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What to do in Mexico City and surroundings

There are thousands of things you can do in this city, so many that if you only come for a few days of travel, it is likely that you will be left with the desire to return, because the food, the views, the museums and the culture are the things that make people want to visit Mexico City again.




To be honest, I can't tell you exactly about the experience as a tourist because I was born there, however... I don't live there anymore, plus I lived only the first years of my life there, that's why I can talk to you a little from the side of tourist who goes three or four times a year to visit it. So let's get started!


First of all...


You must know things that many people don't tell you because they are tourists who come from other states or countries:

  1. Try to always be attentive to people. I know that maybe you come from a place where it is not common to say "good morning / good afternoon" on the streets to unknown people, but here in Mexico it is actually very common to hear it and if you want to create friends instead of enemies, I recommend you that you say it even when there are some who won't respond back or will look at you strangely.

  2. Be nice when someone is taking good care of you and leave a tip. Most of the time you will receive good attention from the places where you are, the best thing you can do is respond to them in the same way.

  3. For nothing in the world, drink water from any tap, the water in Mexico is not drinkable and can cause serious illnesses, that's why you will see jugs of water in the houses or bottles of water in your hotel room.

  4. If you want to try street food, try to go to places that have people. There are many food stalls that may not be the best option because you can end up getting sick and not enjoying the rest of your trip.

Accommodation:


If you come on a trip to this city you will definitely want to stay in an area that is relatively close to most of the things you will be visiting. In my case, despite having family and friends who live there, I've visited the city to be a tourist and I recommend four areas where you can stay:

  • Colonia Roma (Norte or Sur)

  • La Condesa

  • La Reforma street

  • Polanco (it's a little more expensive than the rest)

These are the best in my opinion and they are also areas where you will find everything:

- Hotels from $ 40usd per night.

- Airbnbs shared places from $ 25usd per night or if you want the entire place from $ 40usd.

- Hostels from $ 20usd per night.





Transport:


If you go from the airport to your place of accommodation, I recommend that you use Uber or one of the transport applications, personally the one that I like the most and it works is the one that I mention, but apps such as: Cabify, Didi are also used. It costs you between 5usd to a maximum of 15usd if you arrived in "la hora pico", which would mean the time of traffic.


  • Uber is the app that I use the most when I go to Mexico City, even in the traffic hours it's not as expensive as you think, most of the trips will cost less than $ 5usd. If you want to avoid a lot of traffic, try not to go out at times such as work and school entry, lunch and work and school exits. You will find traffic even when you are not at those times, but believe me you do not want to know what it's like to be stopped for hours in rush hour traffic.


I do not recommend renting a car if you are only going to be in the city, it is not worth it, but if I do recommend it if you are thinking of traveling outside the city, I suggest you buy the tag pase to use the famous "second floor" and pass the booths found throughout the country faster. Here is the link where you can get it:



For the city, I highly recommend that you use the city's famous turibus, it costs less than $15usd a day and has almost all the tourist routes to get on and off as many times as you want during the day. I used it for two days on one occasion when I spent the Christmas holidays with my whole family (uncles, cousins, parents, brothers) and it was totally worth it.

If you want to set aside your places in the turibus I leave you here the link:





Food:


Food is one of the easiest and at the same time complicated things to explain hahaha, Mexico has a lot of diversity of dishes but also a lot of places where you can eat at very affordable prices. There are places where you can eat with less than $ 5usd and others where you can get meals up to $ 500usd.


You can find taquerías in street or local stalls, most of the time you will find a taco for less than $ 1usd, whether or not it is a well-known place. You can look to eat dishes like: flautas, huaraches, pambazos, quesadillas fritas, cecina, pozole, barbacoa, carnitas, tacos de canasta, enfrijoladas, tostadas, sopes, tortas, enchiladas, gorditas, esquites or elotes, water (jamaica, horchata, tamarindo), mole, chiles en nogada, aguachile, tacos de pescado, birria, tamales, tamales oaxaqueños, ceviche, huevos rancheros, y more.


While for desserts or sweets that are not spicy they are: churros, arroz con leche, pastel de tres leches, buñuelos, flan, pan de elote, nieves, gelatinas de leche, sweet bread like conchas, polvorones, garibaldi, gorditas de nata. And drinks like café de olla, atole, champurrado, rompope,

If you go to a party like the Day of the Dead or the Day of the three Magic Kings try: pan de muerto or rosca de reyes.


Places that I recommend to go, there are not many but they are places which I visit when I can:

- El Tizoncito (Condesa)

-Taquería "Los Picudos"

- La casa de Toño

- Heladería "La Roxy"

- Churros "El moro"

For those of you who are vegetarians (like me) or vegans:

- Por Siempre Vegana


Buying groceries is always going to be cheaper of course. If you're thinking doing it is great, you'll easily find grocery shops and it depends on how many days and people but if you come let's say for a week and there's four of you, the whole thing will cost approximately $40usd.



Where to go:


Now we come to one of the most important things. The places you can visit. I recommend you first of all to use sunscreen, there will be times when it is raining but most of the year, the weather is quite good, not very cold or very hot but still wear sunscreen because the sun is very strong when there are no clouds and there's the possibility of getting sun burns while walking.


El centro histórico: If you want to know the history and the beginnings of the city, this is the perfect place. You will find everything in this place and it can take a few hours or days to visit it. El Palacio de Bellas Artes ($4usd), la plaza Garibaldi, el zócalo, Palacio Nacional y la Catedral Metropolitana are places that must be visited. You can go to Templo Mayor museum if it is open, a museum with history and pre-Hispanic exhibitions.


Camina por la calle "la Reforma": This is undoubtedly one of my favorites, it is a street that is usually full of movement and before Covid-19, it was a street used to celebrate like when Mexico won a World Cup match. It is full of restaurants, buildings with very important companies, hotels, nature, there you can see different monuments and the famous Angel de la Independencia.


El museo de Antropología: If you are one of those people who enjoys going to museums and learning about ancient history, I highly recommend visiting this museum ($ 3usd) if it is open. I think it's one of the most beautiful museums in the city and full of history about the ancient civilizations that inhabited Mexico.


Visita el parque Chapultepec: everyone knows the famous park of Central Park in New York, well in Mexico City there's the great park of Chapultepec where there are many activities that you can do. Inside you have the zoo (free); place where the only pandas in Latin America live, some museums and the famous Castillo de Chapultepec ($4usd) which is a must in the places of visit.




Visita Polanco: If you want a more modern place you can visit Polanco and go to the Museum Soumaya ($11usd) or to the aquarium Inbursa ($12usd). Visit the Antara shopping mall and eat in the fancy restaurants.


La casa azul: For those who like art and know the artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, this was the house where the painters lived and in this museum ($ 13usd / $ 14usd) you will be able to appreciate some of their paintings along with love letters, personal things, among others.


La lucha libre: if I'm honest, I'm not a big fan of this attraction, however I've heard from many friends who went and had a great time. If it's already open to public, you could go and have a memorable afternoon.


Las trajineras de Xochimilco: This attraction is a little removed from where the main attractions are but it is one of the experiences that I recommend you do, especially if you come with friends or family to spend a fun afternoon, singing and spending time in some kind of boat called "trajinera". If you are one of those who like scary attractions, you can also visit la Isla de las muñecas that is also located in Xochimilco. There are different types of packages, I recommend that you visit this page to check prices:



Teotihuacan: Do you want to know one of the most important civilizations in Mexico? then you must visit this place with two of the most important pyramids in the country and a tour full of a lot of historical knowledge. It is only hour and a half away from the city and the entrance is only $ 4usd. It opens from Monday to Saturday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm and it is very easy to get there. You can go by car or you can schedule a visit to this place with an agency.


I'm not sure if I'm forgetting something. There are a lot of museums; Mexico City is the second place in the world with most museums so if you like to go to museums, you can spend your whole trip going to them hahaha. As I said before, there are thousands of activities to do in the city, many things that if you are not native, may surprise you. And no, it's not the typical "donkeys, hats and guns" that is said all over the world, nor is the city where you cannot walk outside because it's highly dangerous, so you will have to come visit to check it out!


Enjoy your trip!!


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