Mexico City Diary
Mexico City has been on my list for ever, and I finally managed to make it in February this year. It was my first stop on a one moth tour through Mexico and it turned out to be my absolute highlight. I never heard so many opinions and warnings about any other city before and had a completely different experience. One of the most beautiful cities from an architectural point, incredible colors everywhere and don't let me get started about food. I'm going to try to write down every place that I would recommend but feel free to text me if you have any additional questions. To anyone who hasn't been, its an absolutely amazing place, super affordable and I would say you need at least one week rather two to get a feeling about the city.
July 15, 2019
Labels: On track, Sail the Seas
Cuadra San Cristóbal: This is a private mansion. You can not just go there and visit it but you will have to make an appointment online. I found the email address of the owner and asked her about visiting possibilities. During my time there they had about two time slots a week, and we could book relatively spontaneously. Arriving there we had about half an hour to just stroll around and look at everything, after that we met the owner, an incredibly sweet lady (daughter to the original family it was build for, basically Luis Barragán was a friend of her parents). She gave us a whole tour around the area, the stables and the backyard, told us stories about growing up there, how the place was designed and build and what part had what intention. Even if you don't know much about architecture, this was super interesting. After that we were allowed to stay as long as we wanted, take as many photos as we wanted (if not for commercial use) and it felt very easy going. We were a group of no more than 15 people that spread over this huge place so it felt very private. The price point is about 300 pesos (15 Euros) per person and you have to bring it cash. It was a little on the edge of Mexico City and took us an hour with the UBER to get there from the city center (the old town). This might seem long but as UBERS are super cheap we paid about 10 Euros for the drive and got to see a lot of things on our way there. To me Cuadra San Cristóbal was my absolute highlight while being in Mexico City an Mia as the host was a huge part of that. I would highly recommend visiting it.
Contact: (Mia Egerstrom) email@example.com
Address: (Cda. Manantial Ote. 20, Mayorazgos de los Gigantes, 52957 Cd López Mateos, Méx., Mexico)
Mia Egerstrom herself with a wild donkey she picked up and now nurtures at ther farm. He was only accesible while being fed with carrots, afterwards we had to get out. He had too much energy not to go wild with humans that he wanted to play with.
Another amazing piece of architecture is "Casa Luis Barragán". Here you have to book appointments a month ago due to high demand and I was obviously too late for that. I wanted to include it no matter what though as I think it looks incredible from the photos I saw on the web and I'm definitely trying to visit it next time I am in Mexico City.
Address: (Gral. Francisco Ramírez 12-14, Ampliación Daniel Garza, Amp Daniel Garza, 11840 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico)
"Casa Estudio Diego Rivera & Frida Kahlo" was another place on my list. It is not the house of Frida Kahlo but the house she lived in with her husband Diego Rivera for a while during their marriage. It also features almost none of her art, mainly his and some other artworks, but that was also not the reason I wanted to see it. I'm just mentioning it because I came across a few people who were disappointed they didn't see more Frida Kahlo related things. I mainly wanted to go because of the architecture itself. I love the structure, how the whole complex is build and obviously the colours. To me it was everything I wanted to see. You can come without an appointment have to pay a small entry fee (if I recall correctly, maybe it was also free) but you definitely have to pay a small amount if you want to take photos. Which was super fair as the place obviously needs constant staff and renovation. You can move freely but there are restrictions in terms of the artwork and how close you can get to things. Overall definitely worth the visit and far less crowded than Frida Kahlo's house.
Address: Diego Rivera s/n, San Ángel Inn, 01060 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
The Blue House (Frida Kahlo Museum): I haven't actually been there, but as it is on every 'Mexico City to-do' list, I'll at least provide you the address.
Address: Londres 247, Del Carmen, 04100 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Now getting to the important things in life... eating in Mexico City. I do choose destinations based on their cuisine and Mexico has been on my list for ages as there are hardly any good restaurants in Berlin, and I love Mexican food. So having to weeks in the capital, this meant food heaven to me. "Contramar" was a place we originally only walked past and the food on other people's table looks so delicious that I wrote it down to come back as soon as I could eat again. Later it was recommended to me by a lot of people for all the right reasons. There is a huge demand so you have to be flexible with time. We came at 11:00 for lunch and the could give us an 16:00 spot or a dinner reservation. We took dinner and went on a city tour in between but spontaneous visits are tricky. The waiters are super nice though and will help you with reservations (you can also make reservaitions online). Coming back later that day we had Tuna Tostadas as starters and the fish as a main (which were the two top sellers there). I had a lot of fish but this was definitely one of the best.
Address: Calle de Durango 200, Roma Nte., 06700 Cuauhtémoc, CDMX, Mexico
Tres Galeones: This little Taco place has mainly fish tacos but a few meat alternatives. It's in a super nice neighberhood (my fav. actually) and I love the vibe of the place. Small but with some of the best fish / sea food tacos I head during my stay in Mexico City. I think we went at least three times. Absolute fav. was the soft shell crab taco and the Horchata!
Address: Jalapa 117, Roma Nte., 06700 Cuauhtemoc, CDMX, Mexico
Los Parados: The ultimate, ultimate Taco place in Mexico City. Located on a corner, open basically the whole night (12pm - 5am), super cheap and seriously the best tacos! Very loca, not fancy but it serves the purpose and an all Spanish menu. What I did was look at pictures on foursquare and show them the one I wanted. They always new exactly which one it was. There are also no seating options but bars and pots of free Guacamole and salsa as much as you want. We always overdid it as I could never decide what I wanted as everything tasted amazing.
Address: Eje 2 Pte, Monterrey 333, Roma Sur, 06760 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
I think food in gerenal was my personal highlight in Mexico City, so it was nearly impossible to pick my favourite restaurants, but Lardo was number one on this endless list. Every second day I tried to convice my boyfriend to go there again... and for the other days I wanted to go the partner restaurant 'Rosetta' or the Cafes 'Panderia Rosetta'. All lead by a female chef who makes exactly the food I would like to eat for the rest of my life. Lardo offers breakfast, lunch, dinner and everything in between 8am - 10:45pm. I only tested breafast and lunch though. You basically order many little things and share them among friends. My ultimate highlight was the pizza with figs, the mango salad and a fish dish with orange sauche that already disappered from the menue the second time we were there, so don't bother listening to my tips just try to order everything once.
Address: Agustín Melgar 6, Colonia Condesa, 06140 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
As already mentioned Lardo has a partner restaurant, a little more Italian style and a bit higher priced (yet still completely worth every dime). Rosetta is in the same neighborhood, in a beautiful building, with skylights, a little indoor garden and just beautiful interior. You definitely have to reserve a table if you want to come for dinner. For lunch it's usually easier. Also worth mentioning is the Panderia Rosetta. That is a little cafe (two by now actually) that belongs to the restaurant, is in the same street and serves the most amazing baked goods. I think I never had a better tomatoes-mozzarella sandwich. Seriously.
Address: Colima 166, Roma Nte., 06700 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Last but not least on my food list is Delirio. A cafe/restaurant/delicatessen shop ... basically whatever you want it to be. More for a little snack than a full meal but with an open counter that has a lot to offer especially during lunch hours. There are a couple of them and they usually have outdoor seating and just a really cozy vibe to them. The one we usually went to is listed below. My favourite dish was the baiser-berry desert, incredible!
Address: Monterrey 116, Roma Nte., 06700 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
When I did my research on places in Mexico City I came across a certain pink wall or gate several times. Loving the architecture I wondered where and what it is, until I found it to be the Camino Real Polanco hotel. (Be aware, there are two in Mexico City... it's the one that's not at the airport). Designed by Ricardo Legoretta it also features a yellow part and a turquoise fountain right in front of it. Apparently he was inspired by no one else than Luis Barragan and also responsible for designing the parc in downtown LA. I seem to have a thing for Mexican architecture and it has probably something to do with colour.
Address: Calz. Gral. Mariano Escobedo No. 700, Anzures, 11590 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
As I spend most of my time between the areas of La Condesa & Roma I also came across several parks, my favourite being Parque Mexico. Beautiful fountains, loads of little benches surrounded by bushes and flours where you see loads of couples. It couldn't be more cheesy, but it's also just really beautiful. On one end there is a big cemented area where people skate, play soccer or just hang out and watch. Here is also where you can get last rays of sunshine and buy delicious snacks once you leave.
Address: Av México 19, Hipódromo Condesa, 06100 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
During my stay in Mexico City I lived down town, about 10 minutes walking distance away from Zócalo (the main square in Mexico City). Everything was reachable, everything felt super safe, not too many tourists and UBERS are so cheap that if we didn't walk to Roma or La Condesa it would cost you about 3-4 Euros to drive their by car. I wouldn't say down town is the most beautiful part of Mexico City but it definitely feels more local and real than some of the other areas I mentioned. I really loved staying there and would definitely recommend it.
Address: Plaza de la Constitución S/N, Centro Histórico de la Cdad. de México, Centro, 06010 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
"Parque Lineal Ferrocarriles de Cuernavaca" is Mexico City's way of converting some of the city’s old train lines into public-linear park. You can walk for hours following it and it will lead you through half the city without exposing you to much traffic. A really beautiful way of using these old tracks. There are also plenty of little activities build along the linear park such as open air gyms, skate parks, restaurants, benches, art centers etc. We walked until we reached the "Soumaya museum", which is definitely worth seeing at least from the outside (it was closed by the time we arrived).
Address: Blvd. Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra 303, Granada, 11529 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
There are museums and there are museums. I love anything to do with modern art, photography, science, space etc. I am not the biggest fan sculptures, stones that have meanings, old artifacts or renaissance paintings (especially not religious ones). But everyone kept recommending "The National Museum of Anthropology" so I had to at least give it a try. It's considered one of the world's most comprehensive natural history museums and it has four square kilometers of exhibits in 23 exhibition halls. Let me say... you need more than the 6 hours we had scheduled for it, at least if you really want to read through some of the things. It's not 100% my thing but I think for anyone interested in the history of Native Americans or the area of Mexico itself, it's worth it. I also really loved to see the building itself.
Address: Av. Paseo de la Reforma s/n, Polanco, Bosque de Chapultepec I Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico