Culture

Lost in Mexico City

A travel guide for the curious. Explore the best places to eat, drink, sleep, be in Nature and play in the vibrant Mexico City.

Lost in Mexico City

Teeming with life, motion, commotion, peace, smells, sounds, Mexico City has a vibrancy impossible to capture with only words. When you’re here, you can feel a creative energy coursing through the air. Maybe it stems from the deep connection to the country’s rich craft culture, where each region has its own specialty artisanal craft, music, and food. Maybe the feeling is the rhythm that emerges from the chaos inherent to the city of nearly 21 million. Whatever it is contributing to this magic, we know the curious minds and adventurous hearts out there will love Mexico City as much as we do.

View and save our full guide as a Google Map here.

Before visiting, we must remind you to please be mindful of water consumption. Mexico has been and continues to exist in a dire water crisis that tourists are mostly shielded from within hospitality spaces. If you’re able, we recommend a donation to local nonprofit Isla Urbana to support their mission of expanding access to clean water in Mexico through rainwater harvesting. (The Lost Explorer Mezcal works with Isla Urbana every year to install and maintain rainwater harvesting systems in Oaxaca; learn more about our meaningful partnership here.)

EAT  |  DRINK  |  STAY  |  SEE / LEARN  |  SHOP  |  BE IN NATURE

 

To Eat

Photo: Lily Wan.

Expendio de Maiz

Roma Norte

expendiodemaiz.com
@exp_maiz

There is something so special about Expendio de Maíz that you simply must go to to experience. But we’ll try to share here: The four-table outdoor restaurant celebrating all things corn gives you the luxury of making no choices, and in turn, asking for your complete trust. Simply tell your server any dietary restrictions and enjoy each course as it comes out of the open-air kitchen. In your last few bites, your server will ask if you want the next course. It’ll be hard to say no.

 

Photos: Hane Garza @hanegarza, courtesy Taquería Orinoco.

Taquería Orinoco

Roma Norte, Del Valle, San Jerónimo, Polanco, Condesa, Zona Rosa

taqueriaorinoco.com
@taqueriaorinoco

This cult-favorite taco shop in La Roma is a must-visit spot for anyone craving authentic Mexican tacos. Open late into the night, Tacos Orinocos serves a core menu of tacos with a rainbow of salsa options, beautifully crisped potatoes, some aguas frescas, and a popsicle. What more could you ask for?

 

Photo: Alejandro Yanes, courtesy Makan.

Makan

Roma Norte

makan.mx
@makanmx_

Head to this tucked-away singaporean restaurant for big flavors, a great wine list, and a lively nighttime vibe set in a lush garden.

 

Photo: Bertha Herrera, courtesy El Cardenal.

El Cardenal

Centro Histórico

restauranteelcardenal.com
@restaurante_el_cardenal

El Cardenal is a local institution. A block away from Zocalo in the historic center, this classic establishment opened in 1969 and is one of the best Mexican breakfasts in the city. Try a fresh Concha with a side of nata (clotted cream) for starters.

 

Mi Compa Chava

Roma, Coyoacán

@micompachava

A lunch at Mi Compa Chava will feel like you’ve made a day trip to a vibrant beach town for a day of crisp, cold micheladas, the freshest seafood, and sun-soaked fun. Or at least you can pretend. Ask for The Lost Explorer Mezcal to pair perfectly with your coastal cravings. And bring your friends, but prepare to wait a bit—it’s quite popular.

 

Masala y Maíz

Juárez

masalaymaiz.com
@masalaymaiz

Masala y Maíz explores the migration of people, ingredients, techniques, and political movements of East Africa, Mexico, and South Asia through food—very good food at that. Let husband-and-wife chef duo Norma and Saqib treat you to inventive flavor combinations and an exciting and extensive natural wine list.

 

Photo: Karla Ximena Cerón, courtesy Marmota.

Marmota

Roma Norte

marmota.mx
@marmota_mx

A homey spot overlooking the beautiful Plaza Río de Janeiro, Marmota brings a taste of the Pacific Northwest to Mexico.The menu is focused on wild-caught seafood and farm-fresh produce, plus an amazing cocktail selection. Ask for The Lost Explorer Espadín Mezcal in any of your mezcal cocktails, or try our Tobalá or Salmiana mezcals for sipping with your meal.

 

Photo courtesy TETETLÁN.

Tetetlán

Coyoacan

@tetetlan

Not only is the food at Tetetlán first rate, the restaurant was originally the horse stables of a home designed by the hugely influential Mexican architect, Luis Barragán. Art and design nerds and foodies alike will go wild over this spot—it’s well worth the trip to Coyoacan.

 

To Drink

Photo: Sergio Lopez, courtesy Cafe de Nadie.

Café de nadie

Roma

cafedenadie.mx
@cafe.denadie

A listening bar with an excellent sound system and imaginative cocktails. Try any of the Lost Explorer Mezcal expressions here as well.

 

Photo courtesy Limantour.

Licoreria Limantour

Roma Norte

limantour.tv
@limantourmx

Number 4 on the list of the World’s 50 Best Bars, Limantour is known for its craft cocktails. Let your curiosity lead you to one on-menu, such as the smoky pineapple-forward Vicuña, made with The Lost Explorer Mezcal, or as the bartender to create you something custom.

 

Photo courtesy Elly’s.

Elly’s

Juárez

ellysmx.com
@ellysmx

A cocktail bar and restaurant serving delicious vaguely mediterranean cuisine in an airy 1930s Bauhaus-style home. Order The Lost Explorer Mezcal in a cocktail or to sip neat.

 

Photo courtesy Balcón del Zócalo.

Balcón del Zócalo

Centro Histórico

balcondelzocalo.com
@balcondelzocalo

A unique view of the historic Zócalo makes for the perfect backdrop for a sunset mezcalito at this upscale Mexican restaurant. Order any of the Lost Explorer Mezcal to keep the palate entertained.

 

Photo courtesy Hanky Panky.

Hanky Panky

Juárez

hankypanky.mx
@hankypankydf

A speakeasy serving up world-class craft cocktails (pro tip: Upgrade your mezcal cocktail by choosing it made with The Lost Explorer Espadín). Reservations encouraged.

 

Photo courtesy Rayo.

Rayo

Roma Norte

rayococktailbar.com
@rayocdmx

At Rayo, craft cocktails are made especially with premium spirits from Mexico (like us 🙋) and beyond. Get lost in conversation with one of the very knowledgeable bartenders here as you sip.

 

Photo courtesy Bodega 94.

Bodega 94

Cuauhtémoc

bodega94.com
@bodega94_

A hidden gem, this cocktail bar is the perfect place to stop for a pre- or post-dinner mezcal, or settle in for an evening of craft cocktail exploration: cozy, nice menu of bites, and creative bartenders.

 

Photo courtesy Casa Prunes.

Casa Prunes

Roma Norte

@casaprunes

A cocktail bar and restaurant set in a beautiful Art Nouveau–style mansion. In addition to a cocktail menu centering on adventurous takes on classics, Casa Prunes also offers a selection of wines fermented in-house, and an impressive collection of Mexican spirits (including yours truly 🙋).

 

Photo: @elconocedormx, courtesy ololo.

Ololo speakeasy

Hipódromo Condesa

@ololo.condesa

This speakeasy is a total vibe. In a cozy and velvety interior, you’ll be served craft cocktails that creatively blend Mexican spirits with flavors from around the globe. Ask the bartenders to make you something special with The Lost Explorer Espadín Mezcal. Thursday through Saturday, they have a DJ in the evenings.

 

Photo courtesy Cafe Ocampo.

Cafe Ocampo

Cuauhtémoc

@cafe.ocampo

A neighborhood favorite, Cafe Ocampo is known for its great drinks and good crowd. Their mezcal and amaro menu’s worth a shout-out, and their espresso drinks are top notch as well.

 

To Stay

Photo: Undine Pröhl, courtesy Grupo Habita.

Downtown Mexico

Centro Histórico

downtownmexico.com
@grupohabita

Making home in a 17th-century manor, Downtown Mexico hotel is a modern oasis in the middle of a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the bustling Centro. Plus, it’s got a pool and rooftop terrace for all the sun-soaking one desires.

 

Casa Bosques Pensión

Roma Norte

casabosquespension.com
@casabosquespension

This subdued three-room guest house is tucked away in a quiet corner of La Roma and behind the beloved Casa Bosques book shop. Travelers looking for a more private and low-key homebase during their stay will love this design-minded space. Perk: unlimited book exploration!

 

Photo: Undine Pröhl, courtesy Grupo Habita.

Condesa DF

Condesa

condesadf.com
@grupohabita

This luxury hotel is located in the trendy Condesa neighborhood and features modern rooms, a rooftop pool and bar, and is close to dozens of great restaurant options for morning, noon, and night.

 

Photo: Leandro Bulzzano, courtesy Ignacia Guest House.

Ignacia Guest House

Roma

ignacia.mx
@ignaciamx

Nestled in the heart of the vibrant Roma neighborhood, Ignacia Guest House exudes bohemian charm with its colorful, eclectic decor and laid-back atmosphere. Unwind in one of the property’s cozy, tastefully color-saturated rooms or seek respite in the lush private courtyard or common areas flaunting Mexican design and craft.

 

Photos: Sergio López, courtesy Grupo Habita.

Circulo Mexicano

Centro Histórico

circulomexicano.com
@grupohabita

Located in the historic center of Mexico City, Circulo Mexicano offers a unique blend of old-world elegance and contemporary design with the shaker-style interiors of this 19th-century mansion. A rooftop terrace with a small pool makes for a great escape to take in views of the Catedral Metropolitana across the street.

 

Photo courtesy Namron Hospitality.

La Valise

Roma Norte

www.lavalisecdmx.com
@lavalisemexico

At La Valise, located in a charming 20th-century French-style building in La Roma, try to book the Terrace Suite where you can slide the bed onto a spacious terrace and gaze at the clouds (or stars) in the crisp air of Mexico City.

 

To See / To Learn

Photo: Maciej Cisowski.

Pirámides de Teotihuacán

San Juan Teotihuacán, State of Mexico

These ancient pyramids near Mexico City are worth a day trip to see the third-largest pyramid in the world, the Pyramid of the Sun, measuring over 200 feet tall.

 

Photos: Lily Wan.

Museo Frida Kahlo

Coyoacán

museofridakahlo.org.mx
@museofridakahlo

The famous cobalt blue campus that housed the beautiful creative life of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Spending time here is an illuminating look into the mind of one of Mexico’s national treasures, dear Frida. Personal objects, artwork, tools, furniture, portraits … there is so much incredibly preserved material here to help you understand the artist.

Casa Luis Barragan

www.casaluisbarragan.org
@casaluisbarragan

Book a tour of the stunning home of the renowned Mexican architect and see how he designed his most intimate spaces. Visitors will come away not only with the sights, but a closer understanding of how he saw the world.

 

Museo Nacional de Antropología

Polanco

mna.inah.gob.mx
@mnantropologia

You could spend days getting lost in here—and we’d recommend it. Explore the world’s largest collection of ancient Mexican art, in chronological order. The institution also offers amazing ethnographic exhibitions on present-day indigenous groups.

 

Photo courtesy Fonoteca Nacional.

Fonoteca Nacional (sound archives/museum)

Coyoacán

fonotecanacional.gob.mx
@fonotecanacional

There’s not much to see here—but come with curious ears. Fonteca Nacional is dedicated to preserving and sharing the sounds of Mexico and promoting a culture of listening. The museum also has a gorgeous garden perfect for a small rest amid your day strolling Coyoacan.

 

Photo: Lily Wan.

Museo Mural Diego Rivera

Centro Histórico

museomuraldiegorivera.inba.gob.mx
@museomuraldiegorivera

This museum’s main attraction is the impeccably kept mural by Diego Rivera “Sueño de una Tarde Dominical en la Alameda Central” (1946-47). Spanning 15 meters wide, the mural has many hidden gems and histories, which explanatory charts in the museum map out.

 

Mercado Abelardo L. Rodriguez

Centro Histórico

Website
View map

Stroll through this market to see the 1,450 sq. m. of walls and ceiling covered in murals painted by students of Diego Rivera, under his supervision. Plus, don’t miss the massive wall sculpture “History of Mexico” by Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi.

 

Photo courtesy Gran Hotel Ciudad de México.

Gran Hotel de la Ciudad de México

Centro Histórico

granhoteldelaciudaddemexico.com.mx
@granhotelcdmx

Stop by the historic Gran Hotel to see the jaw-dropping Tiffany style stained glass ceiling—one of the four largest in the world!—made by French artist Jacques Gruber in 1908.

 

To Shop

Photo: Lily Wan.

Casa Bosques

Roma Norte

casabosques.net
@casabosques

A very well curated bookstore filled with Spanish and English independent publications, art books, and beyond. The associated and eponymous chocolate project also presents many of its adventurous flavors of premium chocolate here.

 

Lagunilla Antiques Market

Centro Histórico

View map

A visit to Lagunilla is a must for the curious. Grab an extra-large michelada and stroll around the many stalls selling antiques, vintage clothing, furniture, art objects, and weird tiny things you didn’t know you needed until you saw them. The market is only open Sundays; we recommend getting there early and keeping your wallet/bag close to you (it can get a little crowded).

 

Mercado Artesanal Mexicano

Coyoacán

View map

Hundreds of merchants gather here every day to sell handcrafted art and souvenirs, making it a great place to pick up gifts or just stroll through for the ambiance and visual excitement during a day exploring Coyoacan.

 

Photo: Daniel Patlán.

Mercado San Juan

Centro Histórico

Buy typical mexican food
View map

This one’s for the foodies out there. Visit this fresh food market to explore local delicacies, snacks, and fresh produce. As with all markets, keep your belongings close to you.

 

Mercado de Artesanías La Ciudadela

Centro Histórico

View map

La Ciudadela is a charming, low-key artisan market in the historic Center. Hundreds of vendors offer handcrafts and folk art from different regions of Mexico—pottery from Puebla, silver jewelry from Zacatecas, local textiles and leather goods…the list goes on.

 

To Be in Nature

Photo: Lily Wan.

Parque Ecológico Xochimilco

Xochimilco

View map

Some of the last remnants of the Aztec empire, the Xochilmilco water canals are what remain from what used to be a much wider network of canals established in the 16th century for water transport and farming. Gaze at these floating farms from the comfort of a humble boat you can charter. Or seek out one of a sunrise tour for the most epic views against a soundtrack of an ecosystem awakening.

 

Photo: Robert Lozano.

Bosque de Chapultepec

procesodeconsultachapultepec.mx
View map

If you’re craving a long walk in nature during your trip, stop by Bosque de Chapultepec and stroll through the most important “lung” of Mexico City—and one of the largest city parks in the world. Also located within the park and worth a visit are the historically preserved presidential residence Castillo de Chapultepec, Museo Tamayo contemporary art museum, and the Museo Nacional de Antropología.

 

Parque España

Condesa

View map

A great spot for dog watching, winding snacking strolls, and enjoying being around people living life.

 

Viveros de Coyoacán

Coyoacán

View map

A mystical urban national park and tree nursery originally founded in the early 20th century to nurture seedlings to help with reforestation efforts for the damaged forests surrounding Mexico City. There is a beautifully maintained walking/running trail that encircles and winds through the park. Great place to soak up nature in the city.

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