The Ultimate Guide to Cartagena’s Colonial District: The Walled City vs. Getsemaní

Beautiful sunset over Cartagena, Colombia
Beautiful sunset over Cartagena, Colombia. Photo by: Starcevic.

Not sure where to stay in Cartagena? If you’re looking to immerse yourself in culture, a stay in Cartagena’s colonial Centro area is in order. But which is better, the Walled City or Getsemaní? Stick with us as we take a deep dive into Cartagena’s most historic neighborhoods, from accommodation to nightlife, and safety.

Cartagena is undeniably the jewel of Colombia’s Caribbean coast. Positioned on the Caribbean Sea, this historic port town attracts thousands of visitors every year due to its unique architecture and charm. In Cartagena, you can see the stunning juxtaposition of new and old. It is a beautiful sight to see the Miami-like skyline of Bocagrande whilst standing on the centuries-old city wall. But the true appeal to most visitors is the timeless beauty of the colonial neighborhoods of Centro and San Diego within the Walled City, and Getsemaní, just outside of it. These neighborhoods are iconic and, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, remain as a window to a past that has long gone by. 

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Cartagena’s Walled City: A Charming and Romantic Escape

Cartagena Colombia
Photo: Shutterstock

The historic center of Cartagena is surrounded by 11 kilometers of defensive walls. Built in 1586 to protect Cartagena from invading pirates, they now form a central part of the identity of the city. Nowadays, with no threat from conquistadors, pirates, or invasions, Cartagena welcomes thousands of visitors each year to stroll its picturesque streets. You are sure to be charmed by its cobbled streets and quaint, colorful buildings with flowering bougainvillea all year round. Cartagena has been named one of the most romantic cities in the world. Despite its historic facade, Cartagena is full of modern restaurants, trendy bars, and boutique designer shops. This makes it the perfect place to wander around for the afternoon, and well into the evening.

What is the Nightlife like in the Walled City?

Nightlife in Alquimico, one of Cartagena's best bars.
Nightlife in Alquimico, one of Cartagena’s best bars.

The nightlife in Cartagena’s walled city is unparalleled. As the sleepy heat of the day wears off, the city comes alive at night. Stroll through quaint plazas where artisans sell their wares, such as San Diego Square, or grab an arepa de huevo (Cartagena’s signature fried treat – the egg arepa) in Fernandez de Madrid Square.

The walled city is always buzzing with people until the small hours of the morning. You can find some of the best and most stylish bars and clubs in Cartagena inside the old town. Check out our guide to the best bars and clubs in Cartagena – all of which are located within the walled city. Some of our favorites include Alquimico for the best craft cocktails in town, and La Movida for a stylish nightclub with excellent music. The old town of Cartagena is super walkable and bar hopping is not only easy but recommended.

Where can I stay in the Walled City?

Luxury Villa in Cartagena Colombia
Luxury Villa in Cartagena, Colombia.

The old town of Cartagena probably has one of the highest ratios of hotels and Airbnbs per square meter than anywhere else. It is positively bursting with incredible locations to stay. Despite the fact that there are hundreds of hotels and hostels inside the walled city of Cartagena, we will always prefer to choose a villa over a hotel.

A villa rental is superior because you and your group will have the whole vacation rental to yourselves. The appeal of privacy, plus your own private garden, balcony, and swimming pool is just too much to pass on. Plus, the colonial architecture of the private villas in the walled city is second to none. You can even hire a private chef to cook up a storm for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, while you kick back on your private rooftop terrace. Sounds too good to be true? Check out our villas and see for yourself.

If you do fancy a hotel stay, there are some world-renowned options within the old city, such as the Charleston Santa Teresa or the Sofitel Santa Clara. The Santa Clara is a converted convent that looks onto the ocean and is steeped in history. It is even said to be the inspiration for Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s book “Of Love and Other Demons”.

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How safe is the Walled City of Cartagena?

If you’re within the walled city, you’re in one of the safest areas of Cartagena. The main streets are busy at all hours and are well-lit. As with any major city, it’s always good to have your wits about you. Pick-pocketing can easily happen, especially in large crowds. Don’t carry large amounts of cash on you, and make sure you take out some Colombian pesos rather than dollars if you want to buy any souvenirs in the street.

Speaking of money, make sure you always negotiate a price before purchasing a service. For example, getting in a yellow cab, getting a massage on the beach, or renting the horse and carts you will see around town. It’s always better to agree on the price beforehand to avoid getting scammed. And that photo with the beautiful Palenquera lady with the fruit basket on her head? It’s not for free. And finally, be careful when using dating apps. Make sure to always meet in a public place and keep your friends informed of your whereabouts.

Getsemaní: The Walled City’s Bohemian younger sister

Cartagena colombia Gesemani neighborhood
Beautiful street in Getsemaní neighborhood. Photo by: Priscilla Burcher

Getsemaní (pronounced het-sem-a-KNEE) was, historically, a slum where the slaves would live during colonial times. Until around 10 years ago, it was preceded by its reputation for being seedy and dangerous. Today, however, it is a totally different neighborhood. Getsemaní is a diamond in the rough; it is charming, without being perfectly polished like many parts of Centro. Enjoy its vibrant street art, much of which celebrates the essence of what it is to be proudly Afro-Colombian. The locals of Getsemaní have banded together to make the most of living right in the heart of one of Cartagena’s most touristic districts. Every family home has become a business; whether they are selling beers through their window, colorful canvases with local art, or cheap cocktails. Getsemaní was even named by Forbes magazine back in 2018 as one of the “coolest neighborhoods in the world”.

What is the Nightlife like in Getsemaní?

Getsemani Cartagena Colombia
Café Havana in Getsemaní, Cartagena, Colombia.

The nightlife experience in Getsemaní is very different from the experience in the walled city. It is a lot more chaotic and busy as there is a high volume of people in a smaller space. It is also a lot more relaxed in terms of the general atmosphere. The beating heart of Getsemani is Plaza de la Trinidad, where you will find many locals and tourists alike. Many people gather in this square during the evenings to chat, drink, and watch the street performers. Keep an eye out, and you might see Michael Jackson, or even Shakiro (Cartagena’s answer to Shakira which needs to be seen to be believed). Or if you fancy a $2 cocktail, head down to Callejon Ancho, where you will find a bunch of makeshift bars, blaring music, and the best vibes to get your weekend started.

There are also some great bars, restaurants, and clubs in Getsemaní. We like Seven Times, a cabaret-style club with different ambiances. Head to the famous Cafe Havana to dance salsa into the small hours of the night, or to Calle Dragones for some creative cocktails. We also can’t forget about dinner at Celele, a contender in the list of Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants (2022).

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Where can I stay in Getsemaní?

Casa Santa Ana Cartagena
Luxury Villa in Cartagena, Colombia

Much like the walled city, Getsemaní also has its fair share of Colonial villas. Much like the villas in the old city, these stunning, centuries-old houses have private pools, terraces, and all the modern amenities. After the hustle and bustle of the busy streets of Getsemaní, entering your private villa feels like the perfect escape. Relax, party, or host in total privacy. Getsemaní has a much higher proportion of backpacker hostels compared to the Old City. Many of these are located on its main street, Calle Media Luna. There are also some more upper-scale hotels, such as Casa Lola, which stays true to the rugged yet charming vibe of Getsemaní.

How safe is Getsemaní?

Despite being a little rougher around the edges compared to the walled city, Getsemaní is also pretty safe. In recent years, safety has improved a lot in this area, as it has gotten more gentrified and popular. Still, it’s important to stick to well-populated areas such as the main square and the streets where the main bars and restaurants are. Don’t engage in conversation with homeless people or people selling things. All our previous recommendations for the walled city of Cartagena also apply here; no des papaya (don’t give papaya) as they say in Cartagena, and you’ll be fine! This local saying basically translates to don’t flash what you’re not willing to lose. If you stick with your group and go to reputable places, you have nothing to worry about. You’re sure to have the best time on your trip to Cartagena!

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Unmissable Sites Near Mexico City: Must-Visit Guide

Oaxaca. Mexico.

If history and archaeology are your passions, and learning about cultures different from your own is what gets you out of bed in the morning, Mexico City has a great deal to offer regarding that. You’ll find many fascinating options in downtown Mexico City alone. However, if your passion also includes the heart of an explorer, you’ll be thrilled to discover that more sites near Mexico City are worth seeing. Sites near Mexico City include the Teotihuacán Pyramids, San Miguel de Allende, and Oaxaca. Every site near Mexico City has something to offer. From ancient ruins in Teotihuacán Pyramids to culinary wonders in Oaxaca, you’ll find these and more near Mexico City.

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Ruins Near Mexico City: Teotihuacán Pyramids

Teotihuacán Pyramids.
Avenue of Dead and Sun Pyramid in Teotihuacán.

Discover the ancient wonders just a stone’s throw away from the bustling metropolis of Mexico City at the iconic Teotihuacán Pyramids. As a testament to the rich history of Mesoamerican civilizations, these ruins offer a captivating journey into the past. Teotihuacán, meaning “the place where the gods were created,” stands as one of the most significant archaeological sites in the region. This easily accessible site near Mexico City, and UNESCO World Heritage place allows visitors to step back in time and explore the remnants of a once-thriving pre-Columbian city.

Nestled within the Valley of Mexico, Teotihuacán’s grandeur is exemplified by the Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Moon, both towering structures that beckon travelers seeking a cultural and historical escape. The site provides a unique opportunity to marvel at the advanced urban planning and architectural prowess of the ancient Teotihuacanos. Exploring these ruins near Mexico City is not just a journey into the past; it’s an immersive experience that unveils the mysteries of a civilization that thrived over two millennia ago. For those eager to unearth the secrets of Mesoamerican history, Teotihuacán stands as an unmissable destination, right on the doorstep of Mexico’s vibrant capital.

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San Miguel de Allende

San Miguel de Allende near Mexico City

If you’re interested in taking a day trip, Mexico City to San Miguel de Allende is about a four-hour drive. There are tons of things to do there such as visiting museums, visiting boutiques where you can find handmade items, enjoying live music, good food, wine tastings, and more. There are a couple of interesting stops between Mexico City and San Miguel de Allende that you may want to consider if you want to take a break from driving and get out to stretch your legs.

Museo Nacional de Virre is about an hour away from Mexico City. It’s filled with fine art, inlaid wood pictures, religious statues, paintings, and more. This is something of an extension of the beautiful artistic works you’d see in Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral.

Another option that’s about an hour away from Mexico City is Xochitla Ecological Park. Though the park is privately owned, it’s open to the public. It offers a beautiful and peaceful 2.3-mile loop that’s typically considered a moderately challenging hike on a dirt trail. The focus of this park is to enhance environmental conscience and to offer a refuge to wildlife.

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Guanajuato

Guanajuato

Another option for a day trip is Mexico City to Guanajuato, which is about a five-hour drive. Guanajuato was quite a wealthy location in its early days. It was very rich in silver and gold deposits. Back in the 16th century, it was considered a silver-mining center. Then it went into an extended time of decline because of a revolt in 1810. It didn’t start to make a comeback until about the middle of the 20th century.  If you’re into architecture, you’ll get to enjoy colonial-style buildings and brightly colored homes as you explore along cobblestone streets. Guanajuato’s most famous attraction is the Mummy Museum. There’s also an interesting theater, which is a unique blend of ancient Roman architecture on the outside, and oriental styling on the inside.

It’s interesting to note that a drive from San Miguel de Allende to Guanajuato would be about one-and-a-half hours. So it would be possible to visit Guanajuato after spending time in San Miguel de Allende.      

If you were to choose to travel from Mexico City to San Miguel de Allende to Guanajuato, you could also pick up Leon, which is about one-and-a-half hours from Guanajuato. Leon is a bustling city and is the fifth largest city in Mexico. It’s a great place to get quality leather goods and is accessible from several airports. 

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Oaxaca

Oaxaca,,Mexico,,Scenic,Old,City,Streets,And,Colorful,Colonial,Buildings

If you’re a road warrior, Mexico City to Oaxaca is just over a six-hour drive. So this might make a good weekend adventure because of the travel time involved. As much as Oaxaca has to offer, planning for more than just a weekend visit may be necessary.

Oaxaca is a place of variety, activity, beauty, history, and fine culinary delights. One of the most fascinating places to visit in Oaxaca is the UNESCO site in Monte Alabán. Three different people groups lived in the area for 1500 years, so there is a large number of amazing ruins including ancient pyramids, fortresses, an observatory, and more.

Oaxaca is full of open-air markets. The most well-known is the Tlacolula Market. Besides fresh meat and vibrant produce, there’s also the opportunity to check out local, handmade items such as pottery and wooden collectibles.

A beautiful, historical building in the downtown area of Oaxaca is the Oaxaca Cathedral. It’s been around since the 1500s but had to undergo significant repairs after it was damaged in an 

earthquake in 1714. Oaxaca Cathedral is a beautiful site to visit, especially at night when it’s lit up.

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Beyond Mexico City Surroundings

While Mexico City has a great deal of beauty, history, and fun places to explore, each nearby city has its own story to unfold about Mexico’s past, present, and dreams for the future. The information shared here is only a fraction of the fascinating travel experiences awaiting those who choose to step into the journey of unmissable sites near Mexico City.

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Cultural Landmarks You Must See in Mexico City

mexico city cultural landmarks

Mexico City is the very heart of Mexico and is Mexico’s largest city. Mexico City is also the biggest city on the continent of North America. Fascinating history, exquisite art, delicious food, breathtaking architecture, and a variety of cultural landmarks. All of these can be found throughout Mexico City.

The bustling city boasts of the variety it offers to tourists who enjoy being immersed in a vibrant culture that embraces life to the fullest. Some of Mexico City’s most notable cultural landmarks include Templo Mayor, the National Palace, and Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral. 

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Mexico City Landmarks

mexico city altitude
Zocalo Constitution Square in Mexico City, landmark Metropolitan Cathedral, and National Palace.

These cultural landmarks can be explored throughout a weekend, and offer some great photo ops. There’s a plethora of dining options available and some nice variety. Besides Mexican food, there is also Spanish, French, Mediterranean, Asian and more. You’ll even be able to squeeze in learning a high-level view of Mexico’s history.

The Aztecs gave Mexico City its foundation way back in the 13th century, although it was known as Tenochtitlan at the time. They were responsible for developing a fairly advanced civilization with an organized social, political, and religious culture. Then the Spanish conquest and the French invasion brought about changes and new influences. 

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Templo Mayor Mexico City

Ruins of the Museo Templo Mayor
Ruins of the Museo Templo Mayor. Photo by: Günther Bayerl.

When the Aztecs originally constructed the Templo Mayor (Main Temple), it was the hub of their civilization’s activities, including special ceremonies and rituals. So they made it the center of their city. It was about 100 feet high and overlooked the entire city with massive pyramids on each side of an enormous platform. The Aztecs were religious and worshiped many gods. Temple Mayor was dedicated to Huitzilopochtli, the god of war and the sun, and also Tlaloc, the god of the rain.

When a new Aztec ruler took the throne, he would typically add enhancements to the Templo Mayor to mark his reign in the empire and to honor the gods and the Aztec empire. The Templo Mayor went through several major phases of construction. The temple has also been home to some of the most incredible works of art in history, as well as elaborate architectural embellishments.

When Hernán Cortés and his Spanish conquistadors invaded the area, their group only consisted of 400 soldiers. However, the Aztec empire had become unstable even before the invasion, and even though Cortés was outnumbered, his conquistadors were armed with better weapons.

After the Spanish overcame the Aztec empire, the Templo Mayor was nearly destroyed and erased from history for many centuries. Then its ruins were accidentally rediscovered toward the end of the 1970s because of some area electrical upgrades, and it was decided that an archeological dig should take place. Today, tourists can walk along gated paths and see the ruins, and pay a fee to see the many artifacts in the museum located behind Templo Mayor.

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National Palace Mexico City

National Palace Palacio Nacional Zocalo Plaza de la Constitucion Mexico City
Photo by: Robert Harding.

The National Palace is an impressive structure that is located at the center of the city’s main square (Zócalo). Today, the National Palace is being used as the location of various government offices and the residence of Mexico’s president. Besides it has an amazing history. Some of the National Palace’s building materials are as old as Montezuma, who was one of the last emperors of the Aztec empire. Because of the building’s history, it’s considered to be one of the most symbolic representations of Mexico.

The National Palace is also home to an exquisite mural that tells the story of Mexico’s history and is entitled, The History of Mexico. Mexican artist Diego Rivera is the artist who painted the mural, which fills the three enormous walls alongside the National Palace’s main stairway. Rivera’s challenge was to choose the key events of Mexico’s history and bring them to life in the present and for future generations with his brilliant artistic ability. His masterpiece spans from the time of the Aztec empire through the Spanish conquest, and the revolution into the industrial years. Rivera also painted other works that can be viewed in Mexico City’s Centro Histórico.

Admission is free, but since it’s a government building in use today, you will need to be prepared to show your identification. Any bags you have with you will go through a security check.

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Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral

Metropolitan Cathedral Mexico City
Photo by: Aidan McRae

Approximately 50 years after Hernán Cortés led his Spanish conquistadors into victory over the Aztecs, construction started on the Metropolitan Cathedral. It took 250 years to build this massive and impressive religious structure. The time involved in its construction meant that several types of architecture were woven in by all who took part. The blend of styles includes Renaissance, Baroque, and Neoclassical.

The Metropolitan Cathedral was built on top of the Templo Mayor upon the orders of the conquistadors as a symbol of their victory over the Aztecs. Many of the remains of the Templo Mayor were incorporated into the Metropolitan Cathedral as additional symbolism of the outcome of the Spanish conquest. The Metropolitan Cathedral has had issues with sinking, and so far, has sunk about 32 feet (10 meters), so a major stabilization project took place during the 1990s and was completed in 2000.

Today, the Metropolitan Cathedral is the home of many gorgeous paintings of religious figures, statues, and various artifacts. In addition, it is the home of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Mexico. The building is often open for self-guided tours when religious services are not taking place. It will be best to check which days and times in advance of your visit.

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Only a Taste of All that Mexico City Offers

These amazing landmarks barely scratch the surface of all the amazing sights and history you can experience in Mexico City. Including these cultural landmarks in your Mexico City itinerary will give you a taste of the beauty and the fun adventures the country has to offer, a desire for a return visit, and plenty of photos and bragging rights to share with friends and family when you get home.

Craving a taste of Mexico? Let us be your flavor guide! We’re not just planners; we’re memory architects. Dive into your dream getaway with us, where every detail is a stroke of brilliance.

Mexico City Altitude Recommendations

mexico city altitude

Mexico City is one of the most popular destinations for tourists, but one thing you need to be aware of if you’re planning a trip to Mexico City is the difference in altitude. Prevent altitude sickness, so you can enjoy your trip to Mexico City stress-free!

No matter if you’re planning on spending your time here wandering around art museums, or indulging in delicious Mexican cuisine, it’s best to be aware of some of the best altitude recommendations for Mexico City.

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What is the Altitude in Mexico City?

mexico city altitude
Zocalo Constitution Square in Mexico City, landmark Metropolitan Cathedral, and National Palace.

The altitude in Mexico City is something every visitor needs to be aware of. Mexico City’s elevation in feet is 7,349, or 2, 240 meters above sea level.

Due to Mexico City’s height, visitors can often experience altitude sickness, which can really take away from their enjoyment of the trip. Let’s face it, everyone imagines their vacation to Mexico City to be spent exploring art galleries, dining on delectable Mexican cuisine, and sipping on fruity cocktails – not feeling sick, dizzy, and dealing with headaches every day!

With Mexico City insights in mind, let’s craft a tailor-made itinerary for your unique experience.

Can You Get Altitude Sickness in Mexico City?

mexico city altitude
Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Due to the elevation of Mexico City, altitude sickness is a common problem among visitors who are not prepared to adjust to this new altitude. It is a common problem as Mexico City has 5% lower oxygen levels than at sea level. This makes it important to understand the common symptoms of altitude sickness and how to prevent it before you travel.

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What is Altitude Sickness?

mexico city panoramic
Museo Nacional in Downtown Mexico City

In short, altitude sickness is a variety of symptoms people experience when they ascend to a much higher altitude too rapidly.

Not allowing the human body to adjust to the lower oxygen levels at the higher altitude, and the changes in air pressure can create a host of unwanted symptoms which can interfere with the enjoyment of your vacation.

It’s important to be aware that the symptoms of altitude sickness, in some circumstances, can become life-threatening. Taking action to prevent it, and knowing the symptoms before you travel is very important.

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Symptoms of Altitude Sickness in Mexico City

mexico city cathedral in zocalo
Cathedral in the Zocalo of Mexico City, under cloudy skies.

Now that you know what Altitude sickness is, and what causes it, it’s important to be able to recognize the symptoms, should you start to experience any when you arrive in Mexico City.

Symptoms of altitude sickness include:

  • A loss of appetite
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Difficulty sleeping / insomnia
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Exhaustion / feeling tired / feeling weak
  • Swelling of the face, hands, or feet
  • Shortness of breath
  • Irritability

If your symptoms persist let us know and we’ll contact a healthcare professional for medical advice. If your symptoms begin to worsen, we’ll seek immediate medical attention for you and your group. We got you covered!

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How to Prevent Altitude Sickness in Mexico City

Traveling to Mexico City should still be fun and exciting, and you can enjoy your trip worry-free if you prepare well to prevent altitude sickness. There are many ways in which you can prepare for the altitude changes in Mexico City to avoid getting sick.

Supplements

There are several supplements on the market that have been found effective in treating and preventing altitude sickness.

Before purchasing any supplements it is important to do thorough research on the product and consult with your healthcare professional.

It is important to note that supplements should not be relied upon to prevent/treat altitude sickness, and these should be used alongside other natural ways to prevent altitude sickness.

Avoid Strenuous Activity

This can be a difficult one for those who are looking for an active vacation, but it is important to lower your activity level, and not engage in any strenuous activity during the acclimatization period, or until your body has fully adjusted.

Strenuous activity (even hitting the hotel gym!) can lead to more serious Mexico City altitude sickness, and it is important to wait until at least two days of no symptoms before you can engage in physical activity or exercise.

Acclimate Slowly

Acclimating slowly is one of the best ways of preventing symptoms of altitude sickness.

If you’re planning on visiting nearby mountains, you should be sure to spend several days in Mexico City Center before traveling any higher. This is especially important if you’re flying in.

If possible, it’s a good idea to plan a road trip to Mexico City, so that you can spend a few days adjusting slowly to the higher elevation and giving your body time to adjust.

Avoid Alcohol, Tobacco, and Caffeine

Although many people want to make the most of their time in Mexico City at night, it’s important to limit your alcohol intake, as well as tobacco and caffeine, especially for the first few days until you have adjusted to the elevation.

Not only can these cause oxidative stress, and be dehydrating (which can make it more difficult for your body to adjust to the new altitude, and increase your risk for altitude sickness), but the symptoms of a hangover due to excessive alcohol consumption can be incredibly similar to altitude sickness.

Get Plenty of Rest

It is important to get plenty of rest both before and during your trip. Sleep is an important part of helping the human body recover, so no matter how badly you want to get out and explore, it’s important to get around 7-8 hours of sleep every night.

Good sleep will help increase blood flow, and prevent the development of altitude sickness.

Hydrate Well

Dehydration is one of the most common things that can cause altitude sickness symptoms to develop or worsen, so it is vital to drink plenty of water during your trip to Mexico City. 

Due to sweating in the warm weather of Mexico City, and the increase in respiration caused by the drastic increase in altitude, you will lose a lot of fluids. Therefore, it is important to ensure proper hydration and drink lots of water for the duration of your getaway.

If you need any more assistance with planning and preparing for your trip to Mexico City, one of our specialists can help you plan your dream getaway.

Downtown Mexico City: Discover the Historic Center of Mexico City

Historic center Mexico City
Street scene in the historic center of Mexico City

Mexico City Downtown, also known as the Historic Center of Mexico City,  (or locally as Centro Historic Mexico City), is a gorgeous historic district, brimming with classic architecture, delicious traditional Mexican cuisine, and even UNESCO world heritage sites.

Many consider this to be one of the best neighborhoods in Mexico City, not only due to its rich heritage but also due to the amount of amazing things to see and do here.

If you’re planning a trip to Mexico City, and are looking for the perfect spot to soak up some history and culture, then look no further than Downtown Mexico City.

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Visit the Zócalo

Plaza de la Constitucion in Mexico City
Historical landmark National Palace building at Plaza de la Constitucion in Mexico City. Photo by: R.M. Nunes

The Zócalo in Mexico City is one of the country’s most famous UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The Zócalo is one of the major reasons why the area is hailed as Mexico City’s historic center.

This plaza has stood as the main square of downtown Mexico City since Aztec times. Today is still one of the most popular areas for locals and tourists. Previously known as the Plaza de la Constitución, it features a huge flagpole flying the Mexican flag, and many great attractions. Zócalo includes artists selling handmade goods and souvenirs, street food vendors, and folk dancers.

With Mexico City insights in mind, let’s craft a tailor-made itinerary for your unique experience.

Visit Templo Mayor

Templo Mayor in the historic center of Mexico City
Templo Mayor in the historic center of Mexico City

Templo Mayor (Main Aztec Temple) is a famous temple which, as the name suggests, used to serve as the main location for the entire Aztec empire.

After the Spanish conquest, the temple was buried and the Zocalo was built on top. Efforts to excavate the temple took place between the 19th century and the 1980s. Today guests can walk through the remnants of the temple to view its spectacular history.

There is also an onsite museum that houses some of the 7,000 items and artifacts recovered from the temple. Guests can visit Tuesday to Sunday between 9:00 and 17:00, for a small entry fee of 80 pesos ($4 USD).

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Take a Trip to one of Mexico City’s Best Museums

Museo Nacional in Downtown Mexico City
Museo Nacional in Downtown Mexico City

Mexico City is home to around 150 museums, with some of the best being located in Centro Historico. No matter what your interests are, you’ll find a museum here that’s more than worth the visit!

Some of these include:

  • MUNAL National Art Museum: for those who are interested in traditional artworks.
  • Museum of Popular Art: for those interested in contemporary artworks.
  • Museum of Tolerance and Memory: an incredibly potent museum about discrimination, genocide, and human rights.
  • Diego Rivera Mural Museum: a museum home to just one painting. The mural ‘Sueño de una tarde dominical en la Alameda Central’ is created by Diego Rivera (Frida Kahlo’s husband). Frida Kahlo is known for many as Mexico’s most important historical figure across 400 years.

If you have time, all of these museums are well worth the visit, especially if you’re interested in Mexico’s history or art scenes. The range in price goes between 35 pesos ($3 USD) and 95 pesos ($5 USD), making it easy and cheap to access great culture and heritage during a trip to the Historic Centre of Mexico City.

Got questions about exploring Mexico City? Drop us a message – we’re here to help you create an unforgettable Mexico City experience.

See Mariachi Bands at Plaza Garibaldi

Plaza Garibaldi in Mexico City
Plaza Garibaldi in Mexico City

If you’re looking to enjoy some authentic mariachi music in Mexico City, Plaza Garibaldi is a place where you can enjoy it day and night! 

So if you want to stop to admire the showmanship of the mariachi bands, or if you want to get involved in an impromptu dance party, Plaza Garibaldi is the place to be. Just to be on the safe side though, you’ll want to take an Uber back to the hotel if you’re visiting here after dark.

Now that you’re familiar with Mexico City, let’s design a custom itinerary for your exploration.

What to Eat in Downtown Mexico City

Mexico City Street Food

If you’re spending a day in Downtown Mexico City and are looking to indulge in some delicious and authentic food, then there are plenty of options for you to try! One of the best foods you’ll find in the historic downtown area is Tacos. Tacos Al Pastor, Tacos Suaderos, Tacos de Canasta, and Fish Tacos are all on the menu! There are options to sit down to eat them in restaurants, or to grab them to go and eat them standing street-side, just like the locals!

There’s also a branch of Churrería el Moro, home to the best Churros in Mexico City. Be sure to save room for a sweet and delicious snack!

Mexico City has one of the best dining scenes in the world. If you want to explore more restaurant options in Mexico City check out our guide.

Other Places to Visit in Downtown Mexico City

Whilst we have included in this guide some of the top things to see and do if you’re visiting the area for a day trip, there’s plenty more to experience here if you plan on staying in Mexico City’s Historic Center for a while longer including:

  • Torre Latinoamericana Tower (Latin American Tower): Head up to the mirador (viewing platform) on any clear day to enjoy sweeping views of the city below and all of its stunning historic buildings in a range of architectural styles.
  • Palacio Bellas Artes (Palace of Fine Arts): Another great spot for art lovers, the famous golden-domed, beautiful building boasts stunning architecture, an art-deco interior, and the Museo Palacio de Bellas Artes, where guests can view rotating art exhibits from some of the world’s most famous classical artists.
  • Barrio Chino (Mexico City Chinatown): Mexico City’s Chinatown isn’t very big, but it’s a great spot to stroll through and take some travel snaps of the iconic entryways.
  • Parque Alameda Central Park: A great place to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the surrounding area, Parque Alameda Central Park is a great spot for enjoying some delicious tacos or churros and watching the gentle fountains.
  • Palacio Nacional & Diego Rivera Murals: If you’re a fan of artwork, you can check out more of Diego Rivera’s work on the walls of Palacio Nacional, home to Mexico’s Federal Treasury and National Archives.
  • The Metropolitan Cathedral of Mexico City: A great spot to visit for architecture and culture alike, it is amongst the ten largest churches in all of the Americas.

Whether you’re a history fanatic or a lover of the arts, there’s plenty to see and do in the heart of Mexico City’s Historic Centre. Get ready to indulge in great tacos, dance to traditional mariachi music, and see some of the world’s most beautiful artworks all in one place – Downtown Mexico City!

Having an idea of what Mexico City offers, let’s work on a customized itinerary to maximize your experience. Contact our support team today for a personalized adventure in Mexico City!

Best Neighborhoods in Mexico City

Mexico City best neighborhoods
Photo by: Alfredo Estrella

Are you struggling to find your ideal neighborhood in Mexico City? Then you are in the right place!

Mexico City is nestled beneath the shadows of ancient pyramids and modern skyscrapers. It is a captivating tapestry of history, culture, and pulsating urban life. As you prepare to immerse yourself in this dynamic metropolis, the question of where to stay becomes a delightful journey in itself. From the refined elegance of Polanco to the bohemian charm of Roma Norte, each neighborhood has its unique charm and character. Explore with us the best neighborhoods in Mexico City.

With that in mind, we have reviewed a list of the three best neighborhoods in Mexico City to help you choose an ideal place to stay.

Best areas to stay in Mexico City

Here are some of the best areas to stay in Mexico City, each with its unique characteristics:

Polanco Mexico City: The Pinnacle of Elegance and Luxury

Photo by: Frank Nowikowski

Polanco is renowned for its upscale ambiance, cultural richness, and modern amenities. It allows you to experience a lifestyle where luxury seamlessly intertwines with the city’s vibrant spirit. Here are some reasons and allures that make Polanco the best place to stay in Mexico City:

  • Upscale Atmosphere: Polanco is known for its upscale and luxurious atmosphere. The neighborhood is home to high-end shopping districts, exclusive boutiques, and designer stores. All these attract a more affluent demographic.
  • Cultural Attractions: Polanco often hosts cultural events and exhibitions. You can visit their museums, such as Museo Soumaya and Museo Jumex.
  • Business Hub: The neighborhood serves as a significant business and financial hub. For instance, it hosts corporate offices, embassies, and upscale hotels. This makes it convenient for professionals working in the area.
  • Green Spaces: Polanco features well-maintained parks and green spaces. This provides a pleasant environment for residents and visitors. For example, Parque Lincoln is a popular park. You can relax and enjoy outdoor activities there.
  • Proximity to Chapultepec Park: Polanco is located near Chapultepec Park, one of the world’s largest urban parks. Residents easily access the park’s recreational areas, museums, and cultural attractions.
  • Dining and Culinary Scene: Polanco’s dining and culinary scene boasts numerous gourmet restaurants. They offer a wide range of international and Mexican cuisine. Therefore, if you are a food enthusiast seeking fine dining experiences, Polanco is a perfect neighborhood.

Condesa Mexico City: Bohemian Jewel of Mexico City

Condesa Neighborhood Mexico City
Photo by: Robert France

Condesa effortlessly blends historic elegance with a contemporary vibe. This creates a dynamic atmosphere. It also gives you a lifestyle steeped in creativity and cultural richness. 

Here are some reasons why Condesa is often highly regarded:

  • Architectural charm: Condesa is known for its beautiful and well-preserved architecture. You will love the tree-lined streets and the mix of Art Deco and colonial-style buildings.
  • Green spaces: Parque México and Parque España are two large parks located in Condesa. They will give you ample green space for recreational activities. You can also use them for picnics and relaxation.
  • Cultural scene: Condesa has a vibrant cultural scene. It includes numerous art galleries, theaters, and cultural spaces. It often hosts events such as art exhibitions, film festivals, and live performances.
  • Walkability: Condesa is a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood. It features walkable streets, making it easy for you to explore the area on foot. This will give you a more relaxed and community-oriented atmosphere.
  • Nightlife: Condesa is known for its vibrant nightlife. There are plenty of bars and clubs catering to different preferences. If you are seeking vibrant nightlife, Condensa is the perfect place to stay in Mexico City.

Roma Norte Mexico City: Cultural and Historic Oasis Of Mexico City

Roma Norte Mexico City
Roma Norte neighborhood in Mexico City. Photo by: Alejandro Cegarra

Nestled within the vibrant expanse of Mexico City, Roma Norte emerges as a cultural oasis. It is a favorite of both locals and expats. It has earned its stripes as one of the city’s best neighborhoods for the following reasons:

  • Cultural vibrancy: Roma Norte is a perfect neighborhood for vibrant cultural scenes. It has numerous art galleries, cultural centers, and theaters.
  • Architectural charm: Roma Norte has a mix of historic buildings and contemporary design. The tree-lined streets, charming plazas, and well-preserved structures add to the neighborhood’s appeal.
  • Diverse dining options: The neighborhood is renowned for its diverse and trendy dining scene. There are many dining options. Roma Norte offers a wide range of culinary experiences. You can find street food stalls and upscale restaurants there. The area is trendy for its international cuisine and fusion restaurants,
  • Green spaces: Roma Norte has several smaller parks and green spaces. You can relax and enjoy outdoor activities there. The only downside is that the parks are not as large as those in Condesa, 
  • Boutique shopping: Roma Norte is home to boutique shops, independent stores, and unique markets. This will give you a variety of shopping experiences. Moreover, the availability of unique and locally crafted goods adds to the charm of the area.
  • Accessibility: Roma Norte is centrally located. This allows you to easily and conveniently access other parts of Mexico City. The neighborhood is well connected by public transportation, including the metro and bus systems.

Now that you have an idea of where to stay in Mexico City, let us tailor-make a Mexico City itinerary for your stay in this city.

Factors to consider when choosing the best places to stay in Mexico City

Parque Mexico Roma Norte Condesa
Parque Mexico (Mexico Park) in the Condesa and Roma neighborhoods of Mexico City

Consider the following factors when screening for the best neighborhood in Mexico City:

Budget

You should determine your budget for housing and living expenses. Neighborhoods, such as Polanco are luxurious, and the cost of staying there may be higher. Other areas like some parts of Condesa and Roma can offer a more diverse range of housing costs.

Lifestyle and Interests

Consider your lifestyle and the amenities you value. If you enjoy cultural events, art, and vibrant nightlife, places like Condesa and Roma might be a good fit. If you prefer upscale ambiance, modernity, and luxury, areas like Polanco could be appealing.

Safety

Research the safety of neighborhoods. No area is crime-free. However, some neighborhoods are known for being safer than others. Therefore, you should consult with residents or online resources for up-to-date safety information.

Community atmosphere

Consider the community atmosphere of the neighborhood. Some areas have a strong sense of community with local events and markets. Other neighborhoods in Mexico City May be more cosmopolitan and diverse.

Future-development plans

Investigate any planned developments or changes in the neighborhood. For example, some areas may be undergoing urban development or revitalization. These could impact the overall atmosphere and property values.

Personal-preferences

Ultimately, consider your personal preferences and priorities. Make a list of what matters most to you in a neighborhood and use it as a guide in your search.

Once you have chosen an ideal place to stay in Mexico City, our team of experts is here to help you have an unforgettable experience.

Finale: Unveiling the Best Neighborhoods in Mexico City

Wherever you choose in Mexico City, your stay will not just be an accommodation choice. It will be an integral part of the adventure. Whether you are looking for the upscale elegance of Polanco, the bohemian vibes of Roma Norte, or the historic charm of Condesa, truly something for everybody in Mexico City. Be sure to choose a neighborhood that resonates with your individuality. Also, make sure it aligns with your aspirations.

You have officially discovered the best places to stay in Mexico City. Now all you need to do is book a ticket and experience it for yourself. Contact our support team today for a personalized stay in Mexico City!

How to Spend 3 Days in Mexico City

Photo by: Ramiro Reyna Jr

Are you in search of an incredible three-day itinerary for Mexico City? You’ve landed in the perfect spot! 

Mexico City may appear overwhelming due to its sheer size. It has a population exceeding 20 million. Fully exploring this captivating capital might take a while. However, immersing yourself in a 3-day adventure is sufficient to glimpse the city’s abundant historical and cultural tapestry. Dive into this 3-day, postcard-worthy, and walk-friendly Mexico City itinerary!

Ready to visit Mexico City? If you want to sufficiently explore most of the city’s cultural and historical tapestry, plan your three-day Mexico City tour with us!

Are three days enough for your Mexico City tours?

Mexico City Angel de la Independencia

Three days may not allow you to fully explore each corner of Mexico City. However, it can still give you an enjoyable and meaningful experience. The city, vast and culturally rich, boasts a myriad of attractions. With careful planning, 3 days are enough to cover key landmarks and cultural sites. You can also taste the local cuisine in three days.

For a meaningful and enjoyable 3 day Mexico City tour, you need to consider the following tips:

  1. Prioritize must-see attractions: Concentrate on the must-visit attractions that align with your interests. Therefore, your Mexico City itinerary must cover some of the city’s highlights.
  2. Efficient planning: You should efficiently organize your days. For instance, take into account the proximity of attractions to optimize/maximize your time. We recommend using public transportation or guided tours to streamline your movement in the city. This will save time. 
  3. Local experiences: You should allocate time for local experiences. That could mean trying street food, exploring markets, or attending cultural events. These activities can offer a more authentic feel of the city.
  4. Flexible schedule: Stay open to adjusting your itinerary based on interests and unexpected discoveries. Sometimes, the best experiences happen when you least expect them.
  5. Consider return visits: If there are specific areas or attractions you couldn’t cover in three days, consider it an opportunity to plan a return trip to Mexico City.

The Perfect 3-Day Mexico City Itinerary

Mexico City Itinerary: Day 1

Your first day in Mexico City should be spent familiarizing yourself with city life and exploring the historical and cultural highlights in the city. There will be lots of great walking tours. This will allow you to discover hidden gems and enjoy the local atmosphere. The good thing is that you can easily find your way between the best attractions!

Here is the Day-1 Mexico City itinerary that you can use for your tour in this city:

Places to visit in Mexico CityTime to visitMexico City what to do (activities)
Zocalo and Historic CenterMorningStart your day at the Zocalo, explore the Metropolitan Cathedral, and visit the National Palace.
Templo Mayor and Anthropology MuseumAfternoonDive into Aztec history at the Templo Mayor archaeological site.
Spend the afternoon at the National Museum of Anthropology to understand Mexico’s diverse cultures.
CoyoacánEveningHead to the charming neighborhood of Coyoacán for dinner. Explore the central square and visit the Frida Kahlo Museum (Casa Azul) if time allows

Mexico City Itinerary: Day 2

While you may decide to spend your second day within the city, we recommend going further afield to the iconic Chapultepec Park. You should get an early start as you may need more hours to dive into the parks, art, and local flavors.

Start your second day in Mexico City with the following itinerary:

Places to visit in Mexico CityTime to visitMexico City what to do (activities)
Chapultepec Park and CastleMorningSpend the morning in Chapultepec Park, visiting Chapultepec Castle for panoramic views of the city.
Soumaya Museum and Jumex MuseumAfternoonExplore the striking Soumaya Museum and the nearby Jumex Museum, both known for their impressive art collections.
Lucha Libre ShowEveningExperience the excitement of Mexican wrestling with a Lucha Libre show in the evening.

Mexico City Itinerary: Day 3

Choosing what to do on your third day in Mexico City is not easy because there is a vast range of great things to do. Here are some of the best ways to spend your last day in Mexico City, depending on what you are in the mood for:

Places to visit in Mexico CityTime to visitMexico City what to do (activities)
Mercado de la MercedMorningImmerse yourself in the local culture at Mercado de la Merced, one of the largest markets in the city.
Xochimilco Mexico CityAfternoonTake a boat ride in Xochimilco Mexico City, enjoying the colorful canals and lively atmosphere.
Roma or CondesaEveningConclude your trip with a delicious dinner in the trendy neighborhoods of Roma or Condesa.

If you need help creating your three-day Mexico City itinerary, we can create a tailored itinerary for an unforgettable tour in Mexico City.

Places to stay for your 3-day Mexico City tour

Roma Norte Mexico City
Roma Norte neighborhood

There are many different places to stay around Mexico City. Most of these neighborhoods are cool. However, you should stay in a central place for easy access to the most popular sites in the city. 

We recommend staying in either Centro Historico, Roma Norte, or Condesa neighborhoods. They have plenty of hostels ideal for a first-time visit, especially if you are staying on a budget.

Centro Historico is at the heart of everything and among most of the main attractions in Mexico City. This makes for a convenient base for easy traveling and access to main attraction sites. Roma Norte and Condesa are trendier neighborhoods. They will give you a feeling of, “Should I move here?”

We know the city better than anyone, so do not hesitate to contact us to help you find the best places and villas to stay.

How to get around in Mexico City for your 3-day tour

Mexico City is notorious for its high traffic and crowded public transportation. However, you will still find a way to get around efficiently/easily without losing your cool.

Personally, Taxi is my favorite way to navigate around Mexico City because it is safe and cheap. You can use authorized taxi stands for a safer and more regulated experience. Alternatively, you can use ride-hailing apps, such as Uber.

Public buses are the other affordable option that covers a vast network of routes throughout Mexico City. However, the extensive network can be confusing for first-time visitors. You can also use the decent metro system. However, you will want to avoid using it at peak rush hour times.

Additionally, many areas of Mexico City, especially in the central neighborhoods, are pedestrian-friendly. So, walking will allow you to discover hidden gems and enjoy the local atmosphere.

Another option is to hire a tour company. They will give you a comfortable and customized experience, especially if you have specific destinations in mind. They’ll pick you up from your hotel and take you to your predetermined destination. This means you will have no wasted time.

Need help moving around in Mexico City? Our experienced and knowledgeable team can organize a tour guide. Reach out for a consultation today!

Wrap-Up: Unforgettable 3 Days in Mexico City

In conclusion, Mexico City’s dynamic blend of history, culture, and vibrant energy makes it an ideal destination for a three-day tour. Whether exploring the historic heart, wandering through art-filled parks, or navigating the lively canals of Xochimilco Mexico City, each day promises a unique adventure. Let this curated itinerary serve as a roadmap for an unforgettable 3-day tour in one of the world’s most captivating metropolises.

Now you know how to spend your three-day Mexico City tour, you can start planning your trip with us. Contact our team to tailor-make your experience.

The Michelin Guide is Coming to CDMX: A Guide to Some of the Best Restaurants in Mexico City in 2024

Argentine Chef Estanis Carenzo prepares a dish in the kitchen of the Pujol restaurant of Mexican chef Enrique Olvera.

The thriving and cosmopolitan city of Mexico City is rapidly gaining ground in the foodie world. It has been labeled as the next city that the Michelin Guide has set its sights on to celebrate its gastronomic excellence.

The Michelin Guide recently announced that it will soon be arriving in Mexico City. Finally, the restaurants that have already been spearheading the gastronomic scene for years will be given well-deserved recognition. Foodies around the world are anxiously awaiting the list, which will be revealed in early 2024. Many restaurants in Mexico City that have already been appearing on lists of the world’s best restaurants for years will receive their official seal of approval. These restaurants, which are a celebration of local and unconventional ingredients, alongside the creative talent of their head chefs, promise nothing less than the best. 


Mexico is a country that unapologetically celebrates the richness and diversity of its culture. We can see this through its music, languages, artisan crafts, and of course, food. Its streets are full of noise, friendly chaos, and delicious smells. Everywhere you go in Mexico City, you inevitably run into a different gastronomic delight. From street food such as chapulines (crunchy edible grasshoppers), esquites (corn off-the-cob with mayo, cheese, and spice), and of course, tacos, to high-end restaurants and fine dining, the city is positively bursting with flavor. Traditions in Mexico City are as deep-rooted and ancient as the crumbling cathedral in its historic center, or the handmade tortillas made by Mexican abuelas on street corners. In recent years, we have seen exponential growth in the number of Michelin-star-worthy restaurants. This is truly something worthy of celebration.

What’s in a name?: How Michelin Stars are Awarded

Almost 100 years ago, in 1926, the Michelin Guide was born. And since then, the process of anonymously reviewing of some of the best restaurants in the world has grown in popularity and prestige. The Michelin Guide has inspired some of the world’s best chefs to make their dreams of culinary success come true. 

The Michelin Guide looks for the following five items on their checklist of what makes a restaurant (or chef) deserving of a Michelin Star: 

1) The quality of the produce
2) The harmony of the flavors
3) The mastery of cooking techniques
4) The personality of the chef as reflected in the cuisine
5) Consistency throughout the menus and over time

With all that being said, come and explore with us some of the best restaurants in Mexico City. These restaurants have been touted as deserving of a Michelin Star due to their creativity, use of local ingredients, and consistent quality over the years. 

Need help planning your trip to Mexico City? Our concierge team can book restaurants, tours, and much more. Reach out for a consultation today

Pujol – “The Best Restaurant in Mexico”

Photo by: Luca Salas

Located in affluent Polanco, a trip to Mexico City wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the famous Pujol. Pujol is tipped to be one of the first restaurants to receive an official Michelin Star. Chef Enrique Olvera is the driving force behind this gastronomic masterpiece. Ranked #13 in the “World’s 50 Best” restaurants in 2023, and #1 in Mexico, it is safe to say that Pujol is a strong contender.

The colorful and stylish dishes change daily and throughout the year. We love how this means you can return as many times as you like in the year and always have a unique experience. However, one constant on their menu is the “Mole Madre”, the signature dish comprised of over 100 ingredients and cooked over 2,852 days. The depth and richness of its flavor make it worth the trip alone just to try this mole. Pujol is big on sustainability and works directly with local farmers and ingredients. 


Chef Olvera offers two different dining experiences within the restaurant. You can dine at the bar, Omakase-style, or in a more traditional way, in the restaurant. During the Japanese-inspired Omakase experience, the guest lets the chef guide the experience. Let the sommelier guide you on the best wines to drink by the glass to accompany each dish. The average cost of the 7-course sit-down tasting menu is $2565 MXN pesos, or around $150 USD. In our opinion, an excellent price to pay for one of the best dining experiences to be found in the Americas.

Quintonil – New Wave Mexican with an Indigenous Twist

Photo by: Amol Panchabhai

Also gracing the “World’s 50 Best” restaurant list, this time coming in at #9 in 2023, is the emblematic Quintonil. Showcasing exotic and indigenous ingredients such as ant larvae and cactus, head chef Jorge Vallejo never fails to impress. Vallejo, who previously worked at top restaurants Noma and Pujol, is creative yet loyal to his Mexican roots. Vallejo takes humble ingredients such as corn, beans, and tlayudas (handmade crunchy tortilla) and elevates them to haute cuisine levels. Quintonil grows many of their own ingredients in an off-site garden, right in the middle of Mexico City’s upscale Polanco neighborhood. The exploration of Mexico and its biodiversity in Quintonil’s menu places it firmly amongst the best restaurants in Mexico City. 


The 11-course tasting menu at Quintonil will set you back $4500 MXN (around $260 USD). If you want it with wine pairing, you will pay $6825 MXN (around $400 USD) per person. There are also a-la-carte options for a lighter dining experience.

Rosetta – Creative Reinterpretation of Classic Dishes

Rosetta restaurant, Colonia Roma, Mexico City

Another restaurant that is tirelessly working to receive recognition by the Michelin Group as one of the best restaurants in Mexico City, and thus deserving of a Michelin Star, is Rosetta. Chef Elena Reygadas is a woman of many talents. From writing books and literature to designing the menu at Rosetta, her work across different aspects of gastronomic culture is what earned her the title of The World’s Best Female Chef 2023. Enjoy hearty dishes such as homemade pasta and gnocchi and a selection of cheeses with dessert. Reygadas´ passion for baking also shines through her menu, thanks to her training at the French Culinary Institute. The a-la-carte menu varies in price but will set you back approximately $1000 MXN per person (around $60 USD) for three courses, not including drinks. 

Sud777 – Innovative Mexican Vegetable Dishes

Photo by: Cathy Chaplin

Chef Edgar Nuñez is a true artist, creating visually stunning dishes from simple yet high-quality ingredients. His focus on the exploration of vegetables in his dishes – both to accompany meat and fish and as the stars of the show – has placed Sud777 on the map as one of the best restaurants in Mexico City. Sud777 offers a regular tasting menu and a vegan tasting menu. Located in the south of Mexico City, Sud777 displays a wide variety of textures, flavors, and culinary techniques. In terms of costs, the tasting menu costs $1850 MXN (approximately $100 USD), with wine pairing costing $900 MXN (around $50 USD).

Tips for Visiting Michelin-Standard Restaurants in Mexico City

Despite being potentially cheaper in Mexico than in the US or other European countries, the Michelin-star dining experience remains vastly similar. Make a reservation plenty of time in advance to avoid disappointment. Dress formally; the restaurants mentioned above have a sophisticated ambiance, and it is best that you look the part. Make sure to warn the restaurant whilst booking of any dietary restrictions. For example, if you are vegetarian, vegan, celiac, or if you have any other specific allergies. Some restaurants may not be able to accommodate all needs. Embrace the local flavors and ingredients, as many of the best restaurants in Mexico City pride themselves on showcasing the country’s rich culinary heritage. Lastly, savor the moment—Michelin-standard dining is not just about the food but also the overall experience, from impeccable service to the exquisite presentation of each dish.

Whether you are in Mexico City to experience its culture, food, or explore its stunning landscapes, our team of experts is here to guide your way

Medellin’s Coolest Neighborhoods: Best Medellin Guide

The vibrant metropolis of Medellín, Colombia has become a hub of activity for business owners, digital nomads, trade, and tourism. As you navigate its streets, you’ll discover a tapestry of neighborhoods, each with its own unique charm and character. Explore with us Medellin’s coolest neighborhoods and where to stay on your upcoming trip.

Medellín is known for being a modern city that has something for everyone. From the trendy streets of El Poblado to the artistic enclave of Laureles, join us as we explore the beating heart of Medellín and uncover the hidden gems that make each neighborhood a testament to the city’s resilience and creativity. This city of 2.5 million inhabitants is surprisingly easy to navigate. It is the only city in Colombia that has a metro system, which is clean and well looked after. There is also a cable car system to reach some neighborhoods tucked up at the top of the valley. Uber and other taxi apps are also commonly used and super affordable. So read on to get the local’s guide on Medellin’s coolest neighborhoods and start planning your next trip!

Ready to visit Medellín? If you want to enjoy this wonderful city with unique experiences and adjusted to all your requirements we got you!

Poblado: The Trendy Hub

El Poblado is the go-to neighborhood for many people visiting the city for the first time. This vast neighborhood has a lot of the main bars, clubs, and restaurants. It is buzzing with activity and movement at night. If Poblado were a person, he would be your party-mad friend who drags you out every night of the week; a total foodie who can’t say no to a tasty cocktail. Always impeccably dressed and super sociable, but with expensive taste. Definitely a friend to keep close!

Poblado is a great place to stay for those who wish to be near all the main action. For that reason, we would generally recommend el Poblado for those who are visiting Medellin for just a few days. With less need to catch taxis or the Metro, a lot of this neighborhood is walkable, especially if you are staying near Parque Lleras or Provenza. Provenza, like the song immortalized by Reggaeton artist Karol G, is for sure one of Medellín’s coolest neighborhoods. This swish, upscale neighborhood is safe and walkable and home to some of the nicest bars, clubs, and restaurants in Medellin. Cruise down the tree-lined streets and pop into a speakeasy hidden behind a bookshelf, or enjoy a stylish cocktail frozen with dry ice. Walking the streets of Provenza will have you feeling like a celebrity; and you probably will be rubbing shoulders with a few, too. 

Coffee and brunch connoisseurs simply cannot leave Medellin without having visited the famous coffee shop Pergamino. Just a few blocks away from Parque Lleras and Provenza, Pergamino serves fresh, local coffee beans and is THE place to head to cure a hangover on a Sunday morning. They are also pet-friendly, and the beautiful dogs of Medellin are sure to bring you much joy. Foodies will be pleased to learn that the majority of the best restaurants in the city are concentrated in this area. You could have one of the best gastronomic experiences of your life just a few steps from your villa.

Check out our blog on the best restaurants in Medellin for the insider scoop on the hottest spots to eat in the city of eternal Spring.

Laureles – For local charm and artistic vibes

Laureles is probably the second most popular neighborhood for expats and tourists in Medellin. A little more residential, and a little more low-key than el Poblado, Laureles is the perfect place to spend a little more time. We love the laid-back vibes of Laureles, but also the fact that it still has some incredible restaurants, brunch spots, and a party district too. There is a pretty young crowd in Laureles, as it is a University district. You will often find digital nomads and young expats working remotely from its many coffee shops. Laureles is also packed with parks and green spaces, and football (soccer) lovers will be pleased to find out that this neighborhood is home to Medellín’s main football stadium. 

If you’re looking for a local party and don’t want to head into the hedonistic center of Parque Lleras in el Poblado, you can enjoy a more local party scene at “La 70”. Carrera 70 in Laureles is a strip where you can go bar-hopping and enjoy the local music scene. Think Salsa, Vallenato, Bachata, and many beautiful Colombians who are willing to teach you the dance moves. Laureles in general is cheaper than el Poblado, from the nights out to the cost of rent. Another reason why it is a clear winner amongst so many visitors and one of the coolest neighborhoods in Medellin.

Envigado – The Hidden Gem

Envigado is a super chill and very green neighborhood located in the southeast of Medellin. Technically a municipality rather than part of the city itself, Envigado is well-connected to the bustling city center by metro, local buses, and taxis. Envigado is another neighborhood that would be great to stay longer periods of time. Get a glimpse into middle-class Medellin life in the leafy streets of Envigado. Here, you will find lots of families and expats. It is a bit further from the main attractions, which for some is an attraction in itself.

Enjoy the beautiful parks such as Parque El Salado, which offer activities such as hiking, climbing walls, and bird watching. You might even see some monkeys in the trees! Parque El Dorado in Envigado is also the perfect place for dog walking or for kids to play. Pack a picnic and get out in nature during your stay in suburban Envigado. There are plenty more attractions in Envigado such as Finca La Leona, a coffee farm where you can get a tour of the coffee-making process in stunning green surroundings. Adventurous travelers can also get a bus to Arenales. Here, you can go hiking from Pablo Escobar’s “jail” La Catedral through pine forest, and past waterfalls and natural springs. Having all of this so close to the city is one of our favorite things about Medellin.

Belén – Authentic Colombian Experience

High-angle view of “Pueblito Paisa” main square at early dusk on Cerro Nutibara of Medellin, Antioquia, Colombia

If you want a taste of real Colombian life, try Belén, Medellin. It’s a residential neighborhood that is close to everything, with a super chill vibe. One of the first things you will surely notice about Belén is the difference in price compared to el Poblado and Laureles in particular. It’s super affordable, and many working to middle-class Colombians live here. Belén is pretty safe, and people are friendly, due to its residential feel. It is best for cheaper accommodation and long-term rentals. However, you will need to speak Spanish if you plan on staying in Belén for a longer period of time. It’s not nearly as touristic as the other neighborhoods we have mentioned. So dust off your Duolingo subscription and become a real paisa during your stay! It’s the best way to get the authentic Colombian experience!

There is plenty to do in Belén too; don’t miss out on visiting the Pueblito Paisa, located at the top of Cerro Nutibara. This mini replica of an old Antioquian town is a cute day out for a date or for families. You can try some traditional food and drink, and take in the sights of the city. A visit to Pueblito Paisa is an unmissable Belén experience in Medellin. Belén is also home to Parque de Belén, a central park where locals gather to enjoy outdoor activities.

Wherever you decide to stay during your trip to Medellin, you are sure to find a completely unique experience in each of these thriving barrios. Whether you are looking to party in El Poblado or blend in with the locals in a quaint coffee shop in Laureles, every neighborhood tells a story. There is truly something for everybody in Medellin. So, lace up your shoes and get ready to explore—the coolest neighborhoods of Medellín are waiting to be discovered.

Now you have a better idea of where you want to stay in Medellin, you can start planning your trip. Get in touch with our team today to tailor-make your experience!

How To Celebrate Dia de Los Muertos in Mexico City

Mexico City is a bustling metropolis filled with history, culture, and vibrant traditions. And comes alive during the first days of November as it prepares to celebrate Dia de los Muertos. This captivating and deeply rooted Mexican holiday is a unique and exciting experience that allows you to connect with the country’s rich heritage and celebrate life and death at its fullest. Here is our guide on what is dia de los Muertos, its importance, where to go and how to make the most of it.

Prepare yourself for a journey into a world of vibrant colors, exciting traditions, and an electrifying atmosphere unlike any other. Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead, is a celebration that invites you to Mexico City, where life and death dance together in a kaleidoscope of hues and emotions. This captivating and deeply rooted Mexican holiday is an explosion of culture, a celebration of life, and a joyful remembrance of loved ones who have passed away.

Get ready to be swept away by the colorful and exciting world of Dia de los Muertos in Mexico City!

Start planning this amazing experience and let us be your local Mexico City guide even before you arrive. Two Travel can help build your journey – from accommodation to day trips to restaurant reservations and more.


Understanding Dia de Los Muertos, When and What to do

Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a Mexican tradition that honors and celebrates loved ones who have passed away. Far from being a sad occasion, it’s a lively and colorful festival that reflects Mexico’s unique blend of indigenous and Catholic traditions. The celebration spans from October 31st to November 2nd and is marked by various customs and rituals.

Ofrendas (Altars)
Families create ofrendas, elaborate altars adorned with photographs, favorite foods, and mementos of their departed loved ones. These altars serve as a way to welcome and honor the spirits of the deceased back into the world of the living.

Calaveras (Sugar Skulls)
Sugar skulls, intricately decorated with vibrant colors and elaborated designs, are a hallmark of Dia de los Muertos. These are often given as gifts or placed on ofrendas.

Marigolds
Bright orange marigold flowers, known as cempasúchil, are believed to guide the souls of the departed to the ofrendas. You’ll see them everywhere during the celebration.

Catrinas
Elaborately dressed skeletons known as Catrinas are a prominent symbol of Dia de los Muertos. You’ll find people dressed as Catrinas in all the parades and festivals.

Traditional Foods
Traditional Mexican dishes, such as tamales, pan de muerto (bread of the dead), and mole, are prepared and shared among families during this time.

The Importance of Dia de Los Muertos

Dia de los Muertos holds immense cultural and spiritual significance for Mexicans. It’s a time when families come together to remember and celebrate their ancestors, reinforcing that death is not an end but a continuation of life. This celebration showcases Mexico’s rich indigenous heritage, blending it seamlessly with Catholicism, creating a unique and profound experience for both locals and visitors.

If you need help planning your trip to Mexico, get in touch. We’ll help you create a whole Mexico experience – helping you find accommodation, organizing transport and tours, and getting you that sought-after reservation.

Best Things to Do in Dia de Los Muertos

Parades and festivals are some of the most exhilarating and visually stunning aspects of Dia de los Muertos. These events provide a unique opportunity to witness the lively and colorful traditions associated with the holiday. Here are some of the most prominent parades and festivals, along with tips on when and how to enjoy them:

Desfile de Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead Parade)
The main parade typically takes place on November 2nd, the culmination of the Dia de los Muertos celebrations. Arrive early to secure a good viewing spot along the parade route, which usually runs at Avenida Reforma. The parade features elaborate floats, giant Catrina puppets, marching bands, and people dressed in stunning Catrina costumes. Join in the festivities by wearing your own Day of the Dead-themed attire or face paint.

Mega Ofrenda at Zócalo
The Mega Ofrenda, a massive altar dedicated to the deceased, is on display in the Zócalo, the main square of Mexico City, throughout the Dia de los Muertos celebration.

Visit the Zócalo during your stay to witness this breathtaking ofrenda, which often has a unique theme each year. It’s a free and accessible attraction that allows you to appreciate the artistic and cultural aspects of Dia de los Muertos.

Festivals and Other Traditions in Dia de Muertos

Festival de las Almas (Festival of Souls)
This multi-day festival typically takes place in late October and early November.

Check the festival schedule for events like live music, dance performances, art exhibitions, and workshops held at various venues across the city. It’s an excellent opportunity to immerse yourself in the artistic and cultural aspects of Dia de los Muertos.

Coyoacán’s Dia de los Muertos Festival
Coyoacán, a historic neighborhood in Mexico City, is renowned for its Dia de los Muertos celebrations. Stroll through its streets adorned with ofrendas, join in the festivities, and enjoy delicious traditional foods and drinks from street vendors.

Xochimilco’s Day of the Dead Traditions
Xochimilco, famous for its picturesque canals and colorful boats, celebrates Dia de los Muertos in a unique way. Take a traditional trajinera (boat) ride adorned with marigold flowers and candles while enjoying live music and food. The atmosphere here is both festive and reflective, making it a memorable experience.

When attending these parades and festivals, be sure to arrive early, wear comfortable clothing, and bring cash for food, beverages, and souvenirs. These events are not just spectacles but opportunities to connect with the cultural richness and vibrant spirit of Dia de los Muertos in Mexico City.

If you are looking for the best neighborhoods and places to stay read our guide to Where to Stay in Mexico City

Other things to do and where to go to make the most of your Dia de Muertos experience

Explore Cemeteries
Visit the cemeteries, especially the renowned Mixquic Cemetery, which is beautifully decorated with candles and marigolds. You can witness families paying their respects and participating in nighttime vigils.

Artisan Markets
Explore the artisan markets, such as Mercado de Jamaica, where you can buy traditional Dia de los Muertos crafts, including sugar skulls and papel picado (decorative paper).

Museums and Galleries
Many museums and galleries host Dia de los Muertos exhibitions, providing insight into the history and artistry of the holiday.

Taste Traditional Foods
Savor authentic Mexican dishes at local restaurants and street food vendors. Try pan de muerto, hot chocolate, and other festive treats.

And now that you finally booked your trip to Mexico City you won’t want to miss all the other things this amazing city has to offer so take a look at our Mexico City Experiences or contact us for a fully planned itinerary, we’re here to help you have the best vacation.