Mexico City - Travel Guide
Mexico’s metropolitan capital is a paradise for lovers of urban life, boasting fantastic food, vibrant nightlife, and a host of cultural sights. In the past, for many of Mexico’s international visitors, the city was merely seen as a stop on the way to one of the country's coastal resorts, but it is rapidly becoming a popular destination in its own right.
Mexican cuisine is world famous, and the city has a seemingly infinite selection of fantastic places to eat.
Al Pastor, a delicious taco made with pork grilled on a kebab-style spit, is a delicious dish native to the city, and is a must try when visiting. Across the city there are literally thousands of restaurants and stalls serving Al Pastor, but few are as delicious as those at El Vilsito, a small, unassuming taqueria which by day, doubles up as a car repair garage!
Prefer your tacos plant based? Por Siempre, a vegan taqueria in the Roma Norte neighborhood, makes fantastic animal-free versions of classic Mexican dishes, including a delicious, seitan-based Al Pastor.
Slightly less traditional, but equally excellent: Cicatriz serves European style small plates with a Mexican twist, along with some great natural wines, and local craft beers, while Rosetta Bakery offers some of the capital’s most delicious baked goods.
Tokyo Listening Bar, an intimate speakeasy based on Japan’s famed vinyl bars, is a great place to sip a cocktail and listen to some eclectic sounds, whilst Salón Los Angeles, a beautiful art-deco ballroom built in 1937, is a must visit for Salsa fans.
For more contemporary music, the up-and-coming Juarez neighbourhood is home to a number of late-night bars and clubs, including YuYu: a multi roomed venue incorporating a record shop, cocktail bar, and subterranean club soundtracked by some of the most exciting names in underground electronic music.
If you fancy trying something new, visit one of the city’s many Pulquerias: small taverns that specialize in Pulque, a traditional drink, native to central mexico, made from the fermented sap of the Maguey plant. Pulqueria Los Insurgentes, is a lively, four floor, Pulqueria, complete with a roof terrace and uptempo soundtrack, or for a more intimate experience, La Pirata, on the fringes of the Napoles neighbourhood, is popular with local workers.
What to do
The city has a host of world-class museums, notably the excellent National Anthropology Museum: an excellent space to discover more about the country’s storied past and it’s many indegionous cultures; Or for art lovers, The Frida Kahlo Museum, Museo Soumaya and Museo Nacional de Arte are just some of the many fantastic art galleries on offer.
The city's numerous markets are the beating hearts of their respective neighbourhoods and are great places to immerse yourself in Mexican culture. The biggest, and certainly one of the most interesting is La Lagunilla, a weekly, Sunday flea market, offering antiques, clothing, and everything in between.
In the southern fringes of the city lies Xoximilco, a World Heritage Site, consisting of an ancient network of canals built by the Aztecs as transport routes. Visitors can float along the river on one of the traditional, gondola-style boats, taking in the sights, and visiting one of the many, tiny islands along the way.
Slightly further afield, but close enough for a day trip, is the city of Puebla: renowned for its colourful, colonial architecture, unique cuisine, and artisanal crafts; whilst Teotihuacan, an ancient Mayan City which includes several, well preserved pyramids, is also easily reachable from the capital.
Whatever your interests, this vibrant metropolis has something for you, and is the perfect place to start your Mexican adventure!