Last Updated on February 22, 2023 by Nellie Huang
Are you looking for places to visit near Mexico City? Having spent lots of time exploring Mexico city and its outer vicinity, I’ve curated this list of best day trips from Mexico City.
Right smack in the very center of Mexico lies the sprawling, mega metropolis: Mexico City also known as CDMX (Ciudad de Mexico). Those who aren’t big on urban pursuits will be glad to know there’s a wide spectrum of day trip options ranging from mountain hikes to hot spring dips, from volcano treks to getting lost in pueblos magicos (magical towns).
CDMX is one of the biggest cities on Earth, so getting out for the day almost feels like you’re visiting another country. Its location in the heart of Mexico also means you can head off in any direction and see ancient Mayan pyramids, colonial towns, and even wildlife reserves, in less than two hour’s drive.
From the Michoacan monarch butterfly reserves to the firefly forests in Valle de Bravo, the colonial towns of Taxco to the Iztaccihuatl Volcano, here are our selections of the best day trips from Mexico City!
Table of Contents
- Best Day Trips from Mexico City
- Mexico City Day Trips: 1+ Hour Away
- 1. See the Teotihuacan Pyramids
- 2. Go on a Boat in Xochimilco
- Mexico City Travel Guide: Practical Resources
- 3. Climb Cerro Ajusco
- 4. Explore the City of Toluca
- 5. Wander around Cuernavaca
- 6. Feast in Pachuca de Soto
- Mexico Travel Requirements
- 7. See the Tula Ruins
- 8. Visit the Mining Town, Mineral de Monte
- 9. Experience the Magic of Tepoztlán
- Mexico city Day Trips: 2+ Hours Away
- Mexico city Day Trips: 3+ Hours Away
Best Day Trips from Mexico City
I’ve handpicked 22 of the best day trips from Mexico City and listed them in the order of how far they are, starting with the nearest day trip. I also included how to get to each place using public transport or in some cases, on day tours.
Mexico City Day Trips: 1+ Hour Away
1. See the Teotihuacan Pyramids
- Travel time: 1 hour
- Price: Entrance is 80 MXN (US$4) for adults and free for children under 13 years old
- How to get there: Make your way to México Central Norte then from there get the bus from terminal 2 to Teotihuacan. Alternatively, take an Uber for around US$40/way or book an early-access tour that includes transfers.
The Teotihuacan Pyramids are at the #1 spot, and rightfully so because it’s one of the most impressive historical sites in Mexico. At just 1 hour outside Mexico City, Teotihuacan is surprisingly easy to visit on your own. Read my guide on visiting Teotihuacan.
The ancient site is home to the Pyramid of the Sun, one of the largest pyramids in Mesoamerica – and you can actually climb it! When you reach the top, the panoramic views of the Valley of Mexico are breathtaking. Other spots worth exploring are the mysterious Pyramid of Moon, and the forgotten Temple of Quetzalcoatl.
I went on a hot air balloon flight over Teotihuacan, it was one of the best travel experiences I’ve had in Mexico. The tour ($137) included transportation from Mexico City, admission to Teotihuacan, an English-speaking guide, and a hot air balloon ride over the pyramids. Definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience!
Top Things to do in Teotihuacan
Climb the Pyramids
From the top of the pyramids, you’ll see a panoramic view of the Teotihuacan complex. The Pyramid of the Sun gives a stunning view of the Avenue of the Dead. Climbing up the steep steps got my heart beating out of my chest, but it’s worth the effort.
Visit the Museums
I highly recommend making time to visit the museums, which are actually easy to miss. They have interesting exhibits and informative explanations, along with air conditioning, which can be a godsend on hot days. The Teotihuacan Cultural Museum (next to Gate 5) displays more than 600 artifacts found in the archaeological site.
Check Out the Palace of the Jaguars
Believed to be a meeting spot during the Teotihuacan civilization, this stone-built structure is home to many ancient mural art. Due to its location next to the Pyramid of the Moon, it’s said to be the most sacred place in Teotihuacan.
💡 TIP: After visiting Teotihuacan your stomach should be rumbling from all that walking. So be sure to stop off at La Gruta Restaurant for an unforgettable meal in a cave.
2. Go on a Boat in Xochimilco
- Travel time: 1 hour
- Price: Boats range from 200-400 MXN/US$10-20 per hour
- How to get there: Head to Pino Suárez station and catch the train south to Tasquena. From here you can jump on the tram which takes you into the center of Xochimilco. Alternatively, book a tour that includes Xochimilco.
Located just an hour to the south, this is the second closest day trip from Mexico City. Xochimilco is Mexico’s answer to Venice, a city made up of ancient canals. The remnants of an Aztec transportation system, the Xochimilco canals are best explored by boat.
Colorful, traditional wooden boats called trajineras plow the waterways, bringing tourists into the water channels and past floating islands. You’ll often be serenaded by a mariachi band as you float down the canals. There are also vendors selling steaming tamales and giant jugs of beers on the boats. It’s all very carnival-like, with a fiesta atmosphere!
💡 TIP: The boat vendors will try to overcharge you by saying the price is per person. It is not. It is per boat. Make sure to book at the official ticket office.
Mexico City Travel Guide: Practical Resources
- ✈️ Book affordable flights to Mexico City on Skyscanner for $200+
- >🛏️ Read our guide on the best places to stay in Mexico City
- 🚗 Rent a car from Mexico City Airport on Discover Cars
- 🚌 Reserve bus tickets from Mexico City on Bookaway for the best rates
- >🛏️ Read our guide on the best museums in Mexico City
- 📷 Book your day tours from Mexico City on Viator or GetYourGuide
3. Climb Cerro Ajusco
- Travel time: 1:15 hours
- How to get there: This half-day tour includes transfers and a guide. Otherwise, jump on the train from Balderas and get off at Universidad. Then hail a cab to reach the start of the trail. It’ll cost around $200MXN/$10USD for the taxi journey each way.
With a steep climb of over 12,890 feet (3,900m), this day hike is an excellent day trip from Mexico City for avid hikers and the outdoorsy types. The lava domed Cerro Ajusco is part of Parque Nacional Cumbres del Ajusco and the national park is crisscrossed with hiking trails and off-road biking paths.
One of the highest points on the Ajusco Volcano is the Pico de Aguila (Eagle Peak), a summit you can reach in approximately 2 hours. The trailhead starts at the Abrevadero restaurant and from here, it’s a steady uphill hike to the summit. The views from the top are incredible and on a clear day, you’ll get a perennial view of Mexico City. Follow the hiking route here.
💡 TIP: Make sure to wear sunscreen and take plenty of water as there is very little shade on the hike up. Avoid hiking alone for safety reasons.
4. Explore the City of Toluca
- Travel time: 1:20 hours
- Price: Book a tour from Mexico City for 2,350 MXN/US$115
- How to get there: Catch a bus from the Observatorio or Cuatro Caminos stations in Mexico City. The ride costs around 100-150 MXN/US$5-$7.50 and takes 1 hour.
Toluca is the capital of Mexico state, and it’s brimming with both historical sites and modern culture. Much of the colonial architecture of the city still stands so it’s worth having a walk along the city’s streets to get your bearings and admire the buildings.
Toluca was founded by the Matlatzincas and some of the preclassical structures built during this era still stand. A short distance from the center are the Calixtlahuaca ruins. The large ancient city was a powerful political capital before being conquered by the Mexica or Aztec empire in 1478
After exploring the ruins, make sure to try Toluca’s famous carnitas (slow-cooked pork) dishes. Some of the meat cuts are pretty unusual, but if you’re open to testing new textures, then try the pork intestines. I tried a pig snout taco here too; not something I plan on trying again if I’m being honest.
- Travel time: 1:30 hours
- Price: Book a day tour for 1,000 MXN (US$50)
- How to get there: Head to Tasquena & San Lázaro stations in Mexico City to get a bus to Cuernavaca. The bus takes around 1 hour and drops you off outside Cuernavaca Casino. It’s about 200 MXN/US$10 each way.
Known for its year-round warm weather, Cuernavaca is popular spot for Chilangos (as locals from Mexico City are affectionately called) on the weekends. There are plenty of things to do here including visiting the Palacio de Cortes, strolling through the Jardin Borda, or exploring one of the many nearby ancient ruins such as Xochicalco.
It’s easy to get from Mexico City to Cuernavaca and you can easily combine the day trip with a visit to Taxco and a mining town. We booked this day tour and were really happy with our guide. We were the only foreigners (the rest were Mexicans) and that felt special!
The city is eclipsed by the Tepozteco Mountains, just a short drive outside of the city. The hiking trails are perfect for those looking to immerse in nature.
6. Feast in Pachuca de Soto
- Travel time: 1:35 hours
- Price: Book a private transfer to Pachuca for 1,300 MXN (US$65)
- How to get there: From the Mexico City North station, you can take a bus directly to Pachuca de Soto. It costs about $160MXN/$8USD.
This is one of the best Mexico City day trips for foodies! Pachuca de Soto is a city located in the state of Hidalgo, just under two hours from Mexico City. It’s known for its colonial architecture and beautiful churches, but most importantly, traditional Mexican food.
Pachuca de Soto is famous for its chiles en nogada (stuffed poblano peppers in a creamy walnut sauce). Widely known as the national dish of Mexico, chiles en nogada is such a special treat, because it’s prepared with seasonal ingredients such as walnuts and pomegranate. It’s only available at the end of summer (August and September). Many of the local eateries serve this food, but my favorite is Mina La Blanca Restaurant.
I recommend combining this day trip with a visit to the Real de Monte and Pachuca. They are all the jewels of Hidalgo and make for a diverse Mexico City day trip that combines nature with culture and history.
Mexico Travel Requirements
- Mexico City has no travel restrictions, and there’s no need for proof of vaccine or PCR tests on the plane.
- However, I always recommend travelers to buy travel insurance, whether you’re traveling for a year or a week. These days, it is particularly important to have travel insurance that covers COVID-19. Read my travel insurance guide.
- Safety Wing is the most popular travel insurance company for COVID19-coverage. I use their Nomad Insurance plan, which covers COVID-19 as any other illness as long as it was not contracted before your coverage start date.
7. See the Tula Ruins
- Travel time: 1:40 hours
- Price: Entrance to Pyramid of Quetzalcoatl is 75 MXN/US$4
- How to get there: Take the bus from Mexico Central Norte to Tula De Allende which costs about 160 MXN/US$8. The ruins are a 30-minute walk from the city center or a taxi ride of 100 MXN/US$5. Alternatively, book this day tour from Mexico City.
A major historical hotspot, Tula de Allende was once the capital city of the ancient Toltec Empire. The main attraction here is the Pyramid of Quetzalcoatl, considered to be one of the finest examples of Toltec architecture. Four basalt statues of Toltec warriors stand on the top of the pyramid, making for a striking pose.
What Tula lacks in size and grandeur, compared to nearby Teotihuacan ruins, it makes up for in the intricacy of the carvings . It’s a relatively small archaeological site, but it has a dramatic setting. You can climb to the top of the pyramids and feast on phenomenal views of the sweeping Tula Valley beneath your feet.
Most people combine a visit to Tula with Tepotzlan. This day tour brings you to both and includes a guide and transfers from Mexico City. Skip to my section on Tepotzlan.
8. Visit the Mining Town, Mineral de Monte
- Travel time: 1:50 hours
- Price: Entrance to Acosta mine is 55 MXN/US$2.70
- How to get there: Book a day tour here. From Mexico city North station, catch a bus to Pachuca then get a taxi to Mineral del Monte again for around $200MXN/$10USD.
Mineral de Monte (also known as Real del Monte) is a pueblo magico renown for its mines which were once used to extract silver and other minerals. These days the mines are no longer in operation but you can visit them and see what life was like for the miners back in the day.
The two main mains you can visit are Mina de Acosta and Mina La Dificultad. Both mines have museums showcasing their history, plus original 19th-century machinery. Dating from the 1850s, the Panteón Inglés is a cemetery with the graves of English miners and other town inhabitants.
The English-style mining town is also famed for its traditional pastries and the English pantheon. You cannot leave without tasting the pasties (from the Cornish “pasti”), a flaky pastry that could be eaten on the go. Combine a trip here with visits to Pachuca and the Basaltic Prisms with this day tour.
9. Experience the Magic of Tepoztlán
- Travel time: 1:50 hours
- Price: Book a day tour for 970 MXN/US$48
- How to get there: Catch a bus to Tepoztlan from Mexico Taxqueña station on the outskirts of the city. The bus drops you off a little out of town and it’s about a 15-minute walk to the center, but the scenery on the walk is insane.
Tepoztlan, located just outside the large city of Cuernavaca, is yet another pueblo magico that many visit on day trips from Mexico City. It’s reputed as the birthplace of Quetzalcoatl, the Aztec feathered serpent god.
Tepoztlán’s most famous attraction is the Temple of Tepozteco. It sits on a clifftop in the Sierra de Tepoztlán that overlooking the city. The small and unassuming temple was built in homage to the Aztec god of pulque, Tepoztecatl. Pulque is Mexico’s oldest alcoholic beverage made from the pulp of cactus. The hike up to the temple is a proper workout, but the views from the top are definitely worth the climb.
Tepoztlan center is made up of narrow cobblestoned walkways, with papel picado (paper flags) often flapping overhead. It has a large market with lots of locally sourced produce, hand-crafted souvenirs, and many taco stands. I had some yummy roasted grasshoppers with my tahini-paste-ladened michelada at the markets and highly recommend them!
Mexico city Day Trips: 2+ Hours Away
10. See Millions of Monarch Butterflies
- Travel time: 2 hours
- Price: Entrance to the sanctuary is 80 MXN/US$4 or book a day tour for 1200 MXN/US$60
- How to get there: Catch a direct bus to Angangueo from the eastern bus terminal in Mexico City. From Angangueo, you can take a local bus or cab southwards, to reach the trail head of El Rosario.
This is a must-do day trip from Mexico City for animal lovers! Migrating Monarch butterflies travel in colonies of about 20 million insects in Michoacan every January to March. Sometimes if you’re lucky, you can even see quite a lot of them in November. It’s a sight to behold and truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
The Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve is a UNESCO World Heritage Site sprawling across an area of over 56,000 hectares. The two sanctuaries that are open to the public are El Rosario (near the town of Ocampo) and Sierra Chincua ( near Angangueo). It’s not easy to get to these sanctuaries, so I suggest renting a car or booking a day tour. Note that day tours take at least 12 hours, so I suggest spending a night in Michoacan.
If you visit at the beginning of the season, there will be fewer tourists there. Plus, you can time your trip to coincide with the Day of the Dead celebrations in Mexico City!
11. Admire the Basaltic Prisms
- Travel time: 2:20 hours
- Price: Entrance is 50 MXN/US$2.5 plus 100 MXN/$5 for the car park
- How to get there: You can catch the bus to Pachuca from Mexico City North then take a taxi to Huasca de Ocampo which will take around 30 minutes and cost just north of 400MXN/US$20.
The basaltic prisms of Santa María Regla are a series of columns formed by cooled lava. These geometric structures were formed 2.58 million years ago, when a volcano erupted and its lava cooled upon meeting the shallow river that used to flow here. You can admire the prisms from various viewpoints, but the best is from the waterfalls beneath.
They are part of the Comarca Minera, a UNESCO geopark with pools and all the facilities you’ll need. The prisms themselves are located just outside of town but there’s also a lot to see in Huasca de Ocampo itself, from ziplining across Peña del Aire to swimming in the trout lake at Bosques de la Truchas.
TIP: Huasca de Ocampo is a town that is a bit further than Mineral del Monte which in turn is next to Pachuca. It would be a good idea to make a weekend of it and stay overnight to visit all three places and their sights.
12. Visit Tlaxcala Firefly Sanctuary
- Travel time: 2:30 hours
- Price: Entrance to firefly sanctuary is 100 MXN/US$5 to 200 MXN/$10
- How to get there: You can catch the bus from Mexico City East to San Martin (1.5 hours). From there, take a taxi to the firefly sanctuary. Alternatively, book a day tour here.
Tlaxcala is the smallest state in Mexico, and yet it’s home to some of the oldest and most beautiful churches in Mexico. The main appeal of Tlaxcala, however, lies in the firefly sanctuary.
Every year, millions of fireflies flock to the Santuario de las Luciernagas (Nanacamilpa Firefly Sanctuary) in droves during their mating season: from June to August. The entire forest gets lit up with the glow from these gorgeous tiny creatures and it’s absolutely stunning!
This natural phenomenon only happens during a short window of time, so you’ll need to time this day trip from Mexico City in summer if you really to see it! The light show is so consistent you can set your watch by it — the best viewing times are from about 8:30 to 9:30pm.
TIP:Technically, you’ll need to stay the night in Tlaxcala to experience the magic of the firefly sanctuary, but at 2.5 hours from Mexico City, it is still doable as a day trip for the hardcore travelers. Book this tour that includes a night’s stay in an hacienda!
13. Walk around Puebla & Cholula
- Travel time: 2:30 hours
- Price: Book a day tour for 1,150 MXN/US$56
- How to get there: Take the bus to Puebla from the eastern bus terminal in Mexico City. It takes around 2 hours and costs 160MXN/US$8. From Puebla, you can get to Cholula by taxi in under 15 minutes.
Unknown to many, Cinco de Mayo (one of the most important Mexican holidays) is largely celebrated in Puebla, as it commemorates a battle that took place right here. If you happen to be in Mexico City during Cinco de Mayo, we highly recommend taking a day trip to this brightly colored colonial town!
Puebla is a mid-sized city blessed with spectacular architecture and plenty of historical monuments. The most notable buildings are the Puebla Cathedral and the Palacio Municipal (Town Hall). Just outside of Puebla, Cholula is famous for having the largest pyramid in Mexico.
The Great Pyramid of Cholula is actually bigger than the famous Teotihuacan pyramids. However, unlike them, the Cholula pyramid is not visible as it’s covered by earth and grass. Even if you haven’t heard of it, you’d have seen pictures of the yellow Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de los Remedios sitting majestically on top of the pyramid, backdropped by the snowcapped Popocatepetl Volcano.
14. Go Underwater at Las Estacas
- Travel time: 2:30 hours
- Price: Entrance is 460 MXN/US$23, activities cost more
- How to get there: Just outside of the city’s border is Mexico City Taxqueña station, catch a bus there to Chiconcuac and then a 30-minute taxi directly to Las Estacas Parque Natural.
Visiting Mexico City in summer? Las Estacas makes a great day trip from Mexico City if you’re looking to escape from the heat. The natural park has a series of natural pools, springs, and even islands all formed by the Yautepec River. It’s all pristine, freshwater that flows through the park.
You can go swimming, scuba diving, zip lining, and camping here and easily spend the whole day here. There’s even an hacienda with restaurants and rooms to stay overnight.
15. Hike in Iztaccihuatl Volcano
- Travel time: 2:30 hours
- Price: Book a day tour for 1000 MXN/US$49
- How to get there: I would recommend booking a tour for this one. There’s no public transport that gets there.
Iztaccihuatl, or “White Woman” in Nahuatl, is the third highest peak in Mexico. It’s easy to see why it got its name; when you look at it from afar, it really does resemble a woman lying down. Climbing the Iztaccihuatl Volcano is no mean feat, so we recommend hiking with an alpinist guide.
The best time to climb is between December and March as there is less chance of rain and the temperature isn’t too cold. You’ll need to trek for 3 hours to reach the snowcapped summit at 17,000 feet (5,200m) high. The air may be thin up there, but the views are not — soak up stunning views of Popocatepetl and the Valley of Mexico before descending the dormant volcano.
Mexico city Day Trips: 3+ Hours Away
16. Get Lost in Taxco
- Travel time: 3:00 hours
- Price: Book a tour of Cuernavaca & Taxco for 1000 MXN/US$49
- How to get there: Head to Mexico Terminal Taxqueña to catch a bus to Taxco for roughly 280 MXN/US$14.
Taxco is a whimsical pueblo magical that was put on the map thanks to its silver mines and jewelry. The town has a lot of character and it’s worth spending the day (or even two) exploring. There are lots of cute shops selling silver jewelry, as well as other souvenirs. You can visit the Casa Humboldt museum which is dedicated to the German explorer, Alexander von Humboldt.
The town itself is located in the hilly mountains of the state of Guerrero. The place is iconic for its Spanish colonial architecture, subservient of its red roof tiles and white painted walls. Plaza Borda is the town’s main feature, which is an 18th-century Santa Prisca church commonly referred to as ‘Zócalo’ by the locals.
17. Explore Cacahuamilpa Caves
- Travel time: 3:00 hours
- Price: Entrance to caves is 75 MXN/US$3.75
- How to get there: You’ll first need to get to Taxco, and then from there, take another bus which costs around 30 MXN/US$1.50 or book a day tour for 2700 MXN/US$132
You can easily combine a visit to Taxco with the Cacahuamilpa Caves, just 45 minutes away. Cacahuamilpa is the biggest cave system in Mexico and its magnificent stalagmite-covered walls sure do make you feel small. The caves are just a part of the Grutas de Cacahuamilpa National Park — you’ll also be able to explore tumbling waterfalls, raging rivers, and scenic hiking trails. My favorite part was the boat ride through the underground river!
Get your admission tickets at the Park’s Visitor Center. It’s not possible to explore the cave without a guide; guided tours leave every hour and last about two hours.
18. Soak in Grutas Tolantongo
- Travel time: 3:00 hours
- Price: Entrance is 150 MXN/US$7.50
- How to get there: It’s difficult to get here on public transport. You could grab a taxi but that will set you back 2300 MXN/US$120. We recommend renting a car or booking a day tour which will take you there and back from the city.
Easily my favorite place on this list of Mexico City day trips! With warm water tumbling over calcified travertine pools and cascading down waterfalls, Grutas Tolantongo is home to some of the most beautiful hot springs in Mexico. Read our detailed guide to Grutas Tolantongo.
At three hours from Mexico City, these hot springs are a bit far for a day trip, but many locals only come for the day as the hotels here are overpriced and don’t accept advanced bookings (you need to show up and hope for the best).
Getting to this remote part of the country isn’t straightforward, as you’ll need to navigate steep mountain roads and hair-raising corkscrew bends to get here. So if you’re not confident driving here, your best bet is to book a day tour.
19. See the Peña de Bernal
- Travel time: 3:00 hours
- Price: Entrance is 30 MXN/US$1.50
- How to get there: Catch a bus from México Central Norte station to Ezequiel Montes. From there, it’s a short taxi ride for 200 MXN/US$10 each way. Or book a day tour.
At 433 meters tall, Peña de Bernal is one of the world’s tallest monoliths and it looks really impressive up close. The monolith, composed entirely of pinkish-gray leucocratic-igneous rock, is thought to be over 65 million years old! It’s considered one of there 13 wonders of Mexico, so it’s certainly worth the 3-hour drive.
The stunning monolith attracts rock climbers from Mexico and around the world, with a number of routes of varying degrees of difficulty. For the less adventurous, a moderately strenuous 30-minute hike will take you as far as you can safely scale the rock without ropes. Get started early to beat the mid-morning rush and fierce heat.
The town located next to the monolith, San Sebastián Bernal (better known as Bernal) is a picture-perfect pueblo magico that’s definitely worth a visit. The town is home to the eloquently named Chapel of Souls and the Museum of the Masks. Both of which are good spots to stop off and have a look around.
20. Hike in Nevado De Toluca National Park
- Travel time: 3:00 hours
- Price: Book a day tour for 2000-3000 MXN/US$100-150
- How to get there: It’s too far away and difficult to reach by public transport. Booking a tour is by far the only way to get there and back in one day.
The Nevado de Toluca is a stratovolcano located in central Mexico, just west of Mexico City. At an elevation of about 15,000 feet, it is the fourth highest peak in Mexico. The volcano is covered in snow most of the year and is a popular destination for mountaineering skiers and snowboarders. And you can find several hiking trails that lead to the summit.
It takes about 8-9 hours to hike this mountain so we strongly recommend booking a guided tour. If you’re looking to summit, check out this summit tour. If you’re just looking to explore the mountain range and the nearby lake, then this day trip would suit you.
21. Explore San Miguel de Allende
- Travel time: 3:30 hours
- Price: 1500 MXN/US$75 for the tacos and tequila tour
- How to get there: Take the bus from República De Perú in Mexico city directly into San Miguel de Allende. If you are going for just the day, rent a car or book a tour as this shaves 2 hours off the journey each way.
Without a doubt, San Miguel de Allende is one of the prettiest cities in Mexico. Pastel colored colonial buildings and leafy green parks line the enchanting cobblestoned streets; church bell towers ring and the smell of jacaranda flowers fill the air.
Culturally, San Miguel de Allende is a treasure trove of historical sites. In fact, the entire old town was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008. Thanks to its location in the central highlands, it has an eternal spring weather, and the city is surrounded by wineries and hot springs. It’s no wonder Condé Nast Travellers Magazine named it the “best city in the world” two years in a row!
Don’t let the small size of the old town fool you! There are so many things to do in San Miguel de Allende that I would suggest staying here for at least 1 or 2 nights. Check out our guide on where to stay in San Miguel de Allende.
Top Things to do in San Miguel de Allende
Hike up to the Mirador
There are many viewpoints dotted around the town, but the Mirador undoubtedly has the best views over the city. The walk is around 15 minutes and at a slight incline, it’s walkable for all ages. You’ll get an awesome view of the city, and if you’re lucky enough to visit the town in spring, you’ll see the city coated in deep lilac from the sprouting Jacaranda flowers.
Admire the Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel
All roads in San Miguel de Allende lead to the Parroquia de San Miguel. Sitting in the very heart of the city, the parish church is the icon and beacon of San Miguel de Allende. With a facade unlike any other church in Mexico, this landmark is characterized by its pink exterior and wedding cake towers designed by indigenous stone mason Zeferino Gutierrez. Free entry.
Swim in La Gruta Hot Springs
Just 15 minutes outside the city, La Gruta Spa is blessed with natural hot springs, bubbling with curative waters that provide a glorious respite especially in cold winter months. The star attraction here is the cavern “La Gruta”. Entering through an entryway from the main pool, you’ll make your way through a white, narrow stone walkway that leads to a domed-shaped grotto where the source of the hot spring water is. Read my full guide on how to visit la Gruta hot springs.
22. Wander Around Morelia
- Travel time: 4:00 hours
- Price: 60 MXN/US$3 to enter the cathedral
- How to get there: The bus takes about 5 hours so unless you’re staying overnight, I suggest taking a tour.
At 4 hours out of Mexico City, Morelia is really quite far and definitely deserves an overnight stay. The city is clustered with beautiful stone fountains and offers European architectural vibes throughout. Most colonial towns in Mexico are covered with brightly colored paint, Morelia on the other hand keeps the stones neutral throughout, which gives it a different feel to other likewise cities.
The iconic place to visit while in the city is Catedral de Morelia which is a Baroque-style, Roman Catholic cathedral that stands at the head of Plaza de Armas. The Cathedral is stunning both inside and out. To go inside it will only set you back $60MXN/$3USD too.
Best Day Trips from Mexico City
Mexico City lies in the very heart of Mexico and makes an excellent introduction to Mexico with world-class museums, top-notch restaurants, and gorgeous neighborhoods. I’m not usually a fan of big cities, but I absolutely fell in love with Mexico City.
There’s a ridiculous amount of things to do in the city, and the myriad of Mexico City day trips vary from mountaineering treks to cultural towns and wildlife sanctuaries. Don’t forget to check out our guide on where to stay in Mexico City and our recommended 5-day Mexico City Itinerary.
I hope you’ve got some inspiration from this article for the best day trips from Mexico City. Feel free to leave me a comment below, and I’ll get back to you with answers to any questions you may have.
For those who are planning to travel more of Mexico City, check out other articles I’ve written on Mexico:
- 5 Days in Mexico City Itinerary 
- Where to Stay in Mexico City in 2022
- 30 Best Museums in Mexico City
- Visiting Teotihuacan: My Guide to the Mexico City Pyramids
- Day of the Dead in Mexico City: 2022 Events and Schedule
- Visiting La Gruta Spa: Hot Springs San Miguel de Allende
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Wow ! 🙂
This is probably the best site I have found with ideas and travel tips for Mexico !
Thank You Nellie, I have a trip already planned but after reading your blog and trip advise I know I will be back to Mexico again !
Wow thank you for your incredibly kind words! I’m extremely flattered.