Mexico’s capital, the country’s cultural and political center, has much to offer to travelers. Although you won’t find beaches and relaxation by the sea. Instead, high-altitude nicest day trips to take from mexico city have great museums, fascinating monuments, and some culinary highlights. The cosmopolitan and modern city grants you numerous opportunities for leisure. But it is also worthwhile to look beyond the city limits. There are many places in the surrounding area that are ideal for day trips from Mexico City or to even spending some days in one of the hotels in Queretaro Mexico.
Teotihuacán is the city of the gods and one of the first addresses for a day trip from Mexico City. The most famous Mesoamerican site near the capital was inhabited by the Aztecs from the 13th century onwards, although there is some debate as to who actually built it. The Pyramid of the Sun is the third-largest in the world and can be climbed.
From its top, you can take some spectacular shots of the pyramid complex and surrounding landscape. Teotihuacán is located about 50 km northeast of Mexico City. The best way to get to the archaeological site is by bus from Terminal Norte in Mexico City. There are several museums on-site, as well as water, snacks, and souvenirs. However, be sure to wear sunscreen and a hat, as well as comfortable walking shoes.
Querétaro is a small state in central Mexico. It takes only three hours to get from Mexico City to the booming capital Querétaro. The cityscape is dominated by an impressive aqueduct. The city center has retained much of its tranquil character. Flowery plazas, magnificent aristocratic palaces, historic monasteries and a high density of churches characterize the colonial center of Querétaro as well as the well-kept fountains and parks.
The traffic-calmed center with its narrow cobbled streets and the long pedestrian zone, which connects several plazas, makes the city immensely attractive for strolling. In the evening you can enjoy the cheerful, relaxed atmosphere of Querétaro on its many squares in stylish cafes and restaurants.
San Miguel de Allende
Although the city of San Miguel de Allende is located about 270 kilometers northwest of Mexico City, it is worth taking the time to explore it – may be on a weekend trip from the Mexican capital. San Miguel de Allende is without a doubt one of the most beautiful places in Mexico. Perched on a hill, this colonial town is well worth a longer stay to really check out the appealing old-styled houses with their terraces and gardens hidden behind simple facades.
In addition to the charming townscape, the beautiful surroundings and pleasant climate have attracted many immigrants, resulting in the city becoming a center of intellectual and artistic life. A highlight is an exquisite church El Oratorio de San Felipe Neri. Created in 1712, the building shows its indigenous characteristics in the pink stone facade, especially in the five statues of saints placed in the niches.
Xochimilco (Mexico City Boats)
On the outskirts of Mexico City is the canal system of Xochimilco, the floating gardens of the Aztecs, where you can escape the urban jungle with a leisurely boat ride in a richly decorated “trajinera”. The canal system of Xochimilco was formed in the 14th century by the creation of floating gardens, and chinampas, where the indigenous population grew fruits, vegetables, and flowers.
Thus, over the years, part of Lake Texcoco formed a network of canals. Since the Aztecs built their capital city of Tenochtitlán on a marshy area, these floating gardens of Xochimilco were the agricultural mainstay of the empire. An estimated 180 kilometers of these waterways still exist today, and some of the chinampas are still cultivated with flowers. The floating gardens of Xochimilco are protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Puebla de los Ángeles or Heroica Puebla de Zaragoza or simply Puebla, is referred to by locals as the “City of Angels”. It is one of the largest settlements in Mexico. It is about 130 km east of Mexico City, located on a plateau at about 2200 m and framed by mighty volcanoes.
Puebla has preserved the attributes of a colonial city, with a huge main square, big houses of worship, and historic villas. Particularly noteworthy are the Plaza de Armas, the Cathedral, and the Church of Santo Domingo. Whether for shopping or getting a delicious traditional meal from a street vendor or restaurant, the city is worth a visit.
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Although Morelia is 290 kilometers west of Mexico City, it’s worth spending at least a day here if you’re looking for fine examples of early Spanish colonial architecture. The city was founded in 1541 on the banks of the Rio Grande de Morelia and has managed to retain its distinctive Spanish colonial character over the centuries. Kicking off your day trip from Mexico City is the beautiful main square, Plaza de los Mártires.
Perched on the east side is the magnificent 17th-century Baroque-style cathedral, built of pinkish-brown trachyte. Inside, there are also some remarkable elements, including the neoclassical retablier, and the silver baptismal font. This neoclassical retabilar is a crucifix by Manuel Tolsá, an imposing organ, and a series of paintings in the chancel and sacristy. In Morelia, the nearby Clavijero Palace, built-in 1660, and one of the last preserved aqueducts in the country, is also of special importance and definitely worth a trip from the capital.
Conclusion – Day Trips from Mexico City Are Worth It
While there is almost too much to see and do in Mexico City to keep even the most active tourist busy, it can be an overwhelming place at times. Planning a day trip or even short excursions outside of the city can be a great way to experience more of Mexico’s fascinating cultural landscape while taking a break from the hustle and bustle of the city.