Outside Mexico City Travel

AWESOME – Link for places to visit…in Mexico…  100 PLACES!

Next travel, you MUST try to go here, for a weekend at least: http://www.picocanoa.com.mx/ Go to the website and check out the video, EXCELLENT place!

Investigating areas outside Mexico City?  One great Option is Peter Winckers and Lidia Herrera’s opportunities here.

1) Bosque de las Luciernages

When told there was a trip to see fireflies, I laughed. Um, Yeah, we have them all the time in the states, what is the big deal? Little did I know.  In the national park, we saw many campers and people enjoying the company of family, food, and various recreational activities such as the trampoline, a a rope bridge, horseback riding, and a huge swing. IMG_6748 No big deal right?  As dark came, and we headed to the woods, it seemed as close to being in a fairy tale as possible.  The number, sheer number of fireflies with the stars all out was,  words could not hold the description, it truly was sacred.  Seeing that these 6 weeks in July are pretty much the time the fireflies give off light to mate, and there is one other place, Australia, that has this large of a showing, and seeing the hundreds, yes, hundreds, of people that came to see this, you realize the gravity of the event only where you are in the middle of the woods.  The smells, the sights, and the sheer feeling of freedom among such beauty makes this trek well worth it for the whole family.  10 pesos per person is an easy cost for something as such a natural wonder as this.


Tips on what to do!

Moli!, Black pottery, mezcal, the tallest tree ever!, rugs, carved animals, and beautiful colonial restaurants, definitely you do not want to miss this!

Staying there:    YOU want to stay at Don Nino Hostel, YES yes yes! EXCELLENT!

Some sites for reference:  http://www.travel.nytimes.com/2007/11/25/travel/25hours.html


Driving there:  http://www.tomzap.com/driving3.html

After being there from Thursday to Sunday WORTH IT! Trust me! Look for the following:

Lodging: Definitely Don Nino, which has a hostel and a hotel part, clean, cheap, and was a free breakfast with trips that you can take from the front desk!

Food there:

La Catedral – SO WORTH IT!     Known for the MOLE, so checkout the mercado there with various stations of MOLE, DELICIOUS!

Screen Shot 2014-08-03 at 9.23.25 PM


The Chocolate there, is WONDERFUL.  You can get a canisterScreen Shot 2014-08-03 at 9.21.09 PM for making chocolate milk or hot chocolate, and yes, well worth it.  A company titled Mayordomo, this is THE place! (location, Mina/20 de Noviembre)

Mezzaluna Restaurant – Ohmygosh good Italian and beautiful views!
Ignacio Allende #113, Oaxaca, Mexico

Sites and aspects to NOT to miss that we saw:

Get clothing! 100 pesos to 300 pesos for blouses and shorts, around 600 – 900 pesos for women’s dresses, etc, rugs/table coverings for around 800 pesos that are BEAUTIFUL!

Black pottery native to this area, worth getting a few pieces.

RUGS! Go see the following for SURE – you can stay there for 150 pesos per night and learn to do your own! and seriously, offer 50% less when they give you a price for rugs and start from there…that rug place you NEED to visit is:

Congregacion Artesanal Teotitlan del Valle, and look for Raul Chavez!
Email is gaspar_chavez@hotmail.com phone is 951 52 44092

This is the best place and you will not be disappointed!

Check out the Mezcal production places, as well as Monte Alban

Hierve el Agua (We swam here, wow, AWESOME!)

Mitla – WORTH the Historical Lesson….



Second trip single day, Sunday, March 3oth, 2014.
Travelled to on NOV. 28 TO DEC. 6, 2011

Mexico’s Silver Fair, in a city near six working silver mines. Three hundred silversmiths sell all sorts of jewelry and household items. (52-762) 622-227.


4) Cacahuamilpa National Park  – Caca




6) MALINALCO – Day Trip

Here’s an idea for a day trip from Beth Rousseau (beth@rousseauhome.com) —  Thanks Beth!!

I loved malinalco as a day trip. Here’s something I put on the newcomers website:

Hi, everyone! People have been asking about good places to go for a day trip. Today my family and I went to Malinalco, a pueblo magico south of Toluca, and we found it to be really fantastic. (My ten year-old wants to visit again, which is utterly atypical.) The town is very charming and features Aztec ruins high above the town, accessible by stairs (although get ready to huff and puff a little). Even better, unlike many towns in Mexico, the signage is great, including actually accurate signs to get you to town center and the archaeological sight, so you actually know what to do when you get there.

We took two different routes there and back; I recommend taking the route that is a little unintutive because it seems so much longer if you just look at a map. The reality is that the safest, quickest, and most beautiful route takes you close to Toluca via the Toluca highway (15) and then south on 55; google/gps for the rest of the route. The whole trip is under 2 hours.

Here’s a blog I found on it:http://mexicocitydf.blogspot.mx/2011/09/malinalco-mexicos-shangri-la.html  Enjoy!

I’d like to point out that you should NOT go through the Lagunas de Zempoala area.  This is NOT on the way to Malinalco, but should you get curious, please avoid that area.
Also, I just remembered that someone asked about a house rental in Tepoztlan, outside of Cuernavaca.  It’s a fun climb up the Tepozteco, and legend says it’s a very mystical place where you can recharge energies.  Do let me know and I can put you in touch.  My friend who rents her house that sleeps about 10-12 and has a pool is super nice.  Here’s a little on Tepoztlan.  It is close enough for a day trip too, but I suggest you avoid large holiday weekends like this last puente because of the traffic…
Let us know if you have cool ideas!  Karen  at  panewfamilies@asf.edu.mx

7) IMG_0238Speaking of Cuernavaca, I just went there on a whim December 26, 2013. No idea why, well actually, I was checking to make sure if I took Route 95, Insurgentes South, I would not see a way to loop around to catch Pachuca to the pyramids, and no, not in that direction.  To Cuernavaca, it costs 95 pesos on the toll road, but I found out coming back, I took the non toll road (Libre) and no problems at all and I saved the toll. My first impression of Cuernavaca was squished together, with the town circles, the town center Zocolo, etc, reminding me a little of Annapolis, MD but everything much tighter together.  All in all maybe like an hour and a half with traffic?  Not hard to see the city disappearing away which the scenes along the way were exciting seeing the countryside and scenery change so rapidly.  I was told with the lights around celebrations, that is something to see for sure.  I would have to say based on the above tip in #5, if you knew someone that had a place, visiting for a celebration, or a specific reason to visit there, it would be interesting to see this area and explore the things that are not apparent by just driving through and checking out the edges of the city.  I like this for a list of items to take in while there.


8)IMG_0253Speaking of Teotihuacan, lol.  Okay this is an easy trip, expect about one hour of a drive.   Also, it is easy to get there via terminal.  Just take 85n, which is basically Insurgentes, north north north, until you see the road split towards Pachuca.  Go towards Pachuca, and voila, signs for the Piramides!   You are on you’re way!  🙂  Never deviate and the exit 132d will appear, really not far at all.  The view is so worth it based on the short jaunt.  There is one quota, 59.00 pesos for autos, and that is nothing, another 45 pesos to park in the immediate area, and entrance is 57 pesos to enter (museum and park, a DEAL!)

Scout around the immediate circle for restaurants, as you think there is nothing but stands, but do not give up, we found some amazing places on the outskirts of the parking area in the circle that goes around the actual parking area.

A lot of must-sees on Wiki travel too!  I can’t put into words the beauty, but trust me it is there…:)_



9)Zacatecas – if you’re driving out of Mexico or just want a long weekend, this was suggested to be the place!  Recommended was this hostel as well:  Villa Colonial in Zacatecas – It has some mixed reviews but more positive than not – this location and hostel is on my list.

10) Patzcuaro – AMAZING PLACE – (Not sure why, it took me FOREVER to spell this?)   Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 5.41.09 AM

Of course Day of the DEAD  is THE time to go but book at LEAST six months ahead of time.  I am not kidding.  AT LEAST – PACKED.  Talk to Azteca Travel, we went with them and pretty amazing.    Once we got there, WHOA- AMAZING.

Things to do: Visit the cemetaries,  spend half a day through the tiendas of the main square, Bronze Museum in Morelia, the boat trip to Isla Janitzio,  Tzintzuntzan, and visiting the neighboring towns is pretty awesome as well.  Stayung just outside of the city, at Hotel Mision PERFECT.  Cheap.  Clean.  Amaing staff, internet HOT TUB, and just awesome.


11) Puerto Escondido

Flying Viva Aerobus, even as it charges for items, GREAT.  (In 2015, 1900 pesos, in 2016, I managed the roundtrip flight for 13500.00 pesos roundtrip!  YES!)  However, we had delays BOTH WAYS, so maybe an alternative (Interjet?) might be considered.

Hotel/ Hostel Chicatana – WAY COOL  🙂  120 pesos per noght for the hostel AND if you want to have much space to yourself, go THANKSGIVING.  BUSY BUSY BUSY during Christmas to New Year’s – but hotel rooms also available!

ALSO – Pelee Wing’s Birding tour of the Manialtepec Lagoon given by Mike Malone ended up being one of the highlights of our trip and should not be missed when in PE.

Check out the phosphorent plankton – BUT do it when the moon is at its lowest point before booking the trip!


12) Xochimilco

This is an amazing venue for family, visitors, friends, etc.. If you are wondering the going rate, thanks to others attending,  350 pesos per hour per boat is the official rate, PER BOAT, not per person!

You can Uber there from the City but also if you click on the words Xochimilco above, you will see how to get there by rail, not bad at all!



1 Response to Outside Mexico City Travel

  1. johnscherber says:

    After 15 months of criss-crossing Mexico, my new book looks at Americans and Canadians who’ve chosen to avoid the big expat colonies in San Miguel de Allende and Lake Chapala. What they’ve found is both diverse and surprising. If you’re wondering what the expat experience is like, whether on the beach or in the colonial cities of the interior, you need to listen to this conversation. The book is called Into the Heart of Mexico: Expatriates Find Themselves Off the Beaten Path, and there is no other book like it. There’s a sample on my website:

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