Vibrant, cultured, and cosmopolitan, Mexico City has undergone a renaissance in recent years, and has blossomed into a world-class travel destination. If fascinating history, delicious cuisine, and fantastic art, murals, and architecture are your thing, you’ll find plenty of it everywhere you look in Mexico’s capital city, home to nearly 9 million residents. Western Union (WU) has put together a list of 5 must-see attractions in Mexico City so you can make the most of your visit.
The center of Mexico City, this vast plaza is home to the Cathedral of Mexico City, the National Palace, and the Colonial Arcade, and is one of the world’s largest city squares. Not only can visitors explore amazing architecture, they can experience authentic dance shows and street vendors selling pottery, jewelry, Toltec masks, sweaters, and the like that make for unique souvenirs. Visitors to the Zocalo may want to dine at the plaza’s El Mayor restaurant, to enjoy a spectacular view of the nearby Templo Mayor archaeological site.
Once hidden underground until it was unearthed in 1978 during subway construction, this ancient sacred Aztec religious site was built over by Spanish conquerors. Templo Mayor is an active dig site, as archaeologists continue to unearth precious artifacts and structures from the buried Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan. Statues, pottery, and historical artifacts from the site can be viewed in Templo Mayor’s museum.
Museo Frida Kahlo
Casa Azul, the lifelong home of famous Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, has been turned into a museum dedicated to her life and relationship with legendary Mexican artist Diego Rivera. Jewelry, clothing, photos, kitchen items, crafts, and other everyday objects from her life are housed there, as well as a collection of her art. A popular stop for tourists, be sure to arrive early to avoid crowds.
Diego and Frida’s sun-drenched studio space, located just up the road from Casa Azul, is also a sight to see, where paint brushes and easels stand ready for use, as if the artists just stepped out for a moment.
Palacio Nacional de Bellas Artes
Serving as Mexico’s national theatre, this gorgeous, multi-domed fine arts palace mixes Art Nouveau, Neoclasscial, and Art Deco styles. The theatre is the main venue of the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico, and hosts exhibitions and theatrical performances throughout the year. The building also boasts epic murals from some of Mexico’s greatest artists, like Diego Rivera and Jose Clemente Orozco, and a Tiffany stained-glass curtain that depicts the landscape of the Valley of Mexico.
National Museum of Anthropology
One of the world’s great museums, the National Museum houses an amazing collection of Aztec, Toltec, and Mayan sculptures and art, giving visitors a glimpse into a lost civilization. The Aztec sun disc, the centerpiece of the museum, weighs more than 21 metric tons and is a breathtaking sight.
Visiting these must-see attractions during your trip to Mexico City will surely give you memories to last a lifetime. If you’ve been to Mexico City, what were your favorite places to visit? Tell us in the comments!