Car Rental in Mexico City and Plaza de las Tres Culturas

If there is one thing that car rental in Mexico City travelers are quick to recognize during a trip to this southern country, it is the pride of Mexican citizens. Intelligent and industrious, Mexicans are well versed in their country's history, culture and economy. This is made most apparent by the numerous monuments built throughout every neighbourhood of the city. One such prominent monument is that of the Plaza de las Tres Culturas, or the Plaza of the Three Cultures. Located at Lazaro Cardeuas Y Manuel Gonzales Streets, the Plaza of the Three Cultures is a symbol of Mexico's unique peoples and, more importantly, the nation's cultural heritage.

Three cultures, one country
The "Three Cultures" recognized by the Plaza de las Tres Culturas are pre-Columbian, Spanish Colonial and the independent "mestizo" nation. As many car rental Mexico City travelers might known, Mexico was originally the most powerful Native American (Aztec) empires in the world. It then became a flourishing Spanish colony during the 16th century, before winning its independence. Today, most Mexican citizens are mestizos, or persons of mixed European and Native American ancestry. Thus the area is named to represent this mixture of cultures.

A crossroads of culture
Car rental Mexico City travelers will find the Plaza of the Three Cultures in what was once an ancient Aztec City, and is today the city of Tlatelolco. At the site of the plaza, travelers will see three very important buildings. Though they appear to be entirely unrelated, these buildings are actually representative of the three cultures recognized by the plaza. From the center of the square, car rental Mexico City travelers can see the ruins of ancient Tlatelolco, the Colonial Cathedral of Santiago, and finally, the Secretaria de Relaciones Exteriores (the Department of Foreign Affairs building). Of course, these three buildings are representative of the pre-Columbian past, Spanish rule and present independence.

Three buildings, and three tragic events
Sadly, the Plaza of Three Cultures is also symbolic of three tragic events in Mexican history. Firstly, the city of Tlatelolco was the site of the Aztec's final stand against the Spanish army in 1521. The Spanish, who were led by Hernan Cortes, were believed to have killed some 40,000 Aztecs during this bloody struggle. Car rental Mexico City travelers will find a plaque memorializing the battle at the plaza. The plaque reads "Neither a victory or a defeat, but the painful moment of birth of the Mexico of today, of a race of Mestizos." The second tragedy occurred in 1968 when Mexican soldiers, stormed an unarmed student protest in the plaza. The students were staging a protest against spending for the 1968 summer Olympics to be held in Mexico City. More than 14,000 students were killed that day. Car rental Mexico City travelers will find a large monument listing the names and ages of most of the students lost that day. Finally, the third tragedy took place on September 19, 1985. On this day, an early morning earthquake struck Mexico City, toppling one of the modern housing complexes located adjacent to the plaza. More than 8,000 people were killed by the quake.

A plaza for remembering
The Plaza of the Three Cultures is an important landmark in Mexico City. Not only does it pay homage to the past, but it also recognizes the many lives that have been lost on the nation's journey to the present. A sombre sight, the Plaza de las Tres Culturas is a great reminder of Mexico's amazing cultural depth and history. Car rental Mexico City travelers will have plenty of great photo opportunities between the ruins of the past, and the buildings of the future.

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