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-   -   is it a sin to miss the anthropological museum? (https://www.fodors.com/community/mexico-and-central-america/is-it-a-sin-to-miss-the-anthropological-museum-375705/)

Carolred Nov 11th, 2003 09:47 PM

is it a sin to miss the anthropological museum?
 
Going to MC in late Feb. We are not super-keen on museums or ruins. (e.g., missed Uffizi, Roman Forum, Ephesus, only liked big art in Louvre, British museum worth the entry fee).

We loooooove historical architecture, local flavour (loved iooi Istanbul, Venice, Rome, Florence, San Fransisco, NYC, Paris, Toronto, Munich, Sevilla, London, Havana, Lisbon). Esp. like visiting markets, listening to local music, meeting locals, eating street food, etc. We are staying in Centro Historico and plan to walk alot to get the sense of the area. We are also planning to visit Teotihuacan and Guadalupe in one day. We also intend to see the Bazaar del Sabato and tour the area of San Angel.

People with our similar interests, is it a sin to miss the Anthropological museem and park?

Graziella5b Nov 11th, 2003 11:01 PM

I would say it is a sin to miss it.
The park you can live without it.
Although we walked to the Museum.
The Museum merits indeed more than one visit. But at least one.
The building is a huge modern building with merits in itself .
We focused in Oaxaca because this is the area we visited and in the
Teoticuahacan area. You will love it.
In Mexico go easy on eating street food...Buena suerte.

Jed Nov 12th, 2003 07:06 AM

We enjoyed the museum, but from your post I would say that you would probably not. It explains the history of Mexico with many artifacts. There is not a lot of paintings. We also enjoyed Teotihuacan, but like the Roman Forum, it is an ancient monument of an ancient culture.

I second the hesitation on eating street food. In any case, be sure to get your Hepatitis A immunization. It will help you when you travel the world, including Pittsburgh. You also have to be concerned about bacterial GI problems.

When you return, it would be interesting if you post here what your actual experiences were. ((C))

Graziella5b Nov 12th, 2003 07:46 AM

The National Archeological Museum has gone recently enormous renovations. Each Mexican pre hispanic culture has an area asigned. No pictures at all as far as I know,
Many of the original archeological discoveries are displayed here, for instance the treasure of the famous Tomb 7 from Monte Alban, Oaxaca is in the Museum. Not in Oaxaca. Also there are some huge reproductions of temples and some originals in the gardens, I wouldn't miss it for all the money in the world. To miss it on purpuse it will be a pity indeed.

Howard Nov 12th, 2003 08:00 AM

I would say it is not a sin to miss the museum. If you are not interested, you should not feel guilty..I don't see it as a right or wrong. Also, in addition to the San Angel area, I would suggest a visit to the Coyoacan neighborhood, also in the southern part of MC. great for people watching, local flavor, market , etc. An actually, if you only visited one area from among Coyoacan and San Angel, I would pick the former.

marilynl Nov 12th, 2003 09:28 AM

I have been to Mexico City many times, each time without visiting the anthropological museum. There's just so much else to see that we've never found the time.

What you might like, though, is Maximilian's and Carlotta's palace, which is also in the park, for the historical flavor. Also really enjoyed the Trotsky museum, near the Frida Kahlo museum, and highly recommend both of those. Also good for a nonmuseum-lover with historical architecture and local flavor interests is the Dolores Olmeda museum, in an old hacienda and housing works by Frida and Diego, plus a colony of these incredible Mexican pre-historic looking dogs.

There is plenty to see and love in the Centro Historico, but also try to hit the Mural Museum, near the Alameda, with the famous "Sunday in the Park" mural for a capsule of Mexican art and politics. Guadalupe is well worth the time, too, as is the Bazaar del Sabado.

niskyboss Nov 12th, 2003 10:10 AM

Carol, you sound a lot like my wife and I. We've been to many of the places you mentioned, and enjoyed them all (if you're not bothered by the current state of the world, you would love Morocco).

We were in Mexico City in September, and it immediately became one of my favorite cities. We did not go to the Anthropological Museum -- we only went to the Museum of Modern Arts, and then only briefly. We spent most of our time just roaming around.

We did make it to Coyoacan, and liked it a lot. A real neighborhood -- not too touristy, although the Frida Kahlo Museum is there.

Have a great time!!

Graziella5b Nov 12th, 2003 11:14 AM

Hi , I think I have missed the question. I thought the question was if it was worth it to visit the Archeological Museum for someone that do not care too much for museums, and not what to visit instead. :-)

I loved them all Coyacan, the markets, San Angel, the Dolores Olmeda finca, walking on the streets, talking to people, even sampling a little food in the market etc. and still I enjoyed the Museum a lot. But of course I also liked Uffizi and I also would consider a minor sin to visit Firenze and not the Uffizi, I loved
this old Medici palace full of history and art with its secret connection to the Pitti Palace
.As they say in Mexico, "Sobre gustos no hay nada escrito.", so after reading all the answers I understand that there is no real answer to the question......I guess Carol that it is totally up to you.

niskyboss Nov 12th, 2003 11:21 AM

I think the answer to Carol's question can be found in reading all of these posts. If you read them in total, they say (at least to me), that here's bunch of people who are veteran travelers, who have been to Mexico City, done lots of wonderful things and have had a magical time, all without going to the Museum.

So, although no one answered the question directly, I think the answer to whether it is a sin to miss it, is "NO" -- just go and enjoy what YOU like to do!!!

JoyceL Nov 12th, 2003 11:22 AM

I do not understand the interest in Teotihuacan but lack of interest in the Anthropology Museum. Almost all the objects found at Teotihuacan are now in the Anthropology Museum.

If you have no interest in this part of history, you will not enjoy Teotihuacan. On the other hand, if you do have an interest in this history, you will be fascinated by the Anthropology Museum.

Wednesday Nov 12th, 2003 02:44 PM

The museum is huge, each state has it's own section and after a few hours, we were walking very quickly. My ex-husband who I was with is from there but had never been. We liked the statues and it is a beautiful place however there is alot of history and it is very in depth. If you do not like museums, you may want to see the pyramids and some more hands on neighborhoods, etc. Coyoacan was our favorite place and we spent most of our time there day and night. I also recommend the hepatitis shots because if you get in an accident and need blood or come in contact with other people's you are at risk as well as other reasons like Jed mentioned. Have a great time !!!!!!

SusanInToronto Nov 12th, 2003 06:40 PM

It took us a few trips, but we finally did get to the museum on one trip. It was great, very impressive, but there's so much to see and do in Mexico City that you'll find plenty to do without going there as well. Have a great trip!

Jed Nov 13th, 2003 10:23 AM

Just to clarify - I suggested hepatitis A immunization because Carol wrote that she was going to eat street food. If you are concerned about blood transfusions, you would need hepatitis B immunization.

Also, to answer the question directly - in your case, no, it would not be sin to miss the museum, since I don't think you would enjoy it. ((F))

Wednesday Nov 13th, 2003 01:17 PM

I agree Jed and I should of clarified that, I had A and B shots. Even our native relatives warned us against eating street food, but we did it anyway. Enjoy !

Carolred Nov 13th, 2003 02:15 PM

JoyceL: Teotihuacan is architecture. A room full of stuff taken from it is not. I have never been fond of anthropology museum sections. I don't see the draw in a lot of pots and masks and stuff that rightfully should still be at the site not stolen. I like science museums. Each to his own.

I have my Hep A and B, got them 3 years ago before I went to Turkey. I know about street food, though numerous cheap independent travel trips. Nothing beats street food! Never travel without lots of immodium and acid controller. And I will take the usual precautions (hot food, freshly prepared with visible cleanliness, no salads, fruit with peels). In reality you can get sick from food here too (try hot dog stands!), so I don't see all the fuss.

Thanks, folks, I had thought about Coyoacan but thought that since we were going to the Sat. market in San Angel, we would wander the streets there. Is it reasonable walking distance between the two? Also, is it reasonably safe to take the metro to near san Angel and walk to the market?

Wednesday Nov 13th, 2003 03:18 PM

Carolred, we did...and you could always jump in a cab too. I liked Coyoacan especially for Frida Kahlo's house, it was $2 to get in and is it's own art/history/political "museum" in itself but obviously on a smaller scale. There are also a couple beautiful churches in the square, one of we were going to renew vows in at one point. And on the weekends, LOTS of street food !! Yum. I'm sorry, I was being driven most of the time and do not recall if those neighborhoods are in close proximity. I hope you have a wonderful time.

Carolred Nov 14th, 2003 08:44 PM

Are drivers cheap?

I hate to say but my husband hated the movie Frida so I would probably have to do Frida pilgrimages on my own. Not that that so bad, I have gone on my onwn on many so-called unsafe big European cities and totally enjoyed myself. No man to judge me!

Jed Nov 15th, 2003 07:18 AM

I had posted this in my trip report in May:

"Taxis come in 3 types. When the doorman whistles for you, you get a regular car, which is most expensive. These are 10 -20 US to most places in MC. At the "Sitio" stations on the streets, you get smaller cars painted green and white, which are cheaper. Hiring a car and driver from the hotel costs 25 US/hr, if you want someone to be with you for a few hrs. You pay more for safety and comfort. They don't turn on the AC unless you ask them." Just don't take a taxi on the street except for the Sitio.

If you liked the Frida movie, then you should go to her house, which is interesting. Taking a taxi to and from Frida hose would be taxing to your purse, but soothing for your psyche. ;;)

Graziella5b Nov 15th, 2003 07:53 AM

Hi speaking of Coyoacan now, a few days back, grant you it was a Sunday when traffic is lighter, from our hotel we walked to the Archeolotgical Museum, had a short visit as we always do with museums trying to focus in what we like to see. Loved it. And then called a radio taxi, Servitaxis that is the name of the sitio, from the public phone in front of the museum.
It took us to the Troski in Coayacan from there we walked to the Frida and were right in time at 1 PM + to enjoy the wonderful market and action in the plaza.
Had a great day at Coayacan, lunch, then coffee in a small coffee house a block off the main plaza. When ready to return we walked to a visible corner away from the crowds , there was an Heladeria right in the corner, called for another Servitaxi, while eating a delicious cone in one of the side tables. Sure enough a few minutes later he picked us up and again 80 pesos on the dot.That is less than 7 dollars for a long ride.


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