have been available for hire since that time. During the months of February, March and April Swan Lake ballet has been performed on an island of this lake by the National Dance Company for the past 25 years.
Chapultepec, "at the grasshopper hill" in the Nahuatl language, is a large hill on the outskirts of central Mexico City with much significance in Mexican history. The hill of Chapultepec and surrounding land are now Chapultepec Park, a popular spot both for locals and tourists. The Castle atop the hill is a history museum. The park also includes 6 other museums, including a museum of modern art and the National Museum of Anthropology with its great collection of Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican art and artifacts. Chapultepec Park also includes a zoo and an amusement park. Also in this area you can find Los Pinos, home of Mexico's president.
The Chapultepec palace belonged to the Emperor Maximilian. It is a far cry from European royal palaces, but still rather nice. Inside there is a small historic museum, effects of Maximilian and Diaz, a lavish carriage used by the Emperor.
The views from its balcony are stunning.
Located in a vast zone comprising 730ha/1,800 acres, this historical forest, planted with tall ancient trees, has stood as a silent witness to the traditions and events that have occured here since pre-Hispanic times, when Lake Texcoco seperated this area from Tenochtitlan.
Chapultapec is the largest and oldest park in the Americas. Located in the middle of Mexico City, it is a nice escape from the endless traffic and honking of the city streets. The city is home to museums, markets, hiking paths, a giant lake (complete with boats you can rent to paddle around)a free zoo and much more. If you want to see the zoo in one day, bikes are available to rent.
If you visit Bosque de Chapultepec you have to visit El Castillo. It is such a great place with art and history. If you'd like to find see where the famous Battle of Chapultepec was fought who many different uses this fortress had, this will not disappoint you!
This massive park is Mexico City's equivalent to New York's Central Park. You can spend hours just strolling around the place and observe the Mexican enjoying the city with their families. It's better to visit this place during the weekend, especially on a Sunday when a few are in the Sunday best.
Zoológico de Chapultepec.
This zoo is practically the heart of the old forest of Chapultepec, because it has delighted to a good number of generations since Aztec Emperor Moctezuma before the Spanish conquest.
The zoo takes the name of the biologist Alfonso L. Herrera who had the initiative of his modern creation and its construction began in 1923 from a model inspired by the Rome zoo.
A few years ago the zoo has undergone a long-awaited landscaping, many people worked in it to provide a more natural and worthy habitat to the animals.
At the moment it exhibits around 200 species and near 2,000 animals and the enclosures are now as modern as anywhere in the world.
The zoo boasts the first panda born in captivity in the world and retains the distinction of being the only place outside China to have successfully born and bred Giant Pandas (at least naturally, several others now have test-tube pandas).
Castillo de Chapultepec.
Imposing and elegant, this castle perches on Bosque de Chapultepec and overlooks Mexico City.
Here, in pre-Hispanic times, the Aztecs located their temple in honor of Tlaloc, the rain god.
The tradition of Chapultepec Castle as a residence for Mexican rulers dates back to the 14th Century when Nezahualcoyotl, the Lord of Texcoco, ordered a palace to be built at the foot of the hill, together with certain hydraulic installations designed to take advantage of the natural springs which also occurred there.
Several Aztec rulers had their portraits carved into the rock of the hill, though most were destroyed by the Spanish soon after the Conquest.
The castle being constructed between 1785 and 1787 for Viceroy Conde de Galvez.
In the end of 18th century , a palace for viceroys was constructed on this historic site.
It became into a gunpowder plant and Military College, wich pupils offered a patriotic defense of the National Flag during the North American invasion in 1847.
Of all its occupants, the castle is best remembered as the home of the romantic and ill-fated couple, Emperor Maximilian von Hapsburg and his wife Carlota.
They renovated the castle, added the garden, the second floor and built the imperial living quarters known as the Alcazar to convert the Castle into a regal residential palace.
From her balcony, Carlota could watch Maximilian's royal carriage as it traveled down Emperor's Avenue (today Reforma Boulevard) to downtown Mexico City.
The Golden Age of the Castle came, however, during the government of Gral. Porfirio Diaz.
It was here that President Diaz had his noteworthy meeting with Creelman, the American journalist, which left the heavy ironwork doors ajar to the Revolutionary surge of 1910.
Finally, it was in 1939 when the President Lazaro Cardenas decreted the transformation of the Castle, from official residence into Museo Nacional de Historia (National Museum of History), inaugurated like so, the 27 of September of 1944.
Bosque de Chapultepec.
It is Mexico City's largest park and the site of numerous historical and cultural attractions.
Following the Spanish Conquest (1521), Hernán Cortés took possession of Chapultepec as part of his spoils and it subsequently served as a hunting preserve for the Viceroy de Velazco.
In 1530 it became a public park and the property of the local city council, and construction was initiated to rebuild the aqueduct needed to quench the thirst of the growing capital of the New Spain.
At the park's principal entrance is the 'Monumento a los Niños Héroes' (Monument to the Castle Defenders).
Supposedly buried in the monument are the six young cadets, one of them who wrapped themself in the Mexican flag and jumped to his death rather than surrender to the aggressors during the North American invasion in 1847...
For hundreds of years Chapultepec has been a focal point in this city of such tremendous population growth that an airy expanse of green is absolutely vital.
Bosque de Chapultepec is 2,100 acres/850 hectares of woods, small size lakes, hiking trails, playgrounds, botanical garden, amusement park, zoo, museums, one castle (the only one in whole American Continent) and nearby important concert hall.
The fact that much of the surrounding park is fenced off to recuperate, plus 'Los Pinos' (presidential house), surrounded by presidential guards' barracks makes it extremely difficult to walk from one side to the other, especially when you add the impossibility of crossing the Periférico motorway.
Main hotels are located just in front of the Park and close to important business areas like Reforma Boulevard or Sata Fe complex, and very attractive neighborhoods: Polanco and Condesa.
Designed originally as residential enclaves, today they bring together many interesting buildings, cultural centers and restaurants.
Fuente de Tláloc.
Just a really beautiful fountain.
It was designed and supervised in its construction (1952) by the painter Diego Rivera, after concluding 'El agua, origen de la vida' (The water, origin of the life).
The fountain consists of a bas-relief in mosaic tiles of natural colored stones, that represent Tláloc (Aztec rain and water god) leaving waters.
The best point to appreciate its beauty is being placed to ten meters height or more.
How do that?
I want to kwow too...
There are other fountains, constructed after the one of Tláloc and inaugurated latter, in 1964, on the perimeter of the tanks of water storage of the Lerma system, and well-known like 'Fuentes de las Serpientes' (Fountains of the serpents), because of its serpents shapes.
These 'serpents' are the ventilation chimneys of four great cisterns in which originating potable water of the same system was stored.