I arrived in the beginning of my trip in Yucatan to DF and took one day to visit Teotihuacan site. When I came back after one week playing Indiana Jones in the pyramids, I took a week-end to enjoy the city and celebrate the “Dia de los Muertos”.
Teotihuacan was the largest city in the pre-Columbian in America, its construction has been determined around 300BC, and stay quite mysterious. The Aztecs arriving to the empty city thought it was the place where the Gods were created, or where they built the Universe! We don’t really know yet why the place has been left, or what the pyramids were made for (sacrifices surely).
You will start your visit from the south part, visiting first a citadel and the Temple of Quetzalcóalt (the Plumed Serpent) where a tunnel had been recently found. Then you will start your way to the Calzada de los muertos (the Roadway of the Dead), seing habitations from each sides before go up the Pyramid of the Sun, the tallest one.
Behind this huge pyramid, you will find the museum of teotihuacan culture with the bones discovered behind the pyramids and other reliques which gives you highlight of the development of the city.
In the end of the visit you will arrive to the Moon pyramid, and the courtyard of the Quetzalpapálot palace where you can still enjoy the painted on the walls.
Once you exit the site, you can visit the small Museum of murals and take back the bus to Mexico DF.
You would need at least 4 hours to visit everything fully, you can climb all the ruins and even if it’s full of tourists, it’s unmissable!
To get there: Metro line 5 yellow to Autobuses del Norte stop and go “puerta 8” where you will find buses for 50 MXN (45min drive)
You can no longer climb on the pyramids…
After this gorgeous site I had 2 days to visit the capital of Mexico
What to do in Mexico DF
After one week in the nice and quiet countryside (in Yucatan) I must admit I haven’t been really happy to come back to this huge capital. I just had a couple of days to discover this city… I’ve walked a lot in the historic center, Coyoacán and Xochimilco areas, and visited the museum of anthropology. I met in the hostel an american from California who joined me to share the first day of those visits.
I had an hostel one block from the Cathedral, so I visited a lot this area. I would recommend to visit its bells, and the ruins of Templo Mayor right behind the cathedral (as the majority of the catholic churches, they used the stones of the old temples to build it…). I advise you to visit the museum (85$MX).
Taking the 5 de mayo street I arrived to this gorgeous building, and walked until the San Juan market, and then came back crossing the Barrio Chino to join the historic center.
Museo Nacional de Antropologia
You need at least 2h to visit this museum, it was so huge I think you can take much more time! Then I walked until the Angel de la Independencía passing by Condesa and Roma nice areas. If you have time you can also climb Chapultepec castle in the heart of a parc.
Museo Nacional de las Culturas
Starting from the Zocalo, the cathedral place, there’s a pedestrian zone where you will find a very nice museum of cultures latin american (and others).
Thanks to the bad weather this very touristic place was empty, and we were able negotiate the price of one embarcation for two 300$MX (in 2016). It was a nice boat trip, but nothing really special but there was the traditional mariachis playing music on an embarcation! After 1h we came back and went to a market few blocs from the port, a very local place I totally recommend.
The museum of Frida Kahlo was closed but we enjoyed all the Coyoacán area with all the animations for the Dia de los Muertos (good food, hot chocolate, pan de muerto… delicious!). We also visited the Parroquia San Juan Bautista and stood at the Cervecería de Barrio to wait for the rain to stop…
Celebrate El dia de los Muertos
Mexico DF wasn’t really the best place to celebrate this special day. All the city was decorated for the event, and the streets were full of performances, offerings, and people dressed incredibly scary, but that’s it. For the first year they prepared a parade (that I missed) because of the reputation the last James Bond had generated, but I think the countryside is better to fully enjoy the traditions!