Mexico City is one of the earliest metropolises in North America. It is vibrant and bustling with beautiful attractions celebrating its intricate history and rich culture, drawing enthusiastic tourists from all over the world.
You might wonder where to start your adventures in this stunning city, so we would like to recommend five unique attractions that reveal the deep and enduring magic of Mexico City that will leave you wanting more.
1. Palacio Nacional
The Palacio Nacional, or the National Palace, serves as Mexico’s federal branch of government, housing the president’s office and the Federal Treasury. One of the main attractions at this site is the Biblioteca Miguel Lerdo de Tejada, which is one of the most well-known libraries in Mexico. The walls in the library are filled with stunning, colorful murals and include many works by Mexico’s beloved Diego Rivera.
2. Fuente de Tláloc in Chapultepec Park
To refer to the Fuente de Tláloc as a mere sculpture is an understatement. The massive tiled fountain is another work by Mexico’s Diego Rivera that encapsulates the essence of the Mexican people’s spirit. Located deep in the Bosque de Chapultepec, or Chapultepec Forest, Rivera was inspired to craft this piece because of his work to improve Mexico City’s infrastructure, starting with the municipal water system. The tiled sculpture is named for the god of rain, Tláloc, and spans a pool that spreads 100 feet wide.
3. Templo Mayor
The Templo Mayor, or Main Temple in the Aztec city of Tenochtitlan, is a must-see attraction. While the original temple was razed and replaced by a cathedral in the 16th century during the Spanish conquest, the haunting and awe-inspiring ruins remain. You can find the Templo Mayor in the Centro Histórico, surrounded by the modern streets and buildings of Mexico City. Fortunately, the site features a well-organized museum to help fill out the details, using the existing ruins as a powerful launch point for your imagination to take over and visualize the ancient Aztec civilization in its full glory.
4. Xochimilco – The Floating Gardens of Mexico City
While it’s wonderful to see the ruins and museums of Mexico City, sometimes you need to indulge in some serious nature, and Xochimilco will hit the spot. In Aztec, Xochimilco translates to "place of the flowers," but it has become more commonly and lovingly known as the Floating Gardens. Here in this tranquil setting, you can sit back and relax while gently gliding along the water on a trajinera, also called a chalupa, a flower-colored boat similar to a Venetian gondola. You can enjoy the sights and sounds of the Aztec-created canals, small islands, and surrounding forest land. During your trip, you can enjoy island stops, you can buy food, drinks, and hand-crafted trinkets at organic farms and local shops.
5. Chapultepec Castle
If you want to visit a royal castle in North America, this is your only option, and you’ll love Chapultepec Castle. Besides the castle’s beauty, you’ll get to see sweeping views of Mexico City and the surrounding countryside from this hilltop site. Once you focus on the castle, you’ll see the exquisite 18th-century architecture, luxurious castle rooms, black and white tiled floors, and stained-glass windows.
Hopefully, these unique attractions will help launch your adventures in Mexico City, inspiring many more.