Mexico City in 5 Days: everything you need to know

Tour the most special corners of Mexico City. Take a walk through the Chapultepec Forest, discover a haunted house and enjoy the area of the cities of the world.

Ana Caballero

Ana Caballero

9 min read

Mexico City in 5 Days: everything you need to know

Getting to know Mexico | ©Ivon Gorgonio

Mexico City is very large, but in five days you can cover the most iconic sites perfectly. I recommend dividing it by zone, start your adventure by allocating a full day to explore the Chapultepec area, including the castle, forest and other attractions. You should also visit Roma and Condesa where Parque España is hidden.

Xochimilco is another must-see destination on your itinerary, as is the Zona Rosa whose streets are named after cities around the world. Can you imagine walking down Copenhagen Street in Mexico City? Additionally, the Historic Center is also included in what you can do during 5 days in the region.

Day 1: Explore the Chapultepec area from the forest to the castle

Chapultepec Forest| ©luuzzy :)
Chapultepec Forest| ©luuzzy :)

Chapultepec is considered the lungs of Mexico City, as it is an area full of fun attractions. You can visit the castle, enjoy the fauna and flora in the zoo, take a boat ride on the lake, visit the museums and gardens and many other plans.

For the first day you will visit several points, all located a few minutes away, within the same enclosure. Get ready to enjoy!

Chapultepec Forest

The Chapultepec Forest has become one of the best places to visit in Mexico City. It has areas for yoga, hiking, outdoor walks and more than 100 fountains and monuments.

It is ideal to set aside a few hours of your itinerary and visit the art galleries distributed throughout the forest. This enclosure also offers food areas, green areas to organize picnics and restaurants with indoor and outdoor spaces. The entrance fee is around 5 €.

Chapultepec Zoo

If you want to visit one of the largest zoos in Mexico, I suggest a visit to the Chapultepec Zoo which has been in operation in the Bosque de Chapultepec since 1923.

Keep in mind that this zoo is not open on Mondays and admission is free. What does have a cost is the butterfly area which costs around 2 € and the herpetarium which you can access for around 2 €.

In order to adapt the space to the habitat of the animals, it has grasslands, desert areas, temperate forest, a coastal area and a special enclosure for birds. At the back is the Fountain of the Frogs whose statues were brought from Spain, as it is an exact copy of the fountain located in the Maria Luisa Park in Seville, is an ideal place to take pictures and rest a little.

Chapultepec Castle

Another iconic building you can't miss is Chapultepec Castle, which was built in 1785 and houses the National Museum of History where you can enjoy historical collections that include paintings, clothing, documents, photographs and other objects that represent the history of Mexico.

Here you can see the carriage of Carlota and Maximiliano that was the royal transport of the monarchy during the 19th century, this site also has impressive stained glass windows and stories that seem to be taken from a fairy tale. The entrance fee is around 4 €, but keep in mind that they are not open on Mondays. I recommend visiting on Sundays, as admission is free, or on Tuesdays and Saturdays to enjoy the train that departs from the forest to the castle.

House of Mirrors and Crystal Maze

If you want to have fun and live a different experience, I suggest you go through the House of Mirrors where you will see your reflection with distorted shapes, you can also go through the Crystal Maze which is colorful and challenges you to find the exit. This adventure is located in the first section of the forest and costs approximately 1 to 3 euros.

Nearby is the carousel, an ideal attraction for adults and children, as there is no age limit. The cost is around 2 €.

Chapultepec Lake

If you want to soak up some sun or have an unforgettable walk, Chapultepec Lake, located in the second section of the forest, is the place for you. I recommend you to live the experience of a bike tour, as well as feeding ducks or renting a boat to cross the water. You can opt for one with pedals or paddles and if you prefer a kayak, this plan goes for approximately 2 to 5 €.

You can also jog around the side or visit the Casa del Lago which always has exhibitions of painting, music or dance.

Water Garden Museum

To close the day I recommend entering the Water Garden Museum, located in the second section of the forest. This attraction has an approximate cost of 1 €. It has a peculiar architecture and monuments that perfectly represent the Mexican culture. This museum offers a variety of exhibits, murals and on the floor you will see a striking figure representing the Mexican God Tlaloc.

Another space inside this museum that you can't miss is the Lambdoma Chamber where the sound of water is transformed into a song through special effects.

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Day 2: Visit the Roma and Condesa neighborhoods

The Condesa| ©Kirk K
The Condesa| ©Kirk K

Near the Chapultepec area you can visit Roma and La Condesa, where Parque España and Parque México are located, as well as the Casa de las Brujas, the Chilango art street and some of Mexico City's best museums.

Spain Park

Right between the Condesa and Roma, Parque España is located near the horse racing track, better known as the Hipódromo de las Américas. Admission is free and you can access trails ideal for walking, jogging or biking. It also has striking sculptures and a children's play ground where the games are shaped like animals.

It is an ideal plan to include in your things to do during the summer in Mexico City, since there are many trees that cool the area and protect you from the sun. If you go early in the morning you can take advantage of the outdoor gym, but I recommend you go in a group. Throughout the park there is WiFi, bike areas and plugs to charge your cell phone.

Mexico Park

Very close to Parque España, you can access Parque México, which is completely free and is located twenty minutes from downtown. To make your tour take into account that it is divided into two sections, in the first there is a park for walking pets, the famous Clock Tower which is an ideal place to rest and many murals to take pictures.

Further on is the second section where there is a playground and a pond that you can go around or kayaking. Just across the divide between the two sections is Michoacán Street, where you can take a guided streetcar tour that also passes through Parque España.

For shows in the sun, stop by the open-air Coronel Lindbergh Theater, which has an oriental-style design and hosts a variety of events. To feed the ducks, head to the pond and have a picnic on the shore. Here you can enjoy completely free WiFi service.

Witches' House

If you want to visit a very peculiar place in La Roma go to Plaza Rio de Janeiro where there are striking monuments and important buildings such as the Casa de las Brujas (House of Witches) whose gothic structure simulates a witch's hat.

According to legend it is a haunted place, so it is ideal to visit during the activities to do in October in Mexico City, as they involve Halloween celebrations. The most popular legend assures that a witch named Pachita lived in the precinct between 1920 and 1960 and fulfilled favors to important public figures by performing rituals full of magic.

Roma Market

If you want to try the Mexican food proposals I suggest you schedule a gastronomic tour around the city or visit the Mercado Roma whose entrance is completely free. However, inside there are a variety of food stalls offering quality local products.

On the official website you can find out about the events they usually hold, one of the most famous ones corresponds to the things to do during May in the city, when they usually celebrate Margaret Thatcher Day with local drinks, such as mezcal, beer and wine, to commemorate the first woman who took office as a minister in London.

Museum of the MODO

The Museo del MODO or Museo del Objeto del Objeto is a cultural and historical space that operates in Mexico City, specifically in Roma Norte. What does it consist of? It exhibits objects or artifacts important to the history of the country for about 3 euros.

Chilango Street Art

If you decide to take a tour of Mexico City, you can have the opportunity to stroll through the Chilango street art, an urban project that has craft stores, graffiti and murals ideal for taking pictures. I recommend going there after 4:00 p.m. to take advantage of the cool breeze and have a snack in the area.

An excellent option for lunch is the Macelleria Roma, an Italian restaurant with a variety of gastronomic proposals.

Book a bus tour with free stops in Mexico City

Day 3: Enjoy the parks, canals and pulquerías in Xochimilco

Xochimilco| ©Anne and David
Xochimilco| ©Anne and David

One of the most popular areas in Mexico City is Xochimilco, known as the land of flowers. It is characterized by its lake area where you can take a boat ride through the canals and visit an ecological park.

The best time to visit Xochimilco is between spring and summer, also during the afternoon the area is cooler and the tourist influx is low, so you can get pictures without crowds.

Canals of Xochimilco

Xochimilco has a variety of piers that allow you to stroll through the canals and access attractions such as the Isla de las Muñecas (Island of the Dolls) where dolls hang and give a particular aesthetic that is ideal for taking pictures.

If you want to take a ride on a trajinera, the best option is to go to the Salitre pier where you can rent boats to cross the water in a very colorful transport, the approximate cost is 30 €. Its areas are ideal for meditation or a picnic.

Xochimilco Ecological Park

To get to this area I recommend you to opt for a bus tour with free stops, this way it will be easier to access the Xochimilco Ecological Park. This space has a variety of fauna and flora that must be respected during the visit, here you can also rent trajineras, ride on pedal boats, have a picnic, or take a tour on the train.


  • Park: Free admission.
  • Bicycles: For about €1 per hour.
  • Boats: For about €3 per hour.
  • Access to the restrooms: for at least €1.
  • Use of the parking lot: for about 2 €.

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Day 4: Get to know the quirky Zona Rosa and spend an afternoon at museums

Frida's house museum| ©Juan Carlos Fariña Zeairi
Frida's house museum| ©Juan Carlos Fariña Zeairi

After three days of quite hectic sightseeing, you will surely want a quiet plan. The Zona Rosa is a picturesque place, where every street will surprise you, as its name and attractions are inspired by cities around the world. Here you can spend most of the day exploring its alleys and stores. In the afternoon get ready for an afternoon at some of Mexico City's best museums.

World Cities

In the famous Zona Rosa are located peculiar streets that offer passages with stores, monuments and fun activities. This area stands out because its streets are named after cities of the world. The most famous are Copenhagen Street, London Street, Warsaw Street, Hamburg Street, Nice Street, Liverpool Street, Hamburg Street, Antwerp Street and Florence Street.

It is a commercial district full of artistic and cultural life, where you can walk for free or take a bike tour.

Book a bike tour in Mexico City!

Soumaya Museum and Frida Kahlo Museum

To enjoy galleries and art collections is the Soumaya Museum, estimated to have more than 60,000 Mexican and international works. Admission is free and the most outstanding works belong to Diego Rivera, Da Vinci and Van Gogh, among others. On the other hand, the Frida Kahlo Museum houses the life and works of the famous painter who revolutionized the artistic world for women. The entrance fee is around 2 €.

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Day 5: Tour the monuments of the Historic Center

Zocalo Square| ©Ari Helminen
Zocalo Square| ©Ari Helminen

The Historic Center is the heart of Mexico City and should not be missing in your itinerary. Visit the Plaza Zócalo, the Casa de los Azulejos and the Franz Mayer Museum.

Zócalo Square

To walk around the Zócalo square, where cultural and artistic activities take place, I recommend you prepare sporty and cool clothes, as there are also several places, such as the Metropolitan Cathedral whose facade is impressive, or the Alameda neighborhood which is ideal for buying souvenirs and handicrafts of Mexico.

House of Tiles

This is a colonial palace that stands out for its tile façade. It was built in 1524 and nowadays you can visit it for free, inside there is a restaurant and you can visit the area of the Tabasco History Museum for around 2 € where shows are performed and important objects for the history of Mexico are exhibited.

Franz Mayer Museum

The Franz Mayer Museum has been in operation since 1946 and is very important in Mexico City, for around 5 € you can visit its auditorium, historical closet, cafeterias, libraries and much more. Events are constantly taking place, some free and others at an additional cost.

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