Travel News

Travel News

By Judy Newell

Mexico Travel News

A Guide to 5 Top Mexico City Markets

Mexico City is a bountiful paradise for all, whether you’re a lover of architecture, culture junkie, art enthusiast, or gourmand. A great place for travelers to sample Mexico City’s intoxicatingly vibrant culture—as well as your personal interests—is found at one of the city’s ever-bustling markets. A meandering visit to at least one of these markets should be a part of any Mexico City itinerary.

La Lagunilla Market

Antique hunters and vintage lovers will find a visit to La Lagunilla Market very fruitful. This massive flea market in the city’s La Lagunilla neighborhood boasts rows of stalls selling collectibles, antiques, and vintage pieces. Much like other flea markets, you’ll find old trinkets and records, vintage toys and suitcases, rare books, exquisite china, and handsome antique furniture.

However, many vendors also sell brand-new merchandise such as knockoff shoes, colorful fabrics, heritage paintings, and calaveras (decorative skulls). While it is infamous for pick pocketing (keep your valuables secure), La Lagunilla Market still draws many tourists.

Mercado Coyoacán

Those who love fun, kitschy mementos and knickknacks might enjoy a stop at this market in artsy Coyoacán. As with many markets in Mexico City, Mercado Coyoacán is a great place to visit for noshing. But it’s even better if you’re shopping for cheap souvenirs to give to friends and family back home.

Usual, abundant finds here include ceramics, multicolored figurines, silver jewelry, and wrestling masks, though fabrics, bags, books, and wooden toys are also available. Be sure to grab a few alebrijes (Mexican folk-art sculptures), and don’t hesitate to haggle. There are some tattoo and piercing spots as well, if you are feeling particularly bold.

Mercado de Artesanias La Ciudadela

Shoppers who love artisanal products will definitely adore a good two-hour visit to Mercado Ciudadela. Home to more than 350 small vendors who sell exquisite and colorful products, this market in the Ciudadela neighborhood is the place to wander if looking for quality Mexican handicrafts at affordable prices.

Nonaggressive vendors here sell everything from typical tchotchkes—such as ceramics, hammocks, sombreros, and jewelry—to more hard-to-find goods, including rugs, leather bags, baskets, curtains, vibrant textiles, and wall hangings. Bargaining here makes a difference, of course, but also keep in mind that vendors nearest the entrances usually charge more.

Mercado de la Merced

As far as markets in Mexico City are concerned, Mercado de la Merced is one of the oldest and largest. Originally a wholesale market, it is also the venue for the most diverse mishmash of products.

East of the city’s historic center, the market features vendors selling a true variety, from street food, herbal remedies, and Mexican sweets to flowers to wedding decorations and even cheap clothes. Sample mole and feast on tacos, cow-stomach stew, and fried insects. When you’ve had your fill, head out to Merced’s open-air market to shop for candied fruit and offbeat souvenirs to take home.

Mercado de San Juan

The best stop for gourmands and adventurous eaters, this thriving market in Mexico City’s historic core is a mouthwatering hodgepodge of food stalls. Over 150 years old, Mercado de San Juan has come a long way from its modest early years. Today, its vendors sell comforting traditional dishes and typical food products as well as more exotic and innovative fares.

Among its fruit, vegetable, spice, and cheese stalls are coffee shops and gourmet eateries that tout exotic meats, such as crocodile, wild boar, stingray, scorpion, beetle, and armadillo. A visit to this popular market will certainly be an unforgettable, out-of-the-box culinary experience.

Cruise News

Southern Rock Cruise in 2018

Themed-cruise specialist StarVista Live has announced a new music voyage for fans of southern rock and roll, boasting a lineup that includes Lynyrd Skynyrd and other iconic acts.

The five-day Southern Rock Cruise will set sail on January 20, 2018, for a journey through the Caribbean with stops in Montego Bay, Jamaica, and the Cayman Islands on Royal Caribbean’s Brilliance of the Seas.

Lynyrd Skynyrd will perform during a shore excursion in Jamaica and other southern rock acts will perform on the ship throughout the voyage. They include some of the greatest bands in rock and roll history such as 38 Special, The Marshall Tucker Band, The Outlaws, Molly Hatchet, Atlanta Rhythm Section and more.

Passengers will be treated to Q&A sessions and panel discussions with band members, guitar lessons from legends in the business, and behind-the-scenes conversations about the recording of their classic albums.

The fun won’t stop there as passengers will also enjoy bourbon tastings, cooking demonstrations, karaoke, and poker tournaments. Add in the sights of the Caribbean and this is the ideal cruise for people who love southern rock and the accompanying lifestyle.

Deal of the Week

Cuba-Ribbean Cruise

Aboard the MSC Opera, from $2,129USD per person, 8 days/7 nights, Saturday departures. 4 days in Cuba, then cruise to Montego Bay, Grand Cayman and Cozumel. All Inclusive. Tour features People to People cultural exchange program in Cuba, full program of daily activities, theatrical shows, casino, swimming pool, gym and open-air sports facilities, all meals onboard, gourmet cuisine and buffet, 24 hour cabin service, unlimited bar & beverage package, round-trip transfers between Havana Airport and the ship, port charges and taxes, all shipboard gratuities, Cuban visas, Cuban Health Insurance.

Words of the Wise and Well-traveled

“Travel is rebellion in its purest form. We follow our heart. We free ourselves of labels. We lose control willingly. We trade a role for reality. We love the unfamiliar. We trust strangers. We own only what we can carry. We search for better questions, not answers. We, sometimes, choose never to come back.” Anonymous

Judy Newell, an international travel consultant for over 40 years, heads Perfect Journeys and specializes in unique travel experiences to destinations around the world. She designs journeys that are tailored to suit a client’s interests, abilities and budget. Please contact Judy for reservations or further information on Travel News topics; cell phone 415 111 8765; Vonage 949 300 3682; email judynewell@perfectjourneys.net. Her office is in Rancho Los Labradores, Car. a Dolores Hidalgo. View the latest travel specials on the website perfectjourneys.net.

Sources: Travel Age West, Travel Pulse, MSC Cruises

 

 

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