Collected by Joe Manero
Mosqueta, Eje 1 Nte. S/N, Buenavista, 06350 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
A detour to the centrally located yet way-off-the-tourist-track neighborhood known as Buenavista leads to one of Mexico City’s most dazzling 21st-century landmarks, the Biblioteca Vasconcelos, a gorgeous public library. The...
Balderas 202, Colonia Centro, Centro, 06000 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Nineteenth-century Cuban independence leader José Martí lived a short but full life, creating a considerable body of writing and traveling extensively. He spent long enough periods of time abroad that he could have been considered an expat; he...
Av. Juárez, Centro Histórico de la Cdad. de México, Centro, 06050 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
The imposing, white-domed wedding cake now known as Palacio de Bellas Artes was originally planned as a national theater, and construction was begun in 1904. The Mexican Revolution, among other things, postponed its completion until 1934, which...
Calle Ernesto Pugibet, Colonia Centro, Centro, 06000 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
You may not know it, but as you peruse the stalls of vendors at Mercado San Juan, you just might be rubbing shoulders or vying for the plumpest, prettiest chayote with one of Mexico City's top chefs. San Juan is the market for serious home cooks...
Calle Morelos 62, Juárez, 06600 Cuauhtémoc, CDMX, Mexico
On the non-descript, busy corner of Bucareli and Morelos streets in Mexico City is a café with a famous history: Fidel Castro and Che Guevarra met here at Café La Habana several times, chain smoking and drinking strong coffee, to plan the Cuban...
Insurgentes Centro 117, San Rafael, 06470 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
It was one of my neighbors who pointed me towards this place. He told me that every once in a while his grandmother and his aunt used to make a special visit to get the best ice cream in the city. The chosen place was always La Especial de París....
Plaza de las Américas 1, Villa de Guadalupe, Villa Gustavo A. Madero, 07050 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Each December 12, thousands of pilgrims from all corners of the country converge upon the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City to honor the feast day of the Virgin of Guadalupe. Some arrive by car, others by bus, and a good many have...
Plaza de la Constitución S/N, Centro, Cuauhtémoc, 06066 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Though his reputation is now arguably overshadowed by that of his former wife, painter and muralist Diego Rivera—commissioned by Mexico’s postrevolutionary governments starting in the late 1920s to adorn several national monuments in...
Seminario 8, Centro Histórico, Cuauhtémoc, 06060 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
With the Spanish conquest of the Aztec empire, Iberian overlords set about imposing their customs on the subdued populace, eliminating traces of pre-Hispanic religions they deemed heretical by demolishing major temples and building churches and...
Plaza de la Constitución S/N, Centro, Cuauhtémoc, 06000 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Mexico City’s mammoth cathedral was built across three centuries (1573–1813)—starting soon after Cortés and his allies vanquished the Aztec Empire—using stones taken from a destroyed indigenous temple. Today’s...
Plaza de la Constitución, Centro Histórico de la Cdad. de México, Centro, 06000 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Its massive size, centrality to daily life in the capital, and easy accessibility (a Metro station opens up right onto the plaza) makes the Zócalo an ideal place for large-scale temporary exhibits. The government hosts occasional exhibits...
Av. 5 de Mayo 61, Centro Histórico de la Cdad. de México, Centro, 06000 Centro, CDMX, Mexico
The restaurant and bar, called El Balcon del Zocalo, on the roof top of the Holiday Inn located along the Zocalo, or central square, of Mexico City is worth the inflated prices in order to get a bird's eye view of Mexico's largest and most...
Av. 5 de Mayo 39, Centro Histórico, Cuauhtémoc, 06000 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
An art nouveau stained-glass sign welcomes you into the 140-year-old Dulcería de Celaya, a family-owned sweets shop near the Zócalo. Mexican treats such as aleluyas de pistache (dulce de leche sweets studded with pistachios) and buñuelos...
Paseo de la Reforma & Calzada Gandhi S/N, Chapultepec Polanco, Miguel Hidalgo, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Housed in a 1964 structure whose modern lines and central fountain greatly complement what's on view, this anthropology museum is a repository of the most important pre-Hispanic treasures modern Mexico has discovered. The works are...
Londres 247, Del Carmen, Coyoacán, 04100 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
The cobalt-blue-and-brick-red residence where now-legendary Mexican visual artist Frida Kahlo grew up—and at times lived with husband Diego Rivera—is one of the city’s most consistently packed attractions; buying tickets in...
Blvd. Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra 303, Granada, 11529 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
The Museo Soumaya, financed by Carlos Slim, the richest man in Mexico, has the ambitions of the Guggenheim Bilbao from the outside. It's a stunning building whose sweeping, soaring curves couldn't help but make it an instant landmark near Polanco,...
Alejandro Dumas 81, Polanco, Polanco IV Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
El Péndulo elevates the café-bookstore concept exceptionally well, inviting you to linger for hours over coffee and pastries in its large, two-level cafe (there are even tables on the second floor's balcony). Books in Spanish and...
Av. Pdte. Masaryk 390, Polanco, Polanco III Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Mexico City has no dearth of luxurious boutique hotels, but Las Alcobas is a special option. Designed by famed firm Yabu Pushelberg, the hotel is full of gorgeous details, from hand-stitched leather wall coverings to a spiral staircase that surges...
Av. Hidalgo 51, Guerrero, 06300 Cuauhtemoc, CDMX, Mexico
Much like traveling in Europe, it can seem, after a few days in Mexico City, that there are just too many churches to see. Cathedral fatigue sets in and your eyes glaze over at the thought of seeing one more gilt altar. If you walk by without...
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico C.U., Av de los Insurgentes Sur S/N, 04510 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
As with most structures and sites in Mexico City, the Estadio Olímpico, or Olympic Stadium, located on the grounds of the university (UNAM), has played an important role in several historic episodes. First is its role in mid-20th-century Mexican...
S/N, Balderas, Colonia Centro, Centro, 06040 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
La Ciudadela has been the go-to market for handcrafts for nearly 50 years, and it features crafts and handmade objects from all over Mexico. Expect to find everything from textiles (blankets, tablecloths, and hand-embroidered clothing) to...
Rosario 156, Centro, Merced Balbuena, 15100 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Mercado de la Merced, Mexico City’s largest traditional food market, is full of little neighborhoods. Wander the districts devoted to everything from nopales—sometimes stacked five feet high—to pyramids of limes and columns of...
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