From Pyramids to Chocolate, Mexico City Through the Eyes of Children

Mexico City is known for its many cultural attractions and a flourishing cultural scene. But the capital city’s appeal as a family-friendly destination hasn’t come to the forefront until recently.

Comments: 17

  1. We loved the balloon tour over Teatijuacan, as well as Mexico City. The archeological museum is fantastic. Mexico is loaded with excellent archeological sites, as well as beaches, snorkeling, resorts, great weather. I would love to car tour there. It is great touristing. However it's not very safe. Our phones were stolen in a clever subway scam ... my husband's wallet was snatched as well. We spent a lot of time wiping the phones, canceling credit cards, and changing passwords. You might ask - why did you take the subway? Well you know, that's what you can do in safe cities. We weren't beaten up so maybe we were lucky. I don't want it to be true because Mexicans are such friendly welcoming people. I hope they can get a handle on their crime and corruption problem in my lifetime. They could have lots of Americans who want to move there. They could have tourists from around the world. Our relatives from France were afraid to go (and we never told them anything). Mexico is just too dangerous.

  2. Mexico City is not more unsafe than many other major cities in the world. The statistics just don't back that up. That said, you need to take some precautions just like you do in other cities so that you are not a victim of preventable crimes. I know people who have been robbed on metros in Chicago and NYC. Many years ago I had my purse stolen in Budapest. I had forgotten to secure it as I knew I should have. My guess is that unfortunately your family failed to take similar precautions with your phones. But I would visit Budapest again in a heartbeat, and would recommend anyone do the same with Mexico City.

  3. I would still encourage families to travel to Mexico City, just take normal precautions like leaving valuables in the hotel safe. I feel much more worried traveling to the US, because of mass violence, than I do in Mexico City. Theft can happen anywhere, so I don't think it's a reason not to explore and give your kids a chance to see new things.

  4. Are you sure you are from Chicago?

  5. If your kids have studied Spanish in school, don't over plan the trip. Get them to find out which bus you take where, how you get to the restaurant you've chosen, and how much it costs to get into the museum you're visiting. My kids were shy at first but they got the message that I don't speak a word of Spanish and if they didn't take over, we weren't going to have any fun. The kids came to understand that they were in charge, and I don't think they will ever forget that trip.

  6. I spent my childhood in Mexico City so this article is not news to me. What is news is that it took so long for someone to write it, and that I, myself, didn’t think about this before. I have such fond memories of spending weekends with my expat parents in San Angelin, Chapultepec and Balderas market. I can’t imagine a more stimulating place for kids and it accounts for my lifelong love of big cities and my decision to raise my own kids in one. The museums, from the kid-friendly chocolate museum to the exciting and fascinating anthropology one, were the best part. The palace of fine arts downtown, filled with beautiful artworks and artifacts, was a favorite. (And it’s sinking! Talk about blowing a little kid’s mind!) The cultural heritage is enthralling. From the great cathedral in the zocalo (it’s literally covered from floor to ceiling in gold!), to the ruins of gargantuan temples and pyramids speckled across the city, to Maximillian’s castle with the sad history of the little hero boys, to the beautiful boats and canals of xochimilco, to the bittersweet Day of the Dead celebrations, there is literally something for everyone. Even now, 30 years later, I’m filled with longing to return. And don’t even get me started on the food, the shopping and the people. Mexicans love children (April 30th is a huge holiday - the Day of the Child). Thank you for this great article and for the trip down memory lane.

  7. In 1953, my parents drove us to Mexico City, from North Carolina. My engineer father wanted to take measurements of the pyramids; my free-spirited mother wanted the floating gardens. My most enduring memory is the mosaic walls of the University of Mexico UNAM, designed by artist O'Gorman.

  8. I was just there albeit as a solo traveler.It's a magnificent city,and not at all the menacing,unsafe place many have been lead to believe.Interesting culture,great history,nice people(it does help to know some Spanish since English is not widely spoken)and the food is fantastic.The fact that everything is about half price than here makes it a real bargain and things like Uber are like 3-4 dollars!! Still not convinced however that it's great for kids but I guess there's enough to see and do for all.

  9. Should this article be in the Travel section instead? Nice article though.

  10. MEXICO CITY is a wonderful place and your time can be spend just looking at the Diego Rivera murals as well as the other artists from that period. and despite what some nitwit says Mexicans are our friends.

  11. If your kids are 12 or under, another great activity if they understand some spanish, is to go to Kidzania (both in posh santa fe neighborhood and in cuicuilco in the south. Kids pretend to be nurses, radio hosts, bank tellers and so on and so forth. Very ingenious theme park.

  12. We went to Kidzania with three kids under the age of 6. They loved it! My son still talks about it. I read that Kidzania is coming to the Dallas area soon.

  13. CDMX is a great place. Museums, history, phonetically beautiful Espanol, warm people and spectacular food. That is if one travels with scrupulous public health precautions in mind. CDMX, floating on a lake and sinking, is known for precarious water sources. My family (with kids) took some time to recover from unwise advice...'this water is filtered'... well, it was not. The other advice is to plan your bus, subway travel meticulously. I have traveled to 30 countries, but navigating CDMX was a challenge. Buses abound on Reforma and Zocalo, but we had no clue where they were headed to. Few people speak English in CDMX, even in tourist areas as most tourists are from Latin American countries. Subways are infamous for safety and 'squishiness' issues. I highly recommend the METROBUS - new, safe, spacious, informative - Linea 7 now on Reforma, thankfully! Despite all that, CDMX is a great place, full dimensioned culture accessible to North America. Travel barriers and unsafe water were the barriers for us not reaching the top destination, the pyramids. Plan ahead, even though the travel books say going to the pyramids is easy via the train station, it never hurts to over prepare.

  14. Mexico City is safe and wonderful place to visit. Certainly if I was traveling with children there are much more interesting places to see ruins right in the heart if the city and some of the best museums that certainly would engage children. Not just sitting at a nice hotel that can be done at home, children need to see what they don't have at home and the museums are just one example exposing them to new culture. So thus article hardly does Mexico City justice.

  15. How's the air pollution ? Last I read I thought it was the equivalent of two packs of cigarettes a day.

  16. We just got back from cdmx with two kids under 4. We did an Airbnb in condesa, which was right in between the best playgrounds in parques Mexico and España. We also enjoyed museo del papalote and the acuario inbursa. Kids were welcomed everywhere we ate ( although we didn’t go to Pujol type places.) I can’t wait until they are older so we can do even more.

  17. I almost didn't read the article as it started with "the Four Seasons." Not my income bracket, usually followed by recommendations of activities designed for tourists of those incomes. Kids do fine on trips all over the world without being catered to. Our children and grandchildren have visited many countries from Asia to Europe to Central America and learned to adapt to different cultures. Take it slowly don't cram too much in one day, teach them a few words in the local language, and to be polite to everyone.