For those in the know, the other San Juan Market may be much more like what they were looking for. It’s on the very southern edge of Centro, at the corner of Arcos de Belén and Eje Central at Metro Salto del Agua.
A mainstay for lunch in the area, there are three or four major fondas in the southwest corner. They largely dominate the lunch business with a few other smaller locales keeping the entire place busy. Then you still have the resplendent chaos of the produce stands, the fish-mongers, and the butchers. Together, it’s a magnificent harmony of color, sound, and smell.
The fact is, international visitors have been wandering in and out for decades. In the past, they were usually looking for the San Juan Market – Pugibet. But, truth be told, today the Arcos market has become a destination entirely all its own.
A big part of the reason is for those three or four fondas mentioned above. And for just this reason, these same fondas have increasingly employed waiters with at least some English skills. Fruits and vegetables are less polished and photo-ready here, but as a classic neighborhood center, it’s a wonderful place to visit and enjoy at least a good part of your afternoon.
Afterwards, a stroll back up the Calle López to the Palacio de Bellas Artes may be in order. It’s a fascinating look into the Real Mexico City and all the many parts of it that remain unchanged, even after so many years of changes and progress. The rest of San Juan Moyotlan can be visited here.