Mexico City's fascinating history - ancient to contemporary - comes to life at dozens of sites across the capital city. To visit them all would take a year, and few of us have the luxury of a visit that long. But a traveler to D.F. can see the highlights in one week: just follow this list of the Top 10 Historical Things to Do in Mexico City.
#1 on any historian's list is El Zocalo
, Mexico City's main square. The wide plaza dates back to the days of the Aztecs when it would the center of their empire's capital, Tenochtitlan. Spanish conquistadors destroyed the palaces and temples that once stood here in the battles to conquer Montezuma and built their own monuments, including #4, the Metropolitan Cathedral.
The Teotihuacan pyramids come in at #2
, if only because they require a day trip from Mexico City. The culture that built the massive temples of the Sun and the Moon were were one of Mesoamerica's ur
-cultures. Despite leaving these impressive structures archeologists still don't fully understand the culture or why it collapsed.
#5 on this list is Chapultepec Castle
, formerly the home of the ill-fated duo, Emperor Maximiliano and Empress Carlota. Convinced to take the throne of a new empire in the 1860s, the Hapsburg Maximiliano lasted only three years before being executed by a firing squad. The castle displays their living quarters, still lavishly appointed with European furniture.
The Plaza de las Tres Culturas, #10
, brings together three key periods in Mexican history: Aztec, Spanish colonial, and the turbulent 1960s.
16 de Septiembre y 5 de Mayo
Carretera México Teotihuacan Km. 46
Zona Arqueológica de Teotihuacan
The most visited pyramids in Mexico... read more
Archaeological Artifacts and more... read more
The zócalo, on Cinco de Mayo, Centro Histórico
Bosque de Chapultepec 1a Sección
Paseo de la Reforma y Calzada Ghandi
Colonia Polanco Chapultepec
All of the pre-hispanic cultures under one roof...
Calzada de los Misterios y Paseo Zumárraga
Gustavo A. Madero
Avenida Juárez y la Fragua
Plaza de la República
Paseo de la Reforma y Florencia
Cura Hidalgo's Skull & The Remains of Heroes...
Eje Central esquina Eje Uno Norte
Pre-Hispanic, Colonial & Present Day... read more