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Mexico City is well known as the heartbeat of Mexico. With nearly 9 million residents and a vibrant culture, you can easily get swept up in the energy of the city!
I’ve visited Mexico City a handful of times and truly never get bored. As one of the oldest cities in North America, it’s bursting with history and culture. It’s full of brightly colored neighborhoods, the best food in the country, incredible tours, and lively events.
With so many things to do in Mexico City, it can be overwhelming! This is exactly why we put together this 3-day itinerary to show you the best places in town. You’ll experience the beautiful historic center, classic artists and museums, ancient ruins, and, of course, delicious tacos and tequila. So buckle up because you’re about to experience an amazing 3 days in Mexico City!
- Day 1: Morning and Afternoon – Explore the Historical Center on Foot
- Where to Eat in Mexico City Historical Center
- Day 2: Morning – Visit Frida Kahlo Museum and Coyoacan
- Where to Eat in Coyoacan
- Day 2: Midday – Explore La Condesa and Roma
- Where to Eat in La Condesa and Roma
- Day 2: Afternoon – Museo Nacional de Antropología
- Day 2: Night – Lucha Libre
- Day 3: Morning and Day – Teotihuacán Tour
- Day 3: Afternoon/Night – Mexican Cooking Class and Cocktails in Mexico City
- Other Activities to do While in Mexico City
- Where to Stay in Mexico City
- Thanks for reading!
- Why We Book Tours with Viator
- Renting a Car in Mexico
- Don't get Caught without Travel Insurance!
Day 1: Morning and Afternoon – Explore the Historical Center on Foot
The best way to get to know Mexico City is to dive right into the historic center. Here, you can learn all about the culture and how this place grew into a beautiful metropolis. The best part about Mexico City’s historical center, you can walk to almost every attraction on the list!
The historic center is home to Mexico’s oldest (and arguably prettiest) buildings, as well as some ancient ruins! The central point is the Zocalo, a massive plaza encompassing several city blocks. The Zocalo is not only colorful and vibrant, but it’s surrounded by iconic buildings such as the Palacio de Bellas Artes and the Metropolitan Cathedral.
They call this historic center the “beating heart of Mexico City,” and as you walk around, you can just feel the culture pumping through its veins. You’ll find locally owned shops and art, the best street food you’ve ever tasted, and live mariachi bands. There are also beautiful old buildings, museums, and high-end dining options.
What I love about the historic center is that it’s so centrally located – all these attractions are within walking distance of each other. My suggestion is to pin these locations on Google Maps so you can go from one to another. There are a lot of attractions to see – so planning ahead will help you maximize your time and enjoy all that the historic center has to offer!
The Zocalo is a perfect spot to begin your day. This is the main square in Mexico City, and it’s HUGE – it’s actually the largest plaza in any Latin American city! The plaza is bustling with vendors selling all sorts of items, from locally-made art and traditional clothing to handmade food. It’s also the political center of the country.
The Zocalo (aka the “Plaza de la Constitución”) can be recognized by the giant Mexican flag in the center of the square. This is a must-see for your first time here!
This plaza is a popular meeting point, and it has been since the Aztecs inhabited the area. It has been built up over the centuries, giving this spot layers of history. Today, it’s surrounded by the beautiful National Palace, Metropolitan Cathedral, and the Supreme Court building. Architectural buffs will be in their element!
Starting at the Zocalo is the best option because it’s right in the middle of the historic center. You can enjoy the Zocalo any time of the day, and it’s easy to explore on your own. And if you prefer taking a Mexico City tour, many will start here with an introduction to the plaza.
Related Read: The Zocalo is the central meeting point in many Mexican cities, including Oaxaca. And if you’re also visiting this Mexican city, you can learn about the best places to stay in Oaxaca here!
The Metropolitan Cathedral sits right on the north side of the Zocalo. You can’t miss it since it’s the stunningly beautiful building that towers over the square.
The cathedral was constructed over a span of 250 years. It required a number of prominent architects, painters, sculptors, and artists to get it finished.
As styles changed over the years, so did the construction of the church. It’s fascinating to see the conglomeration of architectural styles and design. It creates a timestamp for each generation, social class, and area of influence that went into building the Metropolitan Cathedral.
You can go inside the cathedral and see the intricate details for yourself from 9 am – 5:30 pm every day. It’s free to enter, and there are information plaques along the walls to help you understand what you’re seeing. However, this is still a functional church, so make sure to be respectful of mass service times.
Your next stop in Mexico City’s historic center is Templo Mayor, which provides an incredible window into the neighborhood’s history. It’s located just a 5-minute walk from the Metropolitan Cathedral and a 2-minute walk from the Zocalo.
Templo Mayor is now a museum but was previously the main temple of the city in Aztec times. When the Aztecs ruled this area, it was known as Tenochtitlan. The temple was originally built in 1325 but was rebuilt six times!
Unfortunately, the temple was destroyed by the Spanish in 1521. They constructed the Metropolitan Cathedral to take its place. During this time, the temple was picked apart, and its materials were used to build other parts of the growing city.
However, excavations brought this temple back to life in the 19th and 20th centuries. They found more than 7,000 artifacts, including sculptures, pottery, skeletons, weapons, and gold. These artifacts showed the value and significance that this lost temple held for the Aztec people – and now, you can see them for yourself!
I loved exploring the Templo Mayor Museum and learning the details of its fascinating history. It took us about 2 hours to wander through the whole place. Most of the information is in English, so even if you don’t speak Spanish, you won’t miss out!
You can visit the Templo Mayor Museum Tuesday to Sunday from 9 am to 5 pm. It costs $90 MXN (about $5 USD) to enter and is free for children under 13! It’s also free for everyone on Sundays.
This is definitely a fun way to learn about the deep roots of this Mexico City neighborhood. It’s the perfect introduction to the city, which is why we included it on day 1 of this itinerary!
The National Palace is another massive structure that will certainly catch your eye. It spans 200 meters (660 feet) long and takes up the entire length of the square. But in case you still don’t see it, it’s just to the east of the Zocalo!
The National Palace is the main government building and the official residence of the Mexican president. However, its roots date all the way back to the 16th century. Some of the infrastructure from when the Aztecs ruled is still part of this building. Trust me, it’s crazy old and very intriguing to see!
This building has changed hands many times over the years. However, it has always held some sort of political significance.
You can visit the National Palace and even go inside to check out the architecture up close. It’s open from 9 am to 5 pm Tuesday through Sunday. Entry is free, but make sure to bring a government-issued ID or passport (passport copies aren’t accepted).
I also love visiting the Zocalo at night simply to see the National Palace all lit up! There are so many lights shining on this large building, making it even more beautiful.
Related Read: Mexico City isn’t the only city full of history and culture! Check out the best things to do in Guadalajara.
Museum of the City of Mexico
The Museum of the City of Mexico is truly more than your average museum. Its location is just a 5-minute walk from the National Palace. And like most buildings in this area, the architecture is striking and has been around for hundreds of years. However, this museum definitely has a royal flair.
The museum building was formerly a palace, so the structure is huge. It has 26 rooms, all with intricate designs fit for royalty. The palace was home to the family known as the Count of Santiago Calimaya and dates back to 1527! Generations of the family lived in this palace until the late 20th century, making this the only home inhabited by Spanish nobility at its time.
In 1964, the residences were turned over to the city, and it was deemed a historic site. Mexico City spent a few years renovating the 26 rooms into exhibition halls that cover the history of the Aztecs to the present. Here you’ll find tons of artifacts from these time periods, famous art pieces, and an extensive library of historical books and documents.
Even if you aren’t a big museum person, this one is seriously worth a stop! There is so much to see here, and the building itself is impressive. When we visited, most of the history exhibits were on the first floor. But my favorite portion was the upstairs, which was filled with art.
It’s open from 10 am to 6 pm Tuesday through Sunday and costs $32 MXN (about $2 USD) to enter. I think this is a great deal considering all you get to see!
Mirador Torre Latino
Now that you’ve spent some time exploring Mexico City on foot, it’s time to get a bird’s eye view of this expansive city. The Mirador Torre Latino is a 44-story tower with an observation deck at the very top. This building is a 17-minute walk from the Museum of the City of Mexico. Once you arrive, take the elevator all the way up for a chance to see the entire city below!
The Mirador Torre Latino is one of Mexico City’s most important landmarks due to its size, location, and history. It was constructed in 1956, and while there were skyscrapers at the time, this easily became the tallest.
The engineering of this building was ahead of its time and is recognized as an international landmark. This was the first skyscraper to be successfully built in a highly seismic zone. In fact, it withstood an 8.1 magnitude earthquake in 1985 when many other smaller buildings in the area collapsed.
While the Mirador Torre Latino is no longer the tallest building in Mexico City, it has become an icon of the city. It is totally worth a visit and is quite different from the other places you’ll visit throughout the day.
The observation deck gives a breathtaking 360-degree view of the city. In large cities, I sometimes feel a bit claustrophobic. But being up so high felt unusually freeing, giving me a little reprieve from the hustle and bustle down below.
You can visit any day of the week from 9 am to 10 pm. I especially loved visiting at night because you get such a different view. Believe me, it’s stunning to see the whole city lit up! Tickets are $180 MXN ($10.50 USD) for adults and $140 MXN ($8 USD) for children.
Never in my life have I seen a post office worthy of being called a palace – that is until I visited the Palacio Postal! This incredible building is in the historic center of Mexico City, just two blocks from the Mirador Torre Latino.
The Palacio Postal was constructed in 1907, but its design was far ahead of its time. The Italian architect Adamo Boari designed this building as well as the Palacio de Bellas Artes (which you’ll stop at next). He used inspiration from Art Nouveau, gothic, and Spanish Renaissance. All this to say, it’s insanely beautiful for a post office.
The need for this large building came because the post office was handling 130 million pieces of mail each day! The building was reconstructed in the 1950s, which actually weakened the integrity of the structure. So unfortunately, when the earthquake hit in 1985, the building suffered major damage.
While you visit this stunning site, you’ll see the post office at work! Yep, this is still a functioning postal service. It is completely free to visit and a quirky piece of history in the city.
Palacio de Bellas Artes
A two-minute walk will take you from the historic post office to the Palacio de Bellas Artes. This is the palace of fine arts, where you can find music, dance, theater, opera, and literature. There are also rotating exhibitions in painting, sculptures, and photography. It is well known as “the art cathedral of Mexico”.
Designs for this building began in 1904 by the same Italian architect who designed the Palacio Postal. However, due to issues with the soft soil and political problems during the Mexican Revolution, construction was halted from 1913 until 1932. By then, a Mexican architect took over and completed the project by 1934 and dedicated it to the first art museum in Mexico.
This is a super fun place to visit and has different performances all the time, so you’re sure to see something unique. I highly recommend checking out the list of events so you can catch a show. You can ask for the upcoming schedule at the box office or look on their website (however, the site is only in Spanish).
If you prefer, you can simply explore the museum to enjoy its beauty. The Palacio de Bellas Artes is open from 11 am to 5 pm Tuesday to Sunday. It is $80 MXN (about $5 USD) to enter, which is a steal for how beautiful this place is!
Casa de los Azulejos
Casa de los Azulejos (the House of Tiles) is yet another historic palace turned into a cultural icon. It’s also a restaurant, making this a great mid-day stop. So come here to refuel on your day of exploration! And luckily, it’s only a 3-minute walk from the Palacio de Bellas Artes.
Casa de los Azulejos is well known for its blue and white tile-covered exterior – just check out my photo above! Believe me, this is not just a house, this is a work of art.
Its roots date back to the late 1700s when this was a highly desirable street to live on. The house is actually made of two houses that were conjoined when both owners got married. Years later, a descendant of the married couple decided to restore the deteriorating house with tiles … tons and tons of tiles. Hence its name!
There have been several renovations since this era. But don’t worry, the beautiful tiles remain, and they even added a stained glass roof.
The building changed hands numerous times throughout history. Today, it houses one of Mexico City’s most famous restaurants, Sanborns. They serve traditional Mexican fare, such as mole, pozole, and tacos.
The restaurant is open at 7 am every day of the week! It closes at 12 am Sunday to Thursday and at 1 am on Friday and Saturday. I highly suggest stopping in for a meal or cocktail, but you can also come to simply gawk at this incredible building!
The oldest park in all of the Americas sits in the heart of the historic center!
Alameda Central Park was created in 1592 and was once an Aztec marketplace. It’s a refreshing green space within the bustling city and is only a 3-minute walk from the Casa de los Azulejos. This park is the perfect place to walk after a meal and enjoy some fresh air.
Like most places in the historic center, Alameda Central has had a tumultuous history. It was once an Aztec marketplace. Later, it became a central area during the Inquisition – the park was actually called “the burning place” as they would burn witches and convicted people at the stake. Luckily, with Mexican Independence in the mid-1800s, this park became a center for celebrations.
Today, you’ll see five classical fountains, statues, and lots of beautiful vegetation. I was also surprised to learn that vendors are not allowed in the park. This creates a very peaceful environment and a nice change of pace from the rest of the city.
The park is open 24/7 and is free to enjoy! Of course, I recommend visiting on a sunny day when you can see all the pretty structures and greenery.
Museo Mural Diego Rivera
On the other side of Alameda Central is the famous Museo Mural Diego Rivera. Diego Rivera is a world-renowned painter who called Mexico City home. The museum is famous for housing the 15.6-meter (51-foot) wide painting, Sueño de una Tarde Dominical en la Alameda Central (Dream of a Sunday afternoon in Alameda Central Park).
The museum was built in 1986 simply to hold the famous painting. The painting had been on display in the Hotel del Prado until the earthquake of 1985. The hotel was damaged, as was the painting.
After being restored, the mural had to be transported to the museum. This was no easy task, and they actually had to cut the wall it was hung on. They used a metal beam to support the giant painting, and then the museum was built around this wall!
The museum is dedicated to Diego Rivera but holds other famous artists’ work as well as rotating exhibits. It’s open Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm and costs $45 MXN (about $2.62 USD) to enter.
Your final destination on this historical center walking tour is Plaza Garibaldi. This plaza is a popular location to see mariachi bands perform (and battle!), eat street food from vendors, and enjoy brightly colored buildings!
Plaza Garibaldi is about a 15-minute walk from the Diego Rivera Mural Museum. It should be noted that the plaza is safe to visit at night, but the area surrounding it is not safe after dark. So if you’re visiting later in the day, I highly recommend taking an Uber there and back.
However, this plaza is a great way to end your day! We came here to enjoy some beers and music after a long day of sightseeing. And although I knew we’d hear mariachi music, I didn’t realize just how much!
It is often called the “mariachi mecca” as you’ll always find a few mariachi bands playing here. The plaza grew in popularity for mariachi music in the 1920s with the rise of cinema and films displaying this music style. The best time to visit the plaza is Friday and Saturday nights, as there are tons of people around watching all the bands perform.
Overall, this is a great taste of Mexico’s history and culture. And it’s right in the historic center of the city!
Mexico City Historical Center Tours
Exploring the historical center on your own makes for a great day! However, you can learn even more on a guided tour. You won’t have to worry about logistics or navigating the map. Plus, you can get a lay of the land on your first day, which can help you feel safer in Mexico City.
So if you prefer having a guide take you all around the city, check out these historical center tours!
Historic Downtown Walking Tour
This 3.5-hour walking tour is an excellent way to experience the city! You’ll hit the iconic stops in the historic district, but the real selling point is the amazing guides. These guides have a deep knowledge of the area, including the historical and architectural aspects. We learned so much insider info that we would have missed on our own!
They’ll take you to the Cathedral Metropolitan, Templo Mayor, Casa de los Azulejos, Palacio Postal, and Palacio de Bellas Artes (5 places on our list!). This tour will also take you to Francisco I. Madero Avenue (another fascinating area with hidden markets and food vendors).
There is a maximum of 9 people per tour, which I loved. We got to mingle with the other tourists and ask our guide many questions.
The cost ranges from $15-$26 USD depending on your group size and includes your friendly guide and any entry fees. Overall, we felt it was a fantastic way to experience Mexico City!
To secure your preferred date and time, I’d highly recommend booking this tour in advance!
Private Tour in Mexico City Downtown
We love a private tour, especially one that can be customized to suit your needs! This 8-hour tour will give you the flexibility to decide what sites you want to see. And if you really like a certain place, you have the freedom to stay as long as you desire. Since this is a completely private tour, you can bond with your group and get one-on-one time with your guide.
This full-day tour takes you around the city in an air-conditioned vehicle, so it’s great for those who don’t want to walk all day! It also picks you up from your hotel – so no need to worry about transportation! You’ll pass by some of the best places in the city, including El Angel de la Independencia, Palacio de Bellas Artes, and Alameda Central Park.
You’ll also have time to get out and explore other locations, such as the Anthropology Museum and Chapultepec Castle (which is unique to this tour!). This hilltop castle is beautifully landscaped and offers great views and houses the National Museum of History. You’ll also see Diego Rivera’s famous mural and the Metropolitan Cathedral. Of course, it’s a private tour, so feel free to request other stops at the time of booking!
Overall, this private tour is a wonderful combination of art, history, and culture. I always find having our own driver makes things so convenient and comfortable. And hey, that’s what vacation is all about, right?!
This tour lasts 8-9 hours and is offered Tuesday through Sunday. It costs between $74-$230 USD per person depending on group size (max 12). The price covers entry fees, transportation, and your guides. Food and tips are on you, though.
For that personalized, stress-free experience, check availability and book this tour online here!
City Tour Mexico City + Fine Arts Museum
If this is your first time traveling to Mexico City, this walking tour is made for you! It offers a great insight into Mexico’s history and culture by taking you to the most important places. It also takes you to extra locations that aren’t mentioned on our list, so you get a really well-rounded perspective of the city.
On this 3-hour tour, your local guide will meet you in the historic center. As you walk, you’ll observe some gorgeous architecture, including the Palacio Postal and Casa de los Azulejos (House of Tiles). At the Palacio de Bellas Artes, you’ll head inside to see murals and artwork of 20th-century artists like Diego Rivera.
One thing I like about this tour is that it stops at the Palacio de Mineria (Palace of Mining). It’s where mining engineers received their training back in the 1800s. A neoclassical masterpiece, the palace was designed by Tolsá and built between 1797 and 1813. Today it houses a branch of the national university’s engineering department. Visits are by 50-minute guided tour only, but if you go inside you can see actual meteorites that landed in Mexico 50,000 years ago.
If you’re a daredevil foodie, you might also enjoy the Mercado de San Juan. This exotic food market has everything from imported cheese to chocolate-dipped scorpions. So bring your appetite and sense of adventure … or just watch others try these crazy snacks. Although fascinating, I’m not sure I would be able to stomach some of these items!
These tours are available Tuesdays through Saturdays. They start at 10 am, 11 am, or 12 pm from the Plaza de la Republica or the Palacio de Bellas Artes. You’ll end at the Zocalo roughly 3 hours later.
The tour costs between $30-$42 USD depending on your group size (max 7 adults). It covers your guide. However, you’re responsible for the entrance ticket to Palacio de Bella Artes, which costs $90 MXN ($5.25 USD).
For a fun intro to the city, reserve this walking tour online here!
Historic Center Food Tour
If you’re a foodie, why not experience the historic center through its food?! Mexico City is well known for its cuisine – it’s some of the best in the world. Taking a food tour in Mexico City not only lets you try yummy dishes, but it also ties the history and culture together through the food you’re eating!
This 5-hour food tour is led by a local guide and will take you through the historic center. Just like the previous tours we mentioned, you’ll pass by incredible buildings. But the highlight of this tour is stopping at historic eateries, including street vendors, classic cantinas, and an Aztec market.
When we went, we had an amazingly fresh ceviche tostada. I also really liked the plantain empanadas. There are plenty of different snacks, so you’re bound to find something you love!
However, the main attraction of this tour is Mercado San Juan (San Juan Market), a gourmet and exotic food market. Here, you’ll have the chance to try many different traditional (and not-so-traditional) dishes. I won’t give away too many surprises, but let’s just say this isn’t your average food market!
Tours are offered on weekends at 11:30 am. They begin at the Oaxaca de Mexico restaurant – where you’ll dive right into some snacks! You’ll end the 5-hour tour with dessert at the Dulcería de Celaya. Make sure to come hungry and wear comfy walking shoes (and be prepared to loosen that belt a notch or two!).
All food and drinks (including some alcoholic ones) are included in the price of $105 USD. It is open to all ages, but keep in mind that the minimum drinking age is 18.
If you want to experience the historic center through its cuisine, this tour is for you! But I recommend booking this food tour before it fills up!
Related Read: If you’re also visiting the Yucatan, read about our favorite tours in the Yucatan Peninsula!
Where to Eat in Mexico City Historical Center
Tacos El Huequito – First Al Pastor Taco restaurant in Mexico City
Since we are on a history kick here, it’s a no-brainer to include the first Al Pastor Taco restaurant in Mexico City! Tacos El Huequito was once a little hole-in-the-wall restaurant but has grown into a household name. They have been around since 1959 and are not only great for tacos but all sorts of traditional Mexican dishes!
This place is famous for its al pastor. These are pork tacos where a huge skewer of meat is cooked over an open flame for hours. You MUST try a dish that includes this. I went with the classic tacos, which were seasoned to absolute perfection!
The atmosphere is lively and fun, and the prices are definitely reasonable, making this a great spot for lunch or dinner. It’s open daily from 9 am to 9 pm. Plus, Tacos El Huequito is just a 7-minute walk from Alameda Central Park. It’s close to everywhere you’ll be exploring, so if you get hungry, you know where to go!
Mercaderes is a high-end restaurant that serves modern Mexican cuisine, meaning they use traditional styles of cooking but with a twist. It’s located in yet another historical building that’s only a 2-minute walk from the Zocalo. As such, it’s a great dining option in the historic center.
This restaurant is actually reasonably priced for how high quality it is. You can expect to pay anywhere from $290-$550 MXN ($16-$31 USD) for entrees. After a full day of exploring the city, sometimes sitting down for a nice dinner and cocktail is just what you need!
You could even start your day here with a tasty breakfast! However, I particularly love their lunch/dinner menu, and their duck carnitas really hit the spot.
It’s open Sundays to Wednesday from 8 am to 8 pm and Thursday to Saturday from 8 am – 10 pm. Whenever you come, bring your appetite!
El Cardenal is right off Alameda Central, near the Diego Rivera Museum. This traditional Mexican restaurant has been around since 1969 and also offers upscale dining options. They strive to make their dishes in an artistic fashion while keeping the traditional elements of the food.
El Cardenal is unique because it takes elements from every state of the country, amplifying the diverse culture within Mexico. This truly makes El Cardenal stand apart for a traditional yet special dining experience! It is open for breakfast as well, and let me tell you, it is worth a stop!
We came here in the morning to try one of their breakfast specialties. It included homemade bread, insanely delicious hot chocolate, and fresh milk cream. This restaurant is open every day of the week from 8 am to 6:30 pm so you have plenty of opportunities to stop by.
Whichever restaurant you choose, be sure to fill up and rest up – because day 2 is chock-full of even more awesome sightseeing!
Day 2: Morning – Visit Frida Kahlo Museum and Coyoacan
Day 2 takes you to a gem of Mexico City: the Frida Kahlo Museum. Frida Kahlo is a world-renowned painter who hails from Coyoacan, Mexico City. She is recognizable from her iconic unibrow, which makes many appearances in her self-portraits.
Frida Kahlo has become a beloved artist in society, but she wasn’t always that way. She came from humble beginnings, and her career peaked around the time of her first solo exhibit in Mexico City. Unfortunately, she died in 1954, just a year after the exhibit.
But like many great artists, she wasn’t fully appreciated in her own time. She really didn’t grow in popularity until the 1970s. This was when her painting, The Frame, was displayed in the Louvre. This made her the first Mexican artist to be featured in this famous museum.
Nowadays, her artistic style is very recognizable. It’s folkloric and fantastical with a heavy Mexican cultural foundation. Overall, she stands as a symbol of feminism, as well as Mexican nationalism and Indigenous traditions.
The Frida Kahlo Museum is located in the borough called Coyoacan in Mexico City. The museum is actually the house that she grew up in, called La Casa Azul. The house’s name translates to “The Blue House,” and this vibrantly colored museum definitely stands out!
The museum was established in 1957 after her husband, Diego Rivera, donated the home to become a collection of her art pieces. The museum also holds pieces from her personal life, along with paintings by Diego Rivera and other notable folkloric-style Mexican artists.
The Frida Museum is open every day from 10 am to 6 pm (but Wednesdays they open at 11 am). General admission is around $250 MXN (about $15 USD), and children over 6 are $25 MXN ($1.50 USD). Tickets can be purchased ahead of time here, and you’ll need to select your date and time of entry.
Coyoacan is a cool part of Mexico City, and not just because of the Frida Kahlo Museum. It’s worth exploring in its own right. So when we came here, we made a day of it!
Coyoacan is a colonial-style town with cobblestone streets and brightly colored buildings. It has some great cafes where you can sit and people-watch. This cute town is also famous for its luscious Jardin Hidalgo (Hidalgo Garden).
Also, you can visit the National Museum of Popular Culture to see even more contemporary and folk art. It’s open Tuesday to Thursday from 11 am – 6 pm and Friday to Sunday from 11 am – 7 pm. It’s a small museum, but entry is just $18 MXN (around $1 USD).
Overall, a day trip from Mexico City to Coyoacan is a must! It’s easy to fit both the National Museum of Popular Culture and the Frida Kahlo Museum into one day. And, of course, you’ll still have time for a coffee and a walk around town.
You can get to Coyoacan by Uber or Taxi and explore on your own. Alternatively, you can book a tour with transportation included! Personally, I always love booking tours as they include more and usually make your planning easier. If you feel the same, check out the three Frida Kahlo tours below!
Frida and Diego Museums Tour
Frida and Diego are about as classic of a pairing as Mexico and tacos – and this self-guided tour is a great way to experience the work of both artists! It gives you entrance to the Frida Kahlo Museum in Coyoacan and the Diego Rivera Anahuacalli Museum. This way, you get a good deal and won’t have to wait in line to buy tickets.
The Diego Rivera Anahuacalli Museum is also in Coyoacan. It’s about a 15-minute taxi ride south of the Frida Kahlo Museum. This small, charming museum is really one-of-a-kind, featuring work from Diego Rivera and other Mexican artists.
With both these museums, I highly recommend booking tickets in advance. Booking a tour ahead of time makes your day simpler, as the details are already planned out! The Frida Kahlo Museum occasionally sells out, so it’s best to play it safe! Since this is also a self-guided tour, you can move at your own pace and soak in your surroundings at your leisure.
At $36 USD per person, it’s also a good price. If you’re looking for a relaxed way to visit both historic sites, this is the tour for you! It’s offered Tuesday through Sunday but does sell out. So reserve your date online here!
Cycling, Churros, and Frida Tour
This cycling tour is a fun way to experience Coyoacan. These neighborhoods are full of historical homes and simply adorable. Riding a bike through them really helps you soak up this colonial-style city. And with a friendly guide, you’ll learn fun facts and feel super safe the whole journey!
You’ll spend a few hours biking around the city, stopping by a local market. When we went, we were treated to some agua fresca, churros, and tostadas! It was the perfect snack to keep us going.
Your bike journey will end at the Frida Kahlo Museum, where your VIP status lets you skip the lines. You can head straight in to explore Frida’s home.
This tour is scheduled to last about 4 hours and is a small group, keeping it intimate and fun! Tours leave from the bike shop promptly at 10 am Tuesday to Sunday (don’t be late!). The tour ends at the Frida Kahlo Museum, so there’s no need to cycle back. You can take your sweet time enjoying the artwork!
Your bike rentals, helmets, guide, and snacks are included in the price of $79 USD. Honestly, this is a good deal for everything that’s included. And since this is such a cute, beautiful area, cycling is a great way to see it!
This tour is popular for a reason and will sell out. So check availability and secure your spot here!
2-day Combo Tour
By now, we know that there is a lot to see in Mexico City! This comprehensive tour takes you to so many attractions that it actually lasts for two days! It’s a great introduction to the city if this is your first time visiting. Also, it really takes the pressure off planning.
You’ll meet at a central meeting point each day and have a driver and guide the whole time. In total, you’ll hit six of Mexico City’s top sights on this epic 2-day tour.
Day one is jam-packed as you visit the Aztec ruins of Teotihuacan, the Guadalupe Shrine, and Tlatelolco. Tlatelolco used to be the Aztec capital, and our guide shared interesting stories as we explored this archaeological site.
My favorite destination on day one is definitely Teotihuacan. A tour to Teotihuacan from Mexico City is easily one of my must-dos. This ancient city was HUGE and the ruins really tell its story well. But throughout the day, you’ll also make little stops at notable places in between. This tour just keeps on giving!
Day two’s main attractions are the canals of Xochimilco, Coyoacan, the National University, and of course, the Frida Kahlo Museum! Most of these sights are outside the city center, so having transportation makes all the difference!
At the floating gardens of Xochimilco, you’ll hop aboard a colorful boat. Sailing for roughly an hour, this is a magical experience. From the water, you’ll listen to festive music and can buy tasty snacks from boat vendors.
The National University was also quite impressive in its own right. It was built in 1551 and is a UNESCO-listed campus (with more Diego Rivera murals!).
This tour includes entrance into all locations and guides, as well as transportation and a tequila tasting. Food and drinks are not included, but there will be stops to purchase some, so bring cash!
This is a great way to see the city for the first time, and truly includes so much! It can be booked online for $106 USD per person – which is a steal for a 2-day tour! To snag this awesome deal, book your 2-day Mexico City tour online here!
Why We Book Tours with Viator
Viator is a trusted online booking system for tours around the world! We almost always book our tours using Viator for a couple of reasons:
- Free cancellation on most tours – Most of the tours on Viator allow you to cancel and get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. This is handy in case plans change, or if booking an outdoor activity, the weather forecast is looking grim.
- Reserve now and pay later – You can secure your spot on some of the most popular tours well in advance and not pay until closer to the day of the tour.
- Pay in your chosen currency – Avoid costly international transaction fees by choosing to pay in your home currency.
- Peace of mind – When booking with tour operators you find in person on the street or in small booking offices, you are often promised one thing and given another. This online platform holds tour operators accountable with a written description of inclusions as well as the opportunity for customers to leave reviews.
Where to Eat in Coyoacan
Cochinita Country Coyoacán
This family-owned restaurant sits right next to the Frida Kahlo Museum, making it a great lunch stop after your morning at the museum! Cochinita Country Coyoacan makes traditional Mexican fare. But it’s more than just tacos and tortas – they have all sorts of dishes!
While it has a cute little cafe vibe, this place also has incredible food. They specialize in cuisine from the Yucatan Peninsula. When we went, we loved their cochinita pibil, which is a slow-roasted super juicy pork. And since the most expensive item on the menu is $260 MXN (about $15 USD), you can really enjoy the food for a decent price!
Cochinita Country Coyoacan is open every day except Monday from 9 am to 9 pm. It can get a little crowded around mealtime, so plan your day accordingly.
Corazón de Maguey
Corazón de Maguey is quite a treat, as it focuses on Mezcal and pairs it with tasty Mexican dishes. It has a lively atmosphere, about as vibrant as Frida Kahlo herself. Some of their most popular dishes are the Tikin Xic fish (seabass) or the shrimp tacos!
This restaurant is only a 10-minute walk from the Frida Museum and is open from 8 am to 11 pm every day of the week (and it stays open even later Fridays and Saturdays). It’s a great spot no matter if you’re going for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or drinks.
Madre Cocina Mexicana
This is where you go if you’re looking for some good home cooking. Madre Cocina Mexicana, which translates to “mother’s Mexican kitchen,” is some of the best food you can find in Coyoacan. Their specialty is Chilaquiles Rellenos, and you better believe they make them flavorful and spicy!
It’s located in the Coyoacan Market, along with so many other yummy restaurants. So if you want an array of options, I suggest coming here.
Madre Cocina Mexicana is open from 8 am to 4 pm every day of the week. It’s a quick 6-minute walk from the Frida Kahlo Museum and also lets you experience the culture of the market! Be sure to check this one out.
Related Read: If you love tequila, visit the town where it all began, Tequila! You can read our ultimate guide on Tequila, Jalisco here.
Day 2: Midday – Explore La Condesa and Roma
After you’ve spent some time at the Frida Kahlo Museum, the next area to check out is La Condesa and La Roma. These are both cute colonial neighborhoods that sit right next to each other in Mexico City.
You’ll want to grab an Uber from Coyoacan, as it’s about a 30-minute car ride. But once you are in this area, it is super walkable and the safest area of the city.
The best place to start is at Parque Mexico, which is right in the center of it all. This is an expansive 22-acre (9-hectare) park and an outside oasis in the middle of the city. Take a stroll, and enjoy the ponds, fountains, and sculptures all around!
They are known for their high-quality beef tacos – and I can attest that they’re amazing. The owners are so friendly and are actually also the butchers, so you know the food you’re eating is fresh. Tacos Don Juan opens daily at 10:15 am, closing at 4:30 pm on weekdays and 2:30 pm on weekends. Overall, it’s the perfect Mexcian lunch stop!
I love simply exploring La Condesa and La Roma, they are great areas to wander around because there are a ton of boutiques, galleries, and coffee shops. One of my favorite things to do here is simply stop for a coffee and take in the beautiful area!
If you’re feeling up to more walking, you can make your way to Bosque de Chapultepec. This is one of the largest city parks in Mexico and is about a 17-minute walk from La Condesa. If you need a break from the concrete jungle, this is the place to go! I’d use this time to slow down and really enjoy being in Mexico City!
Consider this taco tour of the area in the afternoon
I always think that the best ways to experience a city are through a local’s perspective – and through food, of course! So a food tour through La Roma is the ideal way to learn about the food, culture, and hidden gems of the city!
This 2.5-hour taco tour takes you to five different locations, letting you try an array of foods. As you chow down, your local guide will share the history and cultural significance of the area and the food you’re eating!
This is an excellent way to get to know the city, make new friends, and eat some delicious food. Tours start at 5 pm daily from Taqueria Orinoco. Wear walking shoes and bring that appetite. You’ll be exploring the neighborhood, ending at Churreria El Moro with a local dessert!
For $63 USD, you’ll get five dishes and two beverages (including one alcoholic). This tour requires two people to book. So grab your partner, friends, or family members and secure your spot online here!
Related Read: If you love sampling local cuisine, try one of these awesome taco tours in Cancun!
Where to Eat in La Condesa and Roma
Lardo (La Condesa)
If you’re getting a little tired of traditional Mexican food, Lardo gives it a new spin! It is a Mexican-European blend, focusing on Italian fusion and using only the freshest ingredients. In fact, their dishes change depending on what’s in season. Lardo has a modern vibe and great cocktails, and you must try their creative pizzas!
This restaurant is moderately priced and considered fine casual dining. It’s open every day from 7:30 am to 11 pm, so you can catch them for breakfast, lunch, or dinner! However, they do close early on Sundays (at 5 pm).
Merkavá (La Condesa)
Merkavá is another non-traditional restaurant, this time focusing on hummus and Israeli dishes! These dishes are family-style, so you get to try a little bit of everything (which we love doing!).
Mediterranean-inspired food is always fresh and light but oh-so-incredibly tasty. It will be a nice change from all the street food of Mexico. The highlight of the menu is hummus, and here, it’s served in a variety of ways. And bonus: Merkava is actually pretty affordable for such high-quality food!
It’s located right next to Parque Mexico, so it’s a great lunch or dinner stop after walking around. And if it’s a particularly hot day, their refreshing cuisine hits the spot. Merkava is open from 1 pm to 12 am Tuesday through Saturday, 1 pm to 6 pm on Sundays, and is closed Mondays.
Finally, you can head to La Roma to dine at Marlindo. Marlindo is a seafood restaurant that takes influence from Baja California. These dishes include the freshest seafood, and the place has a surfer-chic vibe.
It’s more casual than the other restaurants on this list, which works in its favor. People call this place “unpretentious and affordable,” so we love coming here when we’re in the mood for a low-key but tasty meal.
Marlindo is a 15-minute walk from Parque Mexico, so it’s pretty centrally located! It’s open from noon to 7 pm Monday through Thursday and from 11 am to 8 pm Friday through Sunday. Many places are closed Mondays, so this is a great choice if you’re exploring on this day!
Day 2: Afternoon – Museo Nacional de Antropología
Visiting the Museo Nacional de Antropologia is a great afternoon activity. Since it’s located just on the other side of Bosque de Chapultepec, it’s a bit of a walk, and I recommend catching an Uber. If you plan on doing the taco tour, hit the museum first because the taco tour leaves at 5 pm.
Mexico City is one of the coolest cities in Latin America – and one of its oldest. As such, it’s no wonder this famous anthropology museum holds artifacts dating all the way back to the Mayan civilization. With such a long, fascinating history, we are fortunate enough to discover these ancient relics.
Walking through this museum will help you learn more about all the people who inhabited Mexico. There were so many different settlers and countries that made their way through Mexico. And this museum is so diverse and tells a beautiful story of how the country came to be.
You could easily spend a few hours exploring the museum. It’s open from 10 am to 6 pm, Tuesday through Sunday. It is $90 MXN (around $5 USD) to enter, and they provide free guided visits on Tuesday and Saturday at 10 am and 12 pm!
However, if you’re looking to gain more in-depth knowledge at the Museo Nacional de Antropologia, there are some great guided tours!
This private 3-hour walking tour is led by certified guides who are great storytellers. Not only do they give you historical information, but they paint a picture that really brings these artifacts – and each time period – alive. It’s pretty incredible to learn how deep this history goes.
This private tour is offered Tuesday through Saturday at 10 am and occasionally at 2:30 pm as well. The cost ranges from $45-$120 USD per person, depending on your group size (15 people max). For two people, it’ll be $66 USD per person. This covers entry to the museum and a 3-hour private tour, so you get the knowledgeable guide all to yourself!
If you want a private tour that covers more than the Anthropology Museum, this private tour of Mexico City is for you! In addition to the National Anthropology Museum, this tour visits the Zocalo, Metropolitan Cathedral, and the National Palace. It’s also great because it includes round-trip transportation from your hotel. Your group just needs to be ready for pick-up and enjoy the day!
Since it’s just your private group, you’ll get personalized attention from a wonderful guide. They’ll pick you up around 9 or 10 am. Over the course of four hours, you’ll visit these top sights while your guide explains each. You’ll spend two hours in the National Anthropology Museum, where they go into detail about the history of the museum and the city!
This tour costs between $60-$290 USD per person depending on group size (15 max). For two people, expect to pay $150 USD each. This covers entry tickets, roundtrip transportation, and your guide. So for a stress-free private experience, check availability and book this tour here!
If you’re looking for a classic shared tour, go for this 2.5-hour guided tour! For just $23 USD, you’ll get admission tickets and a professional guide. This is a great tour option for those who want to learn more about the museum without breaking the bank!
Your guide will lead the group to all the exhibits and be a great source of knowledge! Plus, 2.5 hours felt like the perfect amount of time to experience the museum without getting overloaded with information. It’s offered Tuesday through Sunday at 9 am. For all the anthropological knowledge at a fraction of the price, book your shared tour online here.
Day 2: Night – Lucha Libre
There’s no way you can visit here without seeing a Lucha Libre show in Mexico City. Lucha Libre runs deep in Mexico City’s culture, and is one of the most entertaining and surprising experiences I had in the city! It is best described as theatrical wrestling, and the energy in the arena is palpable.
While you certainly can go to a Lucha Libre show on your own, I always recommend booking a tour. These tours offer other fun experiences, like taco and mezcal tastings, and some are guided by former luchadors! Guides help you understand what is going on in the show because it can get a little wild!
Best Night Ever Tour
This Best Night Ever Tour includes tacos, a tequila tasting, beer, and of course, Lucha Libre! You’ll first hit a taqueria, then a cantina (like a pub) to taste some mezcal, Mexico’s famous spirit. When we went, we also tried pulque – a milky liquor made from sap. Your group will then head to the famous Arena Mexico for the highlight of the evening, the Lucha Libre show!
This tour begins at a meeting point in the La Roma neighborhood (which will work great if you’re already there). However, on Saturdays, you’ll meet your group in the city center instead. Tours start at 6 pm on Tuesdays, 7 pm on Fridays, 6:30 pm on Saturdays, and 3:30 pm on Sundays. It’s open to all ages, although you must be 18 to drink alcohol.
This tour costs $94 USD per person, including everything we mentioned, along with a surprise souvenir! It’s called the Best Night Ever Tour for a reason … so experience it yourself by booking it online here!
Lucha Libre and Palacio de Bellas Artes
This Lucha Libre tour is very similar to the tour above, except you’ll also visit the Palacio de Bellas Artes! It’s a walking tour, mezcal tasting, and Lucha Libre experience all wrapped into one!
You’ll meet your guide at the Palacio de Bellas Artes. Wear comfy shoes since you’ll walk from place to place. And as you do, your guide will share info about the city’s top sights.
Although this tour doesn’t include tacos, it does take you to a mezcaleria to taste this classic drink. Here, your former luchador guide will explain all about the sport as you sip mezcal. Underage guests will be offered non-alcoholic beverages instead. By the time you’re done, you’ll understand the show and be super hyped for the event!
This tour takes place on Tuesdays at 5:30 pm, Fridays at 6:30 pm, and Sundays at 3 pm. The whole thing lasts about 4.5 hours, ending at the Arena Mexico (where the show takes place). This tour is $97 USD, including everything mentioned above plus a surprise souvenir.
For an evening full of mezcal and Lucha Libre, book this amazing experience here!
Day 3: Morning and Day – Teotihuacán Tour
We have saved the best for last on your three-day Mexico City itinerary. The ancient city of Teotihuacan is a massive archeological ruin site located just outside of the city limits. If you love architecture, history, or culture, it’s an absolute must-see! And honestly, the whole place is just so incredible, it’s the perfect way to end your trip.
Teotihuacan dates back to 400 B.C., although it’s actually unknown who created this ancient city. Legend says that Teotihuacan is where the gods were made because the origins of this city are so mysterious.
When we visited, we noticed there were remnants of a mix of cultures. And in its heyday, Teotihuacan was the sixth largest city in the world, holding anywhere between 125,000 to 200,000 people!
When we strolled down the Avenue of the Dead, we were awe-struck by the sheer size of these ruins. The Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Moon are two giant structures here (and some of the largest pyramids in the world!).
Today, this ancient city is a popular attraction for locals and tourists alike. Its close proximity to Mexico City (about 50 km/30 miles) makes it more accessible than other famous ruins, such as Chichen Itza. Teotihuacan is honestly just as impressive but less busy than other historic ruin sites in Mexico.
Entrance to Teotihuacan is about $85 MXN ($5 USD) which is paid in cash upon arrival. The site is open from 8 am to 5 pm. Because the ruins are a bit outside of the city, you’ll either have to drive a rental car or catch a bus.
Another option is to book a guided tour, as these all include transportation from Mexico City. Tours are great because they take the stress out of navigating the city and have some pretty cool activities included! If you want to learn more, read my guide on the best Teotihuacan tours from Mexico City. But to make it easy, I’ve highlighted some of my favorites below!
1. Hot Air Balloon Flight over Teotihuacan from Mexico City
This Hot Air Balloon Flight over Teotihuacan is one of the most unique experiences you can have in Mexico City! Not only will you get to see the magnificent ruins, but you’ll see them from an aerial view as you soar by in a hot air balloon!
This is an early morning experience with hotel pick-up at 4 am. But the early wake-up is well worth it since you’ll have a sunrise hot air balloon flight over the ruins. The timing is absolutely magical, and you’ll watch the sun slowly appear over the pyramids. Seeing the other balloons fill the sky is also quite special – just check out the photo above!
The flight itself is 30-50 minutes. This tour also includes coffee, breakfast, and a ceremony where you’ll get a certificate of completion. It’s a nice way to honor the experience, and you’ll have a souvenir to remember it by!
There are a few options when booking your hot air balloon flight. If you don’t require transportation, it costs $164 USD, and you can meet your group by the ruins. However, I’d strongly recommend including transport. Even if you rented a car, driving several hours that early in the morning isn’t my idea of fun. With a tour, you can doze off en route!
With roundtrip transportation from your hotel in Mexico City, the tour is $189 USD for adults and $164 USD for children (ages 5-12). Guests must be at least 5 years old to fly, and the experience includes everything we mentioned above.
Tours last about 6 hours, including driving time. However, there is also an option to explore the ruins on foot after your flight. This will extend your tour by three hours – which I feel is worth it! You’ll be able to see this ancient city from two completely different perspectives. To enter the ruins, you’ll need to bring the $85 MXN ($5 USD) entrance fee in cash since it’s not included.
For this once-in-a-lifetime experience, book your hot air balloon flight over Teotihuacan here!
2. Teotihuacan, Guadalupe Shrine, Tlatelolco, and Tequila Tasting Tour
This 9-hour tour takes you to some of the most notable sights in Mexico City! You’ll have a great overview of the area, visiting archeological and religious landmarks as well as enjoying an authentic meal and tequila tasting!
You’ll have the chance to visit Tlatelolco, which is the biggest market of the Aztec empire and is right in Mexico City. Next, you’ll head to the Shrine of Guadalupe, one of the most visited catholic sites in the world. And don’t worry, this tour also includes lunch at a local restaurant with a tequila tasting.
The highlight of this tour for me is definitely visiting the historic Teotihuacan. Here, you’ll get a full two hours of exploring! This is the type of place you need to see to believe. There’s really nothing like these massive pyramids and ancient structures.
This tour includes roundtrip transportation – just remember to request pick-up at the time of booking. The experience also covers the tequila tasting and entrance fees but does not include lunch. It costs $55 USD per person, which is an awesome price for a full-day tour if you ask me!
Because this tour is 9 hours long, you won’t be able to do the food tour we have planned next. However, you could do a Lucha Libre tour in the evening and the food tour another day!
To see many sights in one day, check availability and book this Teotihuacan tour here!
3. Teotihuacan Private Tour from Mexico City
If you want a more personalized experience, book this private Teotihuacan tour. We love private tours because you get to have one-on-one time with your guide, who are experts in their field. Plus, you can move at your own pace! This is great for a place like Teotihuacan, as there is so much to see that you really don’t want to feel rushed.
No need to worry about logistics – roundtrip transportation in an air-conditioned vehicle is included. I also love that this is a morning tour, so you can experience the ruins without all the crowds. Just be ready for pick up around 8 am and wear comfy walking shoes and sunscreen!
You’ll explore Teotihuacan for a few hours as your guide details all the fascinating features. Don’t be shy to ask questions, either! I find these guides are super friendly and knowledgeable, and they love sharing their expertise!
After visiting the ruins, this tour will take you to try local drinks like tequila and mezcal! This tour includes transportation from the city, entrance fees, and your tequila tasting. Bring extra cash for any souvenirs and food. It costs $106-$120 per adult, depending on your group size (minimum 2, maximum 13).
For a private experience, don’t hesitate to reserve this tour in advance!
Related Read: History buffs will also want to check out the best tours of Chichen Itza from Cancun!
Day 3: Afternoon/Night – Mexican Cooking Class and Cocktails in Mexico City
Your final activity in Mexico City is a skill that can be taken home with you! This Mexican Cooking Class and Cocktails is a fun and new way to experience the city. Nothing connects you with the culture better than food and drink. So if you’re a foodie, budding chef, or just love hands-on activities, this class is for you!
You’ll be led by a local who is passionate about food and excited to share their craft with you. Over the course of 3.5 hours, you’ll learn to make starters and entrees that are classic to Mexico, as well as some tasty drinks!
You’ll make handmade tortillas and salsa and a tequila cocktail. When we went, we made a ginger lemonade with mezcal that was zesty and strong but refreshing all at once!
The entree varies on the seasonal availability of ingredients, so you get the freshest meal possible. Regardless of what’s in season, prepare yourself for something delicious. They can also accommodate vegetarians, so let them know of any dietary requests at the time of booking.
This is a small tour of only six people, so you can get to know some other people in an intimate setting. Tours are offered daily at 11:30 am and 5 pm and take place in the Bucareli kitchen. All the food, drinks, cooking equipment, and your professional chef/teacher are covered in the $121 USD price. Trust me, it’s guaranteed that you won’t leave hungry!
What better place to learn how to cook Mexican cuisine than in Mexico City?! So, secure your spot in this class by registering here!
Other Activities to do While in Mexico City
If you’re staying longer than 3 days in Mexico City, we’ve got you covered. There are many more fun things to do in Mexico City. Trust me, you’ll have no problem filling that extra time in this bustling city. To give you an idea of some other activities, I’ve highlighted our favorites below!
- Soak in hot springs – If you’re looking to escape the city for a day, the crystal-blue waters of Las Grutas de Tolantongo Hot Springs are the perfect remedy. They’re set against a backdrop of gorgeous mountains and one of the most popular destinations in Mexico. It’s a bit of a drive, though, which is why I recommend this full-day tour.
- Shop for local souvenirs – If you want to go shopping or find some local souvenirs, head to the La Ciudadela Artisanal Market. This market showcases artists’ work from around the country for very affordable prices – and the selection is huge!
- Visit a butterfly reserve – The Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve is about 2 hours from Mexico City and is home to millions of butterflies. Butterflies visit this UNESCO World Heritage site between November and March, but January and February is the best time to come. The easiest way to get there is by taking this tour from Mexico City.
- Join a Hop-on Hop-off bus tour – The Hop-on-Hop-off bus tour is a great way to see multiple neighborhoods on a budget! And if you like what you see, you have the flexibility to hop off and explore it further. Turibus also offers a hop-on hop-off tour stopping at many of the sights I mentioned on this itinerary!
- Day trip to Puebla and Cholula – If you have a few extra days, visit the towns of Puebla and Cholula! These charming towns have fascinating temples, museums, and stunning town squares. On this organized tour to both cities, you’ll get a feel for life outside the capital.
Where to Stay in Mexico City
Mexico City is massive, and there are lots of different areas to stay in. For this reason, we wrote a full guide on the best areas to stay in Mexico City as well as the best hostels in Mexico City! These blogs should help you choose an awesome hotel for your stay!
However, for a quick overview, here are some of my top recommendations.
Luxury – $$$
For luxury travelers, Casa Malí by Dominion Boutique Hotel is a top choice. This incredible luxury hotel in the heart of La Condesa offers a very convenient location, close to iconic city landmarks such as the Angel of Independence and Chapultepec Castle. It also has huge studio rooms starting at $200 USD, a spacious and cozy terrace, a gym, and even laundry and barbecue facilities for all guests.
Mid-range – $$
Hotel MX Roma is a clean, medium-budget hotel in La Roma, close to shops, bars, and restaurants. It has both standard and family rooms equipped with air conditioning, private bathrooms, free Wi-Fi, and flat-screen satellite TV. It offers a space with a terrace to enjoy with family or friends, private parking, a gym, free bikes, and 24-hour front desk service. It’s also an allergy-free property, so there’s no smoking and they use hypoallergenic products.
Rooms run $150 USD in peak season. However, you can snag one as cheap as $70 USD a night when you book in advance online!
Budget – $
For budget travelers, the Selina Hostel in downtown Mexico City is a great, well-known chain. I stayed here during one of my visits and loved the downtown location. Although the area may seem unsafe to some, it’s the historic center of Mexico City and where I spent most of my time. They have a common area, pool table, board games, and a bar – so it’s easy to meet others. If working remotely, there’s also a coworking space for an extra fee.
Renting a Car in Mexico
Undoubtedly, one of the best ways to get around Mexico is in a rental car.
I struggled to get around by bus and taxi for the longest time. But after renting a car in Cancun in 2023, I never looked back. It allowed me to explore the country without worrying about tours or taxis. It was why I fell in love with Mexico and eventually decided to live here periodically.
I refuse to use local services whenever I rent a car in Mexico. The truth is they sometimes can’t be trusted or come with hidden fees (or costly insurance that doesn’t make sense.) There are even rental car scams! So instead, I use Discover Cars, the company most experienced travelers or ex-pats in Mexico recommend.
The rates on Discover Cars are cheap, too, with the average rental costing around $25 USD per day. Full coverage insurance can be added for an extra $10 USD a day too.
Driving in Mexico also only requires a driver’s license using the Roman alphabet. If yours uses another like Japan and China, you simply need an international driving permit.
Insurance is required, but if you book with Discover Cars and get the full coverage, that’s all you need! Oh, and being over 18 is required, and if you’re over 25, your rental will be much cheaper!
Don’t get Caught without Travel Insurance!
We never travel without travel insurance! We’ve had a few instances during our travels when one of us has ended up in the hospital, and travel insurance has saved us thousands of dollars over the years!
SafetyWing is our go-to insurance, we both have policies with them whenever we travel.
They offer travel medical insurance that’s super affordable (only $45 USD per 4 weeks!)The only thing to note is that the insurance must be purchased once you’ve left your home country – we typically buy it as soon as we land at the airport.
We’ve personally used SafetyWing for many different trips, and we’ve been reimbursed for countless expenses when we’ve fallen ill. SafetyWing even covered our flights back to Canada in full when the pandemic first happened (when last-minute flights before the borders closed were super expensive!) While most travel insurance companies left people stranded, SafetyWing fully reimbursed us for our last-minute, pricey flights!
Also, because it is so affordable, there really is no excuse not to take out a policy. Check prices and get a quote online here with SafetyWing (you can even take out a policy if you’re already traveling!)
Thanks for reading!
There you have it – an epic 3-day itinerary for Mexico City! I’ve visited this city several times, and this schedule packs in all the best sights. In just three days, you’ll get a solid feel for the area and have an amazing time. So if you’re planning a short trip, we hope this guide has helped!
If you’re traveling throughout the country, check out our other blogs about Mexico. We cover everything from location guides to the best tours and beyond. To give you an idea, I’ve linked to some articles below.