Xochimilco, Mexico

Xochimilco lies at 2,274 metres (7.461 feet) above sea level in the valley of Mexico, on Lake Xochimilco. The name Xochimilco is a combination of the Nahuatl words xochitl and milli, which means “where the flowers grow”. It is for this reason why Xochimilco is often referred to as the Garden of Mexico City!

Built on the site of pre-Columbian town, Xochimilco is famous for its chinampas (floating gardens). The local agriculturalists constructed branch and reed rafts on the lake, covered them with mud from the bottom of the lake, and cultivated fruits, vegetables and flowers. These harvests were then shipped to Tenochtitlan (now Mexico City) via canal. In time the rafts took root and became islands.

Xochimilco boat ride or referred to as trajineras (flat-bottomed boats) is a very Mexican thing to do. On the weekends, this place will be packed with families, both locals and tourists-alike. The locals love coming here to escape from the city and gather in big groups to eat, drink, sing and dance! You can also hire a Mariachi Band to play for you! 😁

Xochimilco is still an important market-gardening and flower-producing centre for the city, despite its being surrounded by urban sprawl in the latter part of the 20th century. Around 23 km (14 miles) to the northwest is Downtown Mexico City, which can be reached via an expressway link or by several major avenues. In 1987, Xochimilco was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The growth of Mexico City has had serious detrimental effects on the canals and floating gardens. In 1993, Mexico City initiated a program that improved the treatment of municipal sewage in order to reverse the deterioration of the site.

Xochimilco Market Mexico

This is another private tour with Netouring. This was just half of the tour. The other half was spent in Coyoacán, which will be the topic for the next blog post! Stay tuned!


Have you been to Mexico? I’d love to hear your experiences! Leave your comments below. If you haven’t, I hope this post would encourage you to explore this beautiful country.

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Photography Information:
Camera: Nikon D800 with Tamron 24-70mm F/2.8 (Photos) or iPhone7plus (Video).
Post-processing: Adobe Lightroom Classic CC (Photos) and Final Cut Pro (Video).
Music for the videos are licensed from Soundstripe.

The video above were taken using iPhone7plus. I used DJI Osmo Mobile to stabilize the iPhone especially for long hours of shooting. DJI Osmo Mobile definitely helps to reduce the shakiness of my hands, if I were to do it hand-held. This produces better video quality. I love using it! You should get one too if you like taking videos using your smart phone. Click on the image below to find out more about DJI Osmo Mobile.

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