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Travel Guide to Mexico City

things to do in mexico city

Mexico City is one of the largest cities in the world and an amazing place to visit. With it’s rich history spanning back to the days of ancient empires, it’s a complete melting pot of culture, great food, and beautiful architecture.

Unfortunately, it also has a reputation for being an unsafe place to visit. While some of those safety concerns are based in fact, as a seasoned traveler, you can definitely spend time in this amazing city and still keep your wallet by following a few safety procedures. So if you think Mexico City is on your bucketlist, here is our list of things to see during your visit.

The Top of Torre Latinoamercana

A source of great pride for the people of Mexico City is skyscraper Torre Latinoamericana. While it’s not the most appealing of buildings, it is in-fact the tallest building to ever be built on seismic land.  It’s an impressive building, and yields some amazing views.  It’s stood it’s ground during three huge earthquakes, making this skyscraper not only one of the safest buildings in the area, but also an architectural marvel in the heart of Mexico City.  If you are looking for the best view of the city, just 110 pesos will take you to the 37th floor where you can gaze at the entire city life bustling below.

Palacio des Belles Artes

While Torre Latinoamericana might not be the beautiful building to gaze upon,  Palacio de Belles Artes surely is. The magnificent architecture mixed with art deco,  neoclassical styles, and unique murals make this a must-stop destination for any tourist visiting Mexico City.

Parque Almendra

If you need some fresh air after visiting Palacio de Belles Artes, stop by parque almendra for a taste of some of the best street food in the city. The park is also home to street vendors selling an assortment of fun gifts and unique trinkets. If you play your cards right, you’ll catch a mariachi band passing through. It’s a great spot to rest and casually explore the central part of the city.

Parque Chapultepec

If arque almendra isn’t for you, try Parque Chapultepec. It’s a great place to get some fresh air and take a leisurely walks through a gorgeous part of the city.   It’s the biggest park in Mexico City and also home to Castle Chapultapec located in the middle of the park.

The Neighborhoods

The variety of neighborhoods is as unique as the people who live in this vast city.  Knowing your way around the neighborhoods will give you a sense of safety, because like any big city, not all neighborhoods are safe.  If you are unsure, try to stay out-and-about during daylight hours to avoid any potential problems. Here’s our suggestion for fun neighborhoods to visit during your vacation:

• Condesa –  Great for young people, this is one of Mexico City’s most fun neighborhood for travelers.  Great restaurants an lively bars make this a fun but also safe place to visit either during the day, or in the evenings.

• Roma – Close to the city center and the ‘Zona Roma’ area, this neighborhood is home to a variety of cute restaurants and hip bars.

• Polanco – If you are well-off or famous in Mexico City, you probably are a resident of the Polanco neighborhood. So if you’re concerned about safety, this is a great place to hang out, as it’s relatively crime free.

When visiting any neighborhood, day or night, it’s always a good idea to keep your whits about you. Don’t flaunt cash, be careful with your belongings, and use common sense when walking around an area you are unfamiliar with.

Not sure where to stay? Here’s a list of safe accommodations within Mexico City that all have 4-5 star reviews.

What to Do in Mexico City

Frida Kahlo’s House

Even if you know very little about Mexican history, you know about Frida Kahlo. This talented artist is the icon of all things feminist.  She has inspired countless women to be forward-thinking and embrace their own individuality.  A visit to her actual home is a must-see in your visit to Mexico City. You’ll learn about her struggles with polio, her lifestyle and actually get to see original pieces of her artwork.

Leon Trotsky’s House

Not far from Frida’s Casa Azul, is the Leon Trotsky house.  Not much of the communist propaganda is written in english, but you’ll be able to actually walk through the house where he was exiled.

Anthropology Museum

You can’t throw a stone in Mexico City and not hit a museum. This ancient city has so much history, it’s a landmark destination for history buffs.  The Anthropology Museum gives visitors a lesson in Mexican culture and customs. It’s a big museum though, so you might want to not plan much else during the day of your visit.

Xochimilco

If you are looking to get out a little, consider a boat trip to the neighborhood of Xochimilco on a lanchas. You’ll get a deeper understanding into the native culture as well as a cruise around Mexico’s ‘Little Venice’ all while getting some sunshine and relaxing with a cocktail in hand.

Teotihuacan

You really don’t want to come all the way to Mexico City and see the Aztec pyramids of Teotihuacan. These ancient architectural marvels tell the story of the Maya, Mixtec and Zapotec people. Once the largest city in Mesoamerica, you’ll be able to hike up the the pyramids of Teotihaucan and capture the visuals of how these ancient people worshipped their gods.

Street Food – Tacos Al Pastor

A visit to Mexico City would not be complete without a meal or two from a street vendor. Here you’ll be taste both the delicate and bold flavors of  the city all while saving some money, and keeping inline with your busy site-seeing day.  If you don’t know what to order, a local favorite is the Tacos al Pastor. These delightful tacos mix the savory nature of shredded pork with the sweet and tangy flavor of pineapple.  Yum, so delicious!

Where to Next?

For many people, a trip to Mexico City also includes another destination along their journey through this amazing country.   As you hop around this exiting city, it’s important to have a retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the city. As well as a place that’s safe, and a trusted hospitality brand.  We’ve curated a list of the trusted hotels in Mexico City that only have reviews of 4 and 5 stars, but are at a variety of price points.  Click here to view our hotel and resort recommendations in Mexico City. If you are unsure, please use a Travel Agent. A travel specialist can insure your safe to Mexico City is both enjoyable and safe.

To book either group tours or private excursions, we highly recommend working with either Intrepid Travel or G Adventures. Both can provide family experiences, unique tours, or couple adventures. And to guarantee your next trip is secure, our parter Tourradar offers free travel insurance quotes for travelers