A few weeks ago, I had a business trip in Mexico City. So did my husband. So what does any normal couple do? Go beforehand for a leisure getaway, of course! I had never traveled to Mexico City before and did no research and had no expectations. And it blew me away. So much so that both Rick and I agreed we could live there, that’s how much we loved it! For those of you who have never been before, I highly recommend it. It’s a perfect urban escape and a relatively short flight that lands you in what feels like Spain or just somewhere amazing miles and miles away. For me, it was only a little over 3 hours by plane and when we were there, I literally felt like I was in Europe the whole time. Just exchange cheese and bread for mole and tortillas.
First, did you know that Mexico City has a population of 22 million and about 9 million in the city property? Just to put it into perspective, NYC has a little over 8 million in all five boroughs. Needless to say, the city is HUMUNGOUS. But, I had 7 days there between work and personal and I feel like I was able to get a true taste of the culture and, um, tons of delicious food.
Second, the weather. Praise God for Mexico City weather. The city is about 7,000 feet above sea level which means this: average temperature in the 70’s all year round. Who knew?! Well, now you do and this gives you just another reason to travel to Mexico City!
And so, I bring to you my 5 things to do in Mexico City. There is so much more to do there but I chose my highlights to help simplify your future travel plans.
1. National Palace – Located in the city’s main square, El Zocalo, this is a must-see (if nothing else, the outside is stunning). And let me confess. I don’t love museums. And was reluctant (but Rick loves museums and he planned the day so I was along for the ride). We had a guided tour take us through the core of the palace which were the murals that Diego Rivera painted and were fascinating. The stories behind the murals were worth every single second. Even for this non-museum-lover.
2. Azul Historico – one of the best meals I had in Mexico City. Go for lunch, a long lunch. Lunch in Mexico City starts around 1:30 and ends around 4. We were here for about 2.5 hours and I loved every second of it. The ambiance was my favorite part by far. And the food was a close second. Get the tortilla soup. Oh my word. And it was here that I tried grasshoppers (a local delicatessen). They were actually really good, as noted by my smile in the picture below.
3. Bazar del Sabado – I love markets. Like LOVE LOVE markets. And this one did not disappoint. Beautiful local art, food, crafts and entertainment. Only open on Saturdays and a perfect start to the day. Get a coffee and pastry, walk around, bargain and buy and after all that work, sit and have a 3 hour lunch. I am not sure if there is a better way to spend a Saturday.
4. La Casa Azul ( otherwise known as the Frida Kahlo Museum) – the family home of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera turned museum in 1958. Now, this is my type of museum! I love exploring homes, new and old, so this was definitely a highlight for me. To see where Frida painted, their kitchen, where she slept, the beautiful grounds. I fell in love and would highly recommend!
5. San Angel Inn – another impeccable dining experience filled with incredible beauty and ambiance in a charming area. Mexican cuisine paired with a great locale and service made this a favorite for us. This restaurant is an old Carmelite monastery in the historic San Angel – please get tortilla soup to start and the cheese and beef enchiladas for your main course. I still dream of this meal.