Hi Magno readers! The Magno Insights are some of the learnings I’ve come to after 25 years of traveling experience in Mexico. By taking advantage of these inputs you will go a little beyond in your trips in Mexico. Hope these pieces of advice be useful for you. Thank you for following me on my social media.
So, some recommendations for Mexico City are:
* As it is an immensely large city with varied tourism attractions, I strongly recommend having a strategy for visiting, either an individual one for solo traveling or in groups.
* Personally, and after having visited the city over 100 times, I recommend covering the city through the visit to their alive essences that give it identity and personality, I mean to visit their typical neighborhoods.
* However, if the choice of your visit is purely thematic, I mean you seek to absorb the delicacies of the big city through its culture, gastronomy, history, or why not, its intense sports offerings, then the strategy to experience the city would go through what I call and recommend as thematic routes.
* Also, the way you approach your visit will be determined if you do it on solo traveling or in a group, and the latter can be as part of a specialized tour provided by a dedicated tour agency or tour operator.
In this particular case, I recommend that you consult an established tour provider that visits the city’s key points and themes, such as the companies “Turibus” and “Capital Bus,” whose menu of both general and specialized tours allow you to get to know the city uniquely.
* I also recommend that you let yourself be carried away by the magic of the city with no other plans in between. Something I do sometimes is simply let myself be carried away by the charms of the city. Let me explain myself.
I start by standing, for example, in Paseo de la Reforma and from there I just start walking (or it can be by bicycle or “scooters” (“Patines del Diablo” that’s how we call them around here) and without having a pre-established plan,
I let myself be trapped and carried away by the magic of the corridor of the first section of Chapultepec (Primera Sección de Chapultepec) or by those little streets of the so-called “Roma” or “Juárez” neighborhoods. Whatever comes out is a unique opportunity to discover aspects that only the city reveals to intrepid explorers.
* The mobility that Mexico City offers is unique. The global system of public transportation is remarkably developed and extended. The backbone of this system is the Metropolitan Collective Transportation System, known only as of the “Metro.” A network which comprises 12 lines and 195 access stations.
Most of the day you will find it crowded. Sometimes too much crowded. I recommend avoiding transfers during the so-called “peak” hours, I mean times when passengers demand increases, which are from Monday to Friday from 06.00 AM to 09.30-10.00 AM and from 5.30 PM to 9.30 PM approximately.
* The gastronomic options in Mexico City are little less than immense, abundant, and for all likings. Mexican food, of course, but also international cuisine such as French, Spanish, Chinese, German, Indian, Korean, Cantonese, etc.
From the high-end restaurants located in places like the Historic Center, the neighborhoods of “Coyoacán” or “San Ángel,” “Paseo de la Reforma” or the “Condesa” neighborhood, to the commercial restaurants with pre-defined menus or the so-called “comida corrida,” to the typical restaurants or “fondas,” public markets, street markets or “tianguis,” semi-fixed stands on public highways and even “ferias” or temporary festivals of certain traditional dishes.
My formal recommendation will be to approach the city’s gastronomic offer according to three aspects: 1.) The specific type of food you would like to enjoy, i.e. Mexican, typical or Spanish, etc. or 2.) Any food offer depending on the particular area you are visiting or 3.) Make a visit specifically for culinary purposes.
One recommendation that I offer you as part of my repeated visits to the city is to dedicate an exclusive tour on some time that you have, I mean to open a space to visit some of the 144 native towns of Mexico City.
Located throughout the length and breadth of what used to be known as the “Political Delegations,” now known as the “Mayorships,” they are a micro gateway that will transport you to other authentic realities that refuse to cease, that refuse to exist because of the constant advance of modernity.
* Xochimilco. I advise you to dedicate special attention to this historic neighborhood, a typical and folkloric spot and “Mayorship” located south of the big city made up of 15 original villages, which does not lose its essence of real Mexican taste and historical and traditional authenticity.
Its colors, aromas, textures, tastes, views, and sounds will leave their mark on anyone’s soul. The place where flowers are born is also the place where Mexico City asserts itself as unique and varied. There are specialized tours that go around it or you can also let yourself be carried away by its charms which don’t disappoint any explorer.
* Something that I also recommend when you visit the Aztec capital is not to stop listening to the city, I mean, what the city sounds like.
From the voices of street sellers, markets, or “tianguis” to the music of the typical fairs or the one of musical groups that entertain the diverse festivities of the city like the famous festival “Noche de Primavera” to the daily sounds, sui generis and purely urban, Mexico city has its own trademarked sounds.
The city sounds, and my advice as a Mexican travel blogger, is to listen to the cities or towns, they also talk to their explorers in very subtle ways, in means which hardened travelers know how to listen to them.