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Photo TR: WFChris's Mexico Trips!


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^The site I found is here, although it does not look like it's been updated for next year yet.

 

^^Thanks! I too am fascinated and would love to share some more pictures, just need to make sure some people here actually care! I figure it's a city we don't see too often here on TPR so perhaps there are more that are curious about this city that is so close to many of us yet so far away culturally.

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About 2 months after my trip with TPR, I took another quick trip to Mexico City to visit a friend and got food poisoning. We ended up going to the doctor to take care of it, and everything including prescriptions out the door was about $40 USD. This was my first experience with a doctor that was actually, you know, affordable.

 

Fast forward another month or so, and I have planned another week long visit to Mexico City! Yay! Airplane tickets purchased! That same night, I chipped my tooth on a life saver. Crap! So I made some phone calls, and it turned out that it was going to cost me about $900 - $1000 to fix my mouth. That's basically my Mexico budget. I'm screwed!!! What to do...what to do...

 

I suddenly remembered the whole doctor incident so I thought, 'well, why don't I see about getting my tooth fixed in Mexico?' I contacted some friends that live in Tijuana, they were on board, and the very next day, another adventure began!

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How often do you see the 5 this empty during the day? Better exit here...

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Yay! Didn't expect to be coming back this soon, but sometimes life is unpredictable.

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Hello, old friend!

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So yeah, I took care of business. It turns out I would have to stay the night, but the whole thing out the door was $122. Instead of $900 - $1000 just 1 mile north.

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Tijuana is definitely NOT Mexico City or Guadalajara, but it's...interesting. I'm glad I had local friends to say the very least.

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What does any self respecting coaster enthusiast do when the dentist appointment ends far earlier than anticipated? Credit time!!

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Mundo Divertido is about 2 miles into Tijuana, and is a very easy drive or cab ride from the border. We took this group taxi van thing that was $6 pesos each. That's about $0.50 USD

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They have 3 coasters, the Pinfari previously pictured, called Montaña Rusa (Spanish for Roller Coaster), this Italian mouse...

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...which is called Raton Loco. Haven't been on this style of mouse before. RCDB says it's a 'L&T Systems / Wild Mouse / Wild Mouse 30x20'

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It was a very small park but looked really nice! There's the required Pirate Ship!

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Get excited!!!!

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Our first ride was Montaña Rusa, which I was a little afraid to ride, but if I can get dental work in Tijuana, I can do anything.

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The station is...you know, standard.

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That turn just looks wrong.

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You can see the exit platform on the right. It's totally un-manned. You just kinda stop, the restraints come off, and you leave.

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Time to ride! YOLO!

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A nice shot of their rock wall and Raton Loco (this means Crazy Mouse in Spanish, in case you missed it earlier in the thread)

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The final credit was something I was becoming all to familiar with, a Wacky Worm called Gusano Loco (Crazy Worm).

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I had to drag my friend onto this. He was like 'no way that's for kids.' I was like 'whatever dude, it's a roller coaster. It counts!'

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The go kart track looked fun. Do you see Jesus in the distance?

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Random pic of the go kart station and the pirate ship.

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Cute little bug mushroom ride thing.

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This is the mascot of Mundo Divertido. Hola!!!

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Once again, the park was really 'cute.' Totally small, but cute and fun.

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In Tijuana, you see much more English/Spanish mix than you do down in Mexico City or Guadalajara.

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The park had a whole indoor section as well, with arcade games and some smaller flats. This whole park is mostly for little kids.

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We needed extra tickets to ride the Go Karts, these are the single tickets (as opposed to the sheet I bought earlier).

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Hooray, Go Karting! Can I now say I have technically driven in Mexico?

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They had a stage set up. My totally pro pictures don't show it, but there were a TON of school children here this day. Unlike Knotts though, the kids all waited in line and were totally polite.

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Swing ride with stage area in foreground.

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I don't know how this picture ended up here, but this is the monorail, which leaves the park and cruises around the mall that the park is in.

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Another shot of the indoor area, it had multiple levels.

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There's the mascot again! And some of the kids I was talking about.

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Lots to do inside, except that there wasn't any air conditioning inside and it was kind of miserable.

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I really wanted to ride the monorail, but it was closed. Anyway, off we went, caught another MX$6 ride back to the tourist district.

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This is, by far, the classiest thing I have ever seen in a hotel.

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I believe that was a goat painted like a Zebra? This one may be a pony but I know I saw a couple of goats. Some kind of zebra fetish goin on down there...

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This is the Arco del Reloj (Time Arch), it's pretty big and makes freaky twangy noises from all the cables. I guess the 'reloj' hasn't worked in a while. It's just a black screen.

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Once again, freakin delicious. I don't know what it is, maybe it's the meat, but all Mexican Food tastes better in Mexico.

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Didn't your mother ever tell you to stay away from Tijuana??

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So obviously, we did go out that night, but all you're going to see is this picture of empty shot glasses and a Gatorade lid full of salt. All you can drink for MX$130 (about $10 USD).

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The next morning, we had some delicious sea food, I had Ceviche. Mmmmm. Tortillas were excellent too.

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Cancer de Mama! Collect them all!

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I finished fixing my tooth, and headed back home to that other country to the north.

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Yeah, that one. It's kind of a long walk, through several paseos and across a few bridges. Notice the dentist? There are about 2,000 dentists in Tijuana. I'm glad I had friends who took me to their own dentist, otherwise I probably wouldn't have done this. Still, I saved about $750!!! I'm getting all my dental work done in Mexico until I have dental insurance again.

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The line to get back into the USA was about 1/2 a mile long, took just under an hour to be standing on our 'soil' or whatever.

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One last shot at the line. This bridge above us is the way to get over to the tourist district. Anyway, up next is some more touristing around in Mexico City! I also visited La Feria again, not a ton of pictures but I will share!!! PLEASE COMMENT! Tell me what you think!

Edited by WFChris
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Wow, I wish we had a Mexico next door to NZ where I could get my teeth done! That's awesome!!

 

Good on you for credit whoring Tijuana, Chris. Those Pinfari coasters look a little rickety, but I figure if TPR can get on some of those incredibly dodgy-looking Chinese knock-offs, a Pinfari probably isn't too bad. Looking forward to more.

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How was the overall feel behind the border? While it is deemed safe to go to the capital our government websites still have security warnings for the "US/Mexican border area" at the Mexico entry. Aside from that it is a real hassle to visit Mexico from the US if on a Visa Waifer.

 

That entry portal to Mexico looks like the entry to some kind of prison...

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Great pics! Really loving the TR!

 

I'm from Mexico City and I've never been to Tijuana, but it looks kinda bad, unlike the rest of Mexico! Cancún, Mexico City, Guadalajara, Guanajuato, Querétaro, Puebla and Veracruz are incredibly beautiful!

 

Keep the pics coming!

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The 'overall feel' in Tijuana is kind of wild-west-y to me. Like, something good or bad can happen. The tourist areas have seen better days, but they are still fun. Tijuana is in no was a city that represents the rest of Mexico even though I get the feeling that many Californians judge the whole country by their experiences in Tijuana.

 

It's a huge city and I'd imagine that you would run into trouble if you decided to go exploring outside of the business districts or tourist designated areas.

 

My advice is to study the area, know where you want to go, and to not be an idiot. I did go out and drink, but I also had locals with me, I never drink so much that I can't make decisions for myself, and I always knew how to get to my hotel on foot. If you don't have experience using caution while traveling I would probably hold back on a trip to Tijuana.

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Here are more random adventures in Mexico...

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I went back to Tijuana a few times. I like to get drunk here. I also REALLY like this picture.

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Tijuana is a hot mess.

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My first white pozole, and it was all random animal parts in there, still mega tasty and AWESOME. I think this was like MX$35.

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Tijuana is a hot mess. I don't know why it looks like I have a gold tooth.

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I concur. Anyway, lets get out of Tijuana, NOW! Off to MEXICO CITY AGAIN!!! YAY!!!!

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Helpful hint! Have a map of the local metro system on your smartphone, or print one out! Especially when the metro system looks like this.

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My friend and I made a stop at Museo Frida Kahlo...again for me.

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And we explored Coyoacán a little bit. There are lots of markets, vendors, and food in this neighborhood. It's a lot of fun.

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Panorama of one of the pretty gardens in the central square area of Coyoacán.

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We scored rooms at the Fiesta Inn for $64 a night after taxes. Business class hotel, sky rise, pretty close to everything!

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I honestly saw a lot less of this in Mexico than I was expecting to. In fact this is the only time I saw it!

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Group photo at the best restaurant ever!!! If you like habanero salsa and pozole anyway!!! We spent the week with Omar (next to me), and we met up with these other CFMR members a few times throughout the week.

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Stopped by El Ángel de la Independencia again. Still looking good!

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The next day we decided to take a trip over to the Castillo de Chapultepec. Casatillo means Castle.

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It's in Chapultepec Park, same place as La Feria, and the park is huge and beautiful. You can easily spend a week exploring everything here.

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To get to the Castle, it's a LONG spiraling walk up the hill.

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Like, REALLY long. And they make you throw away your water bottles at the bottom. Lame!

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You slowly emerge above the treeline, and vistas like this pop up.

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La Feria is in this picture. That little stick thing is the drop tower. It's there I promise.

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We finally made it to the top! Who knew this was up here? Looks awesome!

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View down the hill and into the city from the Castle.

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Inside, there is a TON of history and art. We got there with 45 minutes to go before it closed so it was a whirlwind visit.

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Lots of gaudy stuff like this. A lot of the stuff here dates back to Spanish rule of Mexico.

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I really liked the ska tiling.

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Another view from the top. To be honest, I was up here more for the views than the history. I mean, with 45 minutes you can't really pay too much attention.

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Another gaudy historic Spain thing...

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This is the view down Reforma. If you go far enough down that street, you will get to El Angel.

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Fun Fact! The USA flew their flag here at the conclusion of the Mexican American war. I feel pretty lousy about that.

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Probably a killer place to have a party. A ska dance party.

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The big entry plaza at the top of the hill around the Castillo. What does any self respecting coaster enthusiast do when the attraction they're at closes?

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Find the nearest roller coaster! I was HEARTBROKEN when I learned that Infinitum wasn't running. Got to ride Montana Rusa and Cascabel again though!

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And the drop tower that was closed when we visited with TPR!

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It was probably the most tame drop tower I've been on. But I love drop towers and they can't all be perfect.

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This picture is pretty perfect though. Totally a facebook cover photo.

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How did I miss this gem during the TPR tour?! It was really dumb. Just rocked up and down and showed a random volcano exploding video.

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Can you find it? Do you see it? It's pretty 'hidden.' Takes a keen eye....

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I love the happy park mascots!

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Almost as much as I love everything about this candy product. I saw 3 VW beetles driving around the city with afro's on them advertising this.

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That night for dinner we got really, really, extremely wonderful, excellent tasting seafood.

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LoL. We're pretty sure it's a jukebox.

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This Diablo Shrimp was actually diablo. Mission accomplished! BTW I won that totally legit licensed Cars branded thing at La Feria.

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We drank some beers, and listened to this guy sing for a while, but we were pooped. Done for the day. Stick around for a visit to Xochimilco... one of the coolest places I have EVER been!!! POST COMMENTS. Keep this thread relevant!! lol

Edited by WFChris
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omg Chris, you've really done Mexico now, lol!

 

It looks like the TPR Tour was the push you needed

to go back and re-visit. Besides Tijuana.

 

Great TR. And the food, the food.....

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omg Chris, you've really done Mexico now, lol!

 

It looks like the TPR Tour was the push you needed

to go back and re-visit. Besides Tijuana.

 

Great TR. And the food, the food.....

 

TPR definitely got me off my domestic ass. If anybody out there has been stalling on international travel because they have been waiting for friends to go with them or something like that, join a TPR trip! Never left the country before this year, and now I've been to Mexico City 3 times. 2014 is shaping up to be even crazier!!!

 

Thanks again everybody for joining along with me. This really was one of the (if not THE) best years of my life. Unfortunately I don't have much material left but there's still a little more!

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So my last big update (for now) is Xochimilco. Back in the day, Mexico City was built on a lake and many of the streets were actually waterways. Most of this has been paved over of course, but a large chunk of Xochimilco maintains it's waterways to preserve history and naturally presents a tourist attraction. I wanted to visit on the initial TPR trip but after researching, it turns out that it's just not good to go on your own. The best way to experience it is with a group of friends. On this third visit to Mexico City, I brought a friend and we hung out with a group of our friends in Mexico City. Anyway, for a culture stop I have far too many pictures for TPR but whatever, it should be fun. Let's get going!

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That morning we had crepes. Mine was pumpkin flower.

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It's kind of a long drive from central Mexico City, but there is lots to see :)

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Step one is to find the right embarcadero where you are not paying ridiculous tourist fees.

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If you look up Xochimilco on Trip Advisor, you find a bunch of 1 star and 5 star reviews. Very little in between. Picking the right embarcadero plays a big role in this.

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Prices range from $200 - $1500 pesos an hour, depending on what the boat driver thinks he can get out of you and the boat size.

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The 'posted' rate is $350/hr, however many gringos fall for paying $350 per person, or just flat out more for the boat. Some sorry Trip Advisor person paid $1000 for an hour. Sucker!

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The 5 of us got our boat for $250/hr ($19.25USD). We bought it for 2 hours but ended up extending for a total of 4. $1000 divided by 5 people = $200 pesos each ($15.50 USD)

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Omar and I.

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Every boat has a name or two. I hear you can plan ahead and get a specific name painted on your boat, but I couldn't imagine doing all that and actually hunting down your boat. No bueno. Ours was called Anal Aura ;)

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So everybody floats around at about 1 mile per hour, and you just have a good time with whoever you are with. By good time I mean drink.

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This is our driver. He was a quiet man that did not accept our offers to give him alcohol.

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They propel the boats by hitting the canal floor with this stick and pushing the boat.

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You can find anything you would see on the streets on a boat. Here is a boat with miriachis playing for the group.

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Another shot of the miriachis. You can totally dance on your own boat to somebody else's miriachi. That's what we did lol.

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There are birthday parties, wedding groups, groups of friends, families, basically everybody is here to party with their group and have a good time.

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Sometimes, the canals opened up into big open areas, and there were docks everywhere.

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It was fun taking in the sights.

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There is a place called Isla de las Muñecas (Island of the Dolls), but it's really hard to get to, so this person made their own little doll thing closer to the docks.

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There are also vendors on boats. I'm not sure what they were selling. Maybe plants?

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Sometimes, traffic got bad. Every boat in this picture is trying to get somewhere, and eventually you do. It just takes some time.

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This boat was definitely selling plants. We bought some for our friends.

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It rained off and on throughout the day, but it doesn't really matter. We had shade, and lots of beer and tequila.

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Boat Jam's were not uncommon. It was fun because for a brief moment you can share a good time with another group. Sometimes, the other party boats will offer you food. Mostly because everybody on the canal is drunk and in a GREAT mood!

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It always cleared up eventually.

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One of the guys needed a Michelada, so he yelled 'Michelada!' and this lady appeared on her boat, grabbed onto ours, and made micheladas.

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There she goes! It was $50 for a michelada. Everything was quite affordable on the boats (haggling still applied to goods).

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Another scenery shot. This was really a surreal day for us.

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Miriachi, dancing on two boats, our driver; there was always some kind of stimulation to enjoy.

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Hmmm....what's that boat selling?

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Ahhh...corn! Yes please!

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Panorama of one of the more open areas.

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Headed down a slightly less congested canal.

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A memorial of some type.

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Floating along with lots of other groups. Everybody out here was having a good time. It was a Sunday, and weekend vibe was in full force.

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Omar got us little mini Xochimilco boats! They were fragile but mine made it home safely and sits happily on my shelf!

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Stray dogs are just kind of a thing in Mexico City. There aren't many in the central area but pretty much everywhere else, yes.

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Here is a goods vendor, if you wanted a random doll or something. When you are floating along at 1 MPH and drinking, these things become very tempting!

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When we extended again for another couple hours, he headed off into a quieter area of the canals.

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While the mayhem is fun, it was nice to get off into a quieter area and just enjoy our own boat for a little bit.

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If you had to pee, you had to find one of these WC signs, pull over, and pay somebody $5 ($0.40USD) for some toilet paper and access to the toilet. Extra paper was $3 ($0.25USD). Seemed to be standard pricing throughout the area even though these 'WC's' were in no way organized or classy.

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Sometimes you had to walk through random scenes to get to the restroom. This one was definitely interesting. Another 'not in Kansas' moment if you will.

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Surreal, in many ways.

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"That was a weird WC, let's keep going!"

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Scenery in Xochimilco.

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Me and my friend Brian. I think I checked in here on Facebook 3 times just because it was so fascinating and I felt so lucky to be here...and be doing it RIGHT!!! Yes, I'm a little drunk at this point.

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Well, the day wore on, and more and more boats were being parked for the night, so we slowly worked our way back to our dock.

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Yes, I was actually at 'the' Xochimilco, not some weird impostor!

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The time finally came to park the boat. By the time we returned, there was only room for one way traffic. We eventually just kinda stopped in the canal and climbed through other boats to get to the dock.

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There they all lined up! What a cool freakin day.

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We finished off by going to this CRAZY restaurant. They only had like 5 tacos on the menu, and you ordered them, and literally 20 seconds later they would be at your table. As soon as you finished, another guy would appear and be like 'what do you want now? tell me tell me tell me now now now.' We learned to just sit there with a taco or two on the plate if we wanted to take a break. It was the craziest fastest thing I have ever seen. Obviously, it was REALLY GOOD!

 

So I am going to upload a few more random pictures that didn't make their way into the PTR, but for the most part, this is the last big update! I hope it's been enjoyable!!!

Edited by WFChris
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Chris, I'm pretty sure some of your captions aren't with the right photos you've posted.

 

I went through this in one of my current TR postings. I think the trick to getting

everything back in order, is to just Preview it all again. Then hit the Submit button.

 

Stuff happens. Even at TPR, heh.

 

Those boats look neat. Would be nice to have one around here.

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^Yeah, I somehow ended up clicking submit instead up upload photos. It's all fixed now!

 

Feel free to comment about this or ANY other post on this TR. My only hope in posting this is that it has inspired somebody to look at Mexico differently than perhaps they did before. If you have any questions about how to visit any of this stuff I would be more than happy to help with that as well!!!

 

But either way, if you enjoyed it, please COMMENT and let me know!

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Looks like an awesome day. I love your photos of the lady making Michelada (which I had to Google - yum!). I always enjoy the surreal moments and it looks like you had quite a few. Thanks for sharing!

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