Are you planning a trip to Mexico City? Having grown up listening to horror stories told by my friends’ parents who used to live there, I was scared. But then I was presented with the opportunity to travel to Mexico City for three days, so I tossed all warnings over my shoulder and booked a flight leaving in a few days.
The truth is, it was not scary at all. Of course, as with any huge city (Mexico City has the largest population in all of North America), it’s extremely important to take precautions and be aware of your surroundings. Still, I felt very safe wandering around alone! If you’re short on time exploring this vast city, here is what I suggest for a 3 day itinerary.
WALK AROUND CENTRO HISTORICO
The first thing you should do after landing is go on a walking tour of Mexico City’s historical center or Centro Histórico. Start at the Zócalo, the main square where you can enter the National Palace and Metropolitan Cathedral free of charge. Walk further down and admire the beautiful architecture inside the Postal Palace. Then continue along and enjoy a meal inside Casa de los Azulejos (House of Tiles). One block over take lots of pictures of Palacio de Bellas Artes either inside the Sears building, or from above in the Torre Latino observatory.
CHOOSE A MUSEUM
Whether it’s art, history or archeology, Mexico City is full of museums. I chose the National Museum of Anthropology and loved every bit of it. I enjoy learning about ancient civilizations and was able to read up on the Aztecs and the Mayans. Other museums include Museo Soumaya which houses about 70,000 pieces of artwork and is free of charge and the Frida Kahlo Museum located in the Coyoacán neighbourhood.
CLIMB THE PYRAMIDS OF TEOTIHUACAN
An hour away outside of the city are the magnificent pyramids of Teotihuacán. Go as early as possible (I went at 8:30AM) and walk around the archeological site. I was able to climb both the Pyramid of the Sun and Pyramid of the Moon with no other tourists around. It felt like a very mystical experience. While you’re there, dine at La Gruta, located inside a natural cave behind Pyramid of the Sun.
TAKE IN THE VIEW FROM CHAPULTEPEC CASTLE
Within Chapultepec Park, perched high above the trees, sits the only royal castle in North America, Chapultepec Castle. Take a short tram ride up or walk at a leisurely pace and enjoy the view. You can spend hours exploring this castle, the gardens, and the museums and take in the amazing views out over Mexico City from the terrace.
BASILICA OF OUR LADY GUADALUPE
This is a spiritual site where Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared to Juan Diego. There are a collection of churches here where you can still attend mass. You will witness many make the sacred pilgrimage here by walking on their knees. Even if not for religious reasons, it is a great place to explore, and I recommend that you wander behind the Old Basilica, and follow the steps up for a great view!
TIP – EAT THE STREET FOOD
The street food is Mexico City is amazing as well as cheap. I picked a street vendor with the longest line and ordered 5 Taco’s al Pastor (cooked over an open fire) for only 30 pesos! That’s a little over a dollar. Another popular place to try is El Moro Churreria, which is a yummy churro spot open 24 hours. Pictured below is a Diablito – a yummy drink made of mango and chile!
There is so much to do, see and eat in this beautiful city that 3 days is hardly enough. I am grateful to have experienced the culture and beauty of Mexico City in such a short amount of time, and I look forward to going back.
Do you have any Mexico City tips? Please share in the comments section below! Read Next > The Best Days Trips From Cancun, Mexico