Traveling to Mexico City? Looking for the best Mexico City itinerary? Grab this ultimate 4-day itinerary for Mexico City with the best places to visit, recommended tours, and best places to stay. Plan a memorable Mexico City trip. #MexicoCity #Mexico

Best 4 Days In Mexico City Itinerary For Culture Vultures

Last Updated on December 10, 2023 by Soumya

If you’re planning to spend 4 days in Mexico City, then you’re at the right place.

In this unique, culture-filled travel itinerary, we will explore all the best things to do in Mexico City in 4 days.

From ancient ruins to modern art galleries, delicious street food to Michelin-star restaurants, and colorful markets to floating gardens, Mexico City has something for everyone.

With so much to do, is 4 days in Mexico City enough?

Short answer. Yes, it is absolutely enough to get started.

As someone who has lived in and explored CDMX several times, I can tell you that a 3 – 4 day Mexico City itinerary is a great place to start.

If you plan carefully a.k.a read and stick to this itinerary, then you can cover a lot of ground in 4 days. Mexico City, despite its size, is easy to explore if you split it into neighborhoods. And, that’s exactly what I have done here.

Please note: This post may contain affiliate links which means I may earn a commission if you make a purchase by clicking a link on this post. This will be at no additional cost to you. Affiliate links help me keep this website up and running. Thanks for your support!

4 Day Itinerary Mexico City: A Quick Look

Day 1 – Historic Center (History, Art, Food, Museums)
Day 2 –
Teotihuacan (Pyramids & Balloon Ride)
Day 3 – Coyoacan & Xochimilco (Frida Kahlo & Floating Gardens)
Day 4 – Chapultepec Park & Castle

Best Mexico City 4 Day Itinerary for Culture Vultures

Author in front of the Mexico City National Palace
Whether you’re visiting Mexico City for the first time or the tenth, this 4 days Mexico City travel itinerary by an ardent CDMX fan will show you the best that the city has to offer.

This 4-day Mexico City itinerary is full of history and culture. If you are a history buff and wondering what to do in Mexico City in 4 days, then this guide is for you.

Day 1 (4 Day Mexico City Itinerary): Historic Center, Food, Museums

Start your four days in Mexico City with a tour of Centro Historico, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the heart of Mexico’s capital.

Spend the Morning at Zocalo

Begin your first day at the famous public square called El Zocalo, also one of the largest in the world.

Officially called “Plaza de la Constitucion”, the Zocalo has been the venue for all kinds of festivities and ceremonies ever since the time of the Aztecs.

Several important buildings and monuments surround the Zocalo. Here are the 3 most important ones that you cannot miss.

  • Metropolitan Cathedral: This is the most impressive building at the Zocalo. Built in a combination of Baroque and Renaissance architecture, the cathedral has exquisitely-carved exteriors and gilded interiors. An interesting fact is that you will see a Black Christ here who is believed to possess miraculous healing abilities.
Aztec ruins at Templo Mayor Museum
Ruins of Templo Mayor are a must-have on any Mexico City itinerary, be it four days or one.
  • Ruins of Templo Mayor: If you are looking for Aztec ruins in Mexico City, then you can find one right here in the historic center. The ruins of Templo Mayor were once the heart of Aztec life and culture in ancient Tenochtitlan. Today, you can see the ruins of a main pyramid, a skull rack, colorful murals, and several Aztec artifacts at the Templo Mayor Museum.
  • National Palace: The majestic palace is the office of the Mexican President and home to some of the most beautiful Diego Rivera murals including the famous “History of Mexico”. You can visit only with a guided tour. Find out how to do that in my National Palace Guide.

Pro Tip: Over several visits to Mexico City, I have realized that doing a guided walking tour is absolutely the best way to see the historic center especially if it is your first time in Mexico City.
↳Click here to check out the best Historic Center Tour now.

Best Places for Lunch in Centro Historico

If you are looking for tacos, try them at one of Mexico City’s famous taco joints – Los Cocuyos or El Huequito. These taco joints are open round the clock if you need a quick refill.

Tacos in Mexico City
Tacos are a must-have when visiting Mexico City for 4 days or 1 week.

Another great place to have lunch in the historic center is Cafe de Tacuba, which has remained unchanged ever since it opened its doors in 1912.

Cafe de Tacuba is housed in a former convent and serves recipes that have not changed over generations. Décor comprises of Talavera pottery, brass chandeliers, and colonial art work.

Eating a meal at Café de Tacuba is almost like stepping back 100 years in history.

More Art and Culture in Historic Center

After a filling lunch, head to the western edge of Centro Historico where you will find several colonial-era buildings, art museums, and palaces.

On this private tour of Mexico City, you will visit several of these colonial palaces and learn about life in colonial times.

Here are some of the unmissable sights in this area.
  • Palacio de Bellas Artes: The Fine Arts Palace is one of the prettiest buildings in the historic center and home to a permanent collection of Mexican murals including many by Diego Rivera. This is the place to get rich insights into Mexican fine arts including dance, music, and literature.
View of Palacio de Bellas Artes from the observation point at Torre Latino
Wondering what to see in Mexico City in 4 days? Head to the stunning Palacio de Bellas Artes.
  • Palacio Postal: Another stunning palace that is usually not part of Mexico City itineraries is the Postal Palace. The marble and bronze stairway in the middle of the building is unmissable.
  • Casa de los Azulejos: Covered in white, blue, and yellow tiles, the House of Azulejos in Mexico City center was once the abode of a noble. Today, it is home to a full-service restaurant called the Sanborns as well as an interesting mural by José Clemente Orozco, a glass ceiling atrium, and several stone pillars.
  • National Museum of Art: Yet another beautiful palatial structure is the National Museum of Art, also known as MUNAL. Come here for Mexican art produced between the 16th and 20th centuries as well as some stunning staircases.
  • Alameda Central: Tired at the end of all the sightseeing on the first day of your 4 days Mexico City itinerary? Head to Alameda Central, a sprawling public park right in the middle of Mexico City, and relax.

Evening in the Historic Center

You can spend your evening on Plaza Garibaldi enjoying live music and listening to mariachi bands on this wonderful Garibaldi night tour.

Or do a private night taco tour where you dig into several varieties of tacos and taste some mezcal too.

If you would rather have a quiet evening, head to Torre Latinoamericana, Mexico City’s tallest skyscraper, for a drink at the Level 40 Sky Bar and some stunning views of the city.

📖 Related Read: If you’re planning to spend more than four days in Mexico City, then you’ll love this epic collection of 20 Best Things to do in Mexico City’s Historic Center.

Day 2 (4 Day Mexico City Itinerary): Teotihuacan Pyramids

One of the best things to do in Mexico City is to visit the incredible pyramids of Teotihuacan. Located only a hop away from Mexico City, these ancient pyramids are every history lover’s dream.

The ancient city of Teotihuacan was built around 200 BCE, rose to supreme power in 400 CE, and was abandoned between the 6th and 7th century CE.

Today, Teotihuacan is one of Mexico’s most visited UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The ancient Mexican pyramids of the Sun and the Moon are the highlights of a Teotihuacan visit. And so are the Temple of the Feathered Serpent and the Palace of Itzpapalotl.

View of Pyramid of Moon from the top of Pyramid of Sun
The pyramids of Teotihuacan are a must-have on your 4 days Mexico City itinerary.

Pro Tip: Arrive here early in the morning to beat the crowds and the heat. The site is open from 9am – 3pm, Monday – Sunday.

Note that, unlike many other archaeological sites in Mexico, Teotihuacan is not closed on Mondays.

Best things to do in Teotihuacan

Here’s a brief overview of the best things to see in Teotihuacan. I highly recommend reading through my detailed Teotihuacan travel guide for all the details.

  • Monumental route: Walk down the Avenue of Dead and visit the Temple of Feathered Serpent and the Citadel, see the monumental Sun Pyramid (the Sun Pyramid is no longer open to climbing), explore the ruins of Itzapapalotl Palace, and discover the secrets of the Moon Pyramid. Also stop by the Teotihuacan Culture Museum. This is the most common itinerary for Teotihuacan.
  • Mural route: Includes the Jaguar mural, Palace of Itzapapalotl, Tepantitla architectural complex, and the Beatriz de la Fuente Mural Museum (located a little further away from the main complex).
  • The mural route complements the Monumental route very well. Very often, people just stop at the monuments but there’s so much to be discovered at the murals including rich snippets of Teotihuacan life and culture.
Mural of Jaguar at the Avenue of Dead in Teotihuacan
Murals of Teotihuacan. Have you heard of this hidden gem in Mexico City?

Best Teotihuacan tours

Whether it is about getting early access, seeing the pyramids from a hot air balloon, or learning all about this ancient pre-Hispanic site from a private archaeologist, Teotihuacan guided tours definitely have their advantages.

Here are some of the best Teotihuacan tours to include in your Mexico City 4 day itinerary.

  • On this highly-rated Viator tour, you will enjoy early access to Teotihuacan ruins and the company of an archaeologist guide who will take you around the plazas and the murals. At the end of the tour, you will stop at an obsidian workshop and taste tequila, mezcal, and other local liqueurs. You can book the same tour on Get Your Guide here.
  • This full-day excursion from Mexico City will take you to Teotihuacan as well as The Plaza of 3 Cultures in Tlatelolco. You will also stop at The Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico’s largest religious sanctuary. The best part about this tour is the fact that you see three heritage sites in a day at a very affordable price.
  • Who doesn’t love a hot air balloon ride, that too over the majestic pyramids of Teotihuacan! This hot air balloon ride includes 45 minutes of flying over the archaeological site, breakfast, honor toast, and diploma.

Pro Tip: Want to see more options? Check out our post on the 13 Best Teotihuacan Tours from Mexico City

Where to eat in Teotihuacan?

You’ll find snack vendors and water at the entrance gates. I recommend carrying sufficient water with you if you plan to spend the entire day at the complex.

There are quite a few good (and unique) restaurants right outside the gates if you decide to step out.

  • La Gruta: Housed in a cave, La Gruta is one of the most unique restaurants I have ever been to. You’d be literally eating traditional Mexican food in a candle-lit cave. They have been around for more than 100 years now with a cuisine inspired by pre-Hispanic cultures.
  • Mayahuel Teotihuacan: Another great place to eat with stunning views of the Sun Pyramid from the terrace dining area. They serve delicious Mexican food and have lots of options to choose from.

How to get to Teotihuacan from Mexico City?

You can get to Teotihuacan in under an hour by using Mexico City’s public transportation. Taking Autobuses Teotihuacan from Terminal del Norte (Google Maps) is the easiest way to do it.

Or you can book one of the guided tours recommended above.

Pro Tip: For more details, read our complete Mexico City to Teotihuacan day trip guide.

Day 3 (4 Day Mexico City Itinerary): Coyoacan & Xochimilco

On the third day of your 4 days Mexico City itinerary, head to the historical neighborhoods of Xochimilco and Coyocan.

Both Coyoacan and Xochimilco are located in the south of Mexico City. Therefore, they can be easily clubbed into a full-day trip.

Author on one of the best Xochimilco tours
Colorful trajinera boats in Xochimilco.

The Floating Gardens of Xochimilco

The borough of Xochimilco is often called the “Venice of Mexico” because it is home to the Floating Gardens of Xochimilco.

If you have read my post on unbelievable facts about Mexico City, you will know that ancient Tenochtitlan was built on lakes.

The Aztecs used an extensive canal system to get around Tenochtitlan. Now, only a small section of these canals is left in Xochimilco. They are called Floating Gardens or the Chinampas, now a UNESCO site.

Xochimilco makes for a fun day trip from Mexico City. And in my opinion, a great addition to your 4 day itinerary of Mexico City.

What to do in Xochimilco?

At the Floating Gardens, you can ride on a trajinera, a colorful gondola.

Eat, drink, and be merry while listening to mariachi bands playing in the background and the humdrum of local Mexican families who often come to party here.

Visiting Xochimilco is one of the most touristy things to do in Mexico City. But hey, if you like people-watching and enjoy local culture, then why not?

Don’t let others stop you with their stories because this unique Mexican experience is worthy of being devoured.

📖 Related Read: Love day trips? Check out this epic list of the 22 best day trips from Mexico City, exclusive for culture lovers.


Coyoacan literally translates to the “Land of Coyotes”. Historians suggest that this area was full of coyotes in the Aztec times and that is how the name stuck.

You can still see a water fountain with the bronze statues of a pair of coyotes at Parque Centenario in the Coyoacan borough.

Garden at Frida Kahlo Museum
Wondering what to do in Mexico City in 4 days? Visit Frida Kahlo Museum.

There are several interesting things to do in Coyoacan especially with its lovely collection of museums, churches, markets, and gardens.

  • Coyoacan is home to a famous Mexico City landmark – Frida Kahlo’s Museum or The Blue House. This is exactly where Frida Kahlo lived and died. You will find many creations by Kahlo and Rivera, their personal items, and photographs at the museum.
  • The church of San Juan Bautista is yet another unmissable Coyoacan attraction.
  • If you haven’t shopped for Mexican souvenirs already and looking for a traditional market, head to Mercado de Coyoacan. From local handicrafts to food and grocery, this is the perfect place to buy Mexican goodies.

Pro Tip: Weekends are crowded in Coyoacan since locals visit in large numbers. I recommend doing a weekday trip here if possible. But remember that the Frida Kahlo Museum is closed on Mondays.

Murals of UNAM

Another great addition to the third day of your Mexico City travel itinerary is the mural-covered wall of UNAM Central Library.

I know art lovers are going to love this. So, I could not help recommending it here.

The National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) is located just minutes away from Coyoacan.

The façade of the Central Library features one of the greatest murals in the world. It is called the Historical Representation of Mexican Culture. Painted by Mexican artist, Juan O’Gorman, the mural shows various epochs of Mexican history.

If you are looking for a tour that covers Xochimilco, Coyoacán, and UNAM, try this one. With knowledgeable tour guides and rave reviews, this private tour is worth it.

Best Xochimilco and Coyoacan tours

If you wish to avoid the hassles of public transport and taxis, book one of these popular guided tours and you will be all set for the day.

  • This full-day tour takes you on a trip down Xochimilco’s canals, a tour of Coyoacan’s colonial neighborhood, and a visit to University City where you can admire the splendid murals. You can opt for visiting Frida Kahlo’s museum too. Travelers love this tour for their knowledgeable guides and authentic experience.
  • On this highly-rated tour, you will explore the Blue House or Frida Kahlo’s House Museum with an expert art guide and learn all about the painter’s life and her many portraits.

How to get to Xochimilco and Coyoacan from Mexico City?

In front of the Blue House in Coyoacan Mexico City
On this Mexico City itinerary, 4 days are filled with history, art, and culture.

It is super easy to get to Xochimilco from Mexico City by train.

Get to the Tasquena Terminal on Metro Line 2 (blue color). From there you can take the Xochimilco Light Rail (Tren Ligero) to Xochimilco Terminal.

The ride takes about 35 minutes and costs 3 pesos (USD 0.15).

To get to Coyoacan, you need to get off at the General Anaya station on Line 2. A single ticket on the Mexico City metro costs 5 pesos (USD 0.25).

Alternatively, you can also use Uber which is pretty convenient and stress-free in Mexico City.

Day 4 (4 Day Mexico City Itinerary): Chapultepec Park & Castle

The famous Aztec Sun Stone at the National Anthropology Museum
The famous Aztec Sun Stone at the National Anthropology Museum.

I have tried to keep the last day of this history-filled 4 days in Mexico City itinerary a little relaxed so that you do not tire yourself out before your travels the next day.

What better way to do so than by heading to Bosque de Chapultepec, a huge green park that functions as the lungs of Mexico City.

The best part about Chapultepec Park is that it is home to so many other interesting attractions.

One of my favorite museums – the National Anthropology Museum – is located inside the park.

Since Chapultepec Park is huge, it is divided into 3 sections.

  • Section 1 has a big zoo, National Anthropology Museum, Modern Art Museum, Chapultepec Castle, and a lake with boating facilities.
  • Section 2 has the amusement park, a children’s museum, and the Natural History Museum.
  • The last Section 3 is all about wooded trails and wildlife.

Admission to Chapultepec Park is free but you need to pay if you wish to enter any of the attractions.

Sections 2 and 3 are open 7 days a week. Section 1 is open 5am – 7pm, Tuesday – Sunday but closed on Mondays.

You will want to keep this in mind when planning your Mexico City itinerary. If Day 4 falls on a Monday, I suggest that you shuffle things around.

Author at Chapultepec Park
Done boating at the lake in Chapultepec? If not, add it to your 4 day Mexico City itinerary.

Chapultepec Castle

One interesting place to visit inside Chapultepec Park is the Chapultepec Castle which also houses the National History Museum.

There aren’t many cities in the Americas that can boast of castles. After all, the Americas never had kings and kingdoms. 

But Mexico City is one special place in North America that has a legit castle that once housed European and Mexican sovereigns – the Chapultepec Castle. 

Built in the early 18th century, the Chapultepec Castle once housed the Viceroy of New Spain as well as Emperor Maximiliano.

It was here that six young men (Niños Héroes) died defending the castle during the American War.

The castle is also home to the National Museum of History with some exquisite artefacts from the time of Emperor Maximiliano and some incredible murals.

The museum is open from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Tuesday – Saturday. They are closed on Mondays.

Admission is 90 pesos. Check here for updated admission costs and hours.

Stained Glass panels at Chapultepec Castle
The stained glass corridor at Chapultepec Castle is a wonderful addition to your weekend trip to Mexico City.

Best Chapultepec park tours

  • On this tour of Chapultepec Castle and Anthropology Museum, you will learn all about the life and time of Emperor Maximiliano and discover stunning European ornamentations. Then, you will visit the National Anthropology Museum where you explore the life and culture of Pre-hispanic people – the Mayas, the Aztecs, and the Toltecs.
  • If you are looking for a private tour, here’s a good one that includes both Anthropology Museum and Chapultepec Castle and a knowledgeable tour guide.

How to get to Chapultepec Park?

Chapultepec Park is located about 5 miles (8km) southwest of Mexico City Historic Center.

A drive from the Historic Center to Chapultepec Park takes around 20 minutes. But with Mexico City’s crazy traffic, you never know.

A faster, more reliable, option is the metro. At Zocalo, hop on the Blue Line going towards Tasquena. Get off at Pino Suarez and board the Pink Line going towards Observatorio. Get off at Chapultepec or Juanacatlan and then, walk.

Interactive map for 4 days in Mexico City

Interactive map of Mexico City itinerary
Click on the map above and access directions to all the attractions that you can see with 4 days in Mexico City.

More than 4 days in Mexico City?

Having more than 4 days in Mexico City is a great idea because there are so many amazing things to do here + tons of wonderful Mexico City day trips to take.

If your trip to Mexico City is going to be longer than four days, here are some more brilliant ideas of things to do.

  • Spend a day in the bohemian neighborhoods of Roma and Polanco. Polanco is replete with art galleries, museums, theaters, and some of the most renowned restaurants in Mexico City. Roma has a more hipster vibe with colorful street art, art deco buildings, charming boutiques, and cute cafes.
Traveling to Mexico City? Looking for the best Mexico City itinerary? Grab this ultimate 4-day itinerary for Mexico City with the best places to visit, recommended tours, and best places to stay. Plan a memorable Mexico City trip. #MexicoCity #Mexico

Where to stay for 4 nights in Mexico City?

Staying in the historic center when you are going to Mexico City for the first time is always a good idea because it is safe, beautiful, and convenient.

On Day 1 of your Mexico City trip itinerary, you don’t even need to travel much to get to your destination.

Plus, the center is well-connected with every other part of Mexico City through metro.

Here are some of my favorite and highly recommended places to stay in Mexico City for 4 days.

  • Gran Hotel Ciudad de Mexico: This 5-star hotel is located right at the Zocalo, within walking distance from Metropolitan Cathedral and National Palace. It is housed in a huge Art Nouveau building complete with a Tiffany stained-glass ceiling for the lobby. Just the perfect place to stay if you are a culture-geek and have some money to splurge. Check out some incredible pictures here.
  • Kali Centro Mexico City: Modern décor, great breakfast, impeccable service, and stellar reviews are what Kali Centro is known for. It is located super close to the Palace of Fine Arts and Alameda Central. If you are looking for a budget option, then this is the perfect choice. Read more reviews here.
  • Historico Central: Located in the heart of the city, Historico Central offers stunning views of Torre Latinoamericana. Some of the rooms have balconies too. Plus, they have a coffee shop service available for free to all their guests. Book your stay at Historico Central here.

Practical information for spending 4 days in Mexico City

At the pyramid of moon in Teotihuacan
At the Temple of Moon in Teotihuacan – a must-have on your Mexico City travel itinerary.

Best time to visit Mexico City

The best time to visit Mexico City is during spring (March – May) and fall (September – November).

The weather is great and it is a good time to be out and about. I love this time because it is the best time for walking tours in Mexico City.

Winters can be chilly and summers are rainy in Mexico City.

If you don’t mind the summer heat and afternoon rains, June – August is a decent, more affordable time to visit Mexico City.

Getting to Mexico City

The best way is to fly into Mexico City International Airport and then take a taxi/metro/Metrobus from there.

If you want a private pick-up, here’s a reliable private transfer option that you can use.

Getting around Mexico City

It is easy to get around Mexico City by Metro and Metrobus.

Mexico City Metro consists of 12 lines and operates between 5:00 am – midnight. Each ride costs 5 pesos (USD 0.25). Use Mapaway App to navigate easily.

Metrobus consists of 7 lines that operate between 4:30 am – midnight. Each ride costs 6 pesos (USD 0.3).

Read our complete guide on the best ways to get around Mexico City by public transportation before arriving in CDMX.

Uber is affordable and convenient. We ended up using Uber quite a bit on our trip there.

But beware, traffic in Mexico City is nasty, especially during rush hours. Avoid traveling during the rush hours.

Experience more of Mexico City
Read our posts on
Mexico City Historic Center | From visiting the ancient ruins of Tenochtitlan to stuffing yourself with tacos, there are many wonderful things to do in the Historic Center of Mexico City.
Teotihuacan Pyramids | Grab this ultimate guide to visiting Teotihuacan from Mexico City. Or check out some of the best Teotihuacan tours in the market.
Mexico City Landmarks | Wondering what to do in Mexico City? See the best Mexico City landmarks.
Aztec Ruins | From the famous Teotihuacan to the lesser-known Tenayuca, here’s a list of 8 Aztec ruins in Mexico City that you cannot miss.

Loved our 4 days Mexico City itinerary? Pin it for later!

Traveling to Mexico City? Looking for the best Mexico City itinerary? Grab this ultimate 4-day itinerary for Mexico City with the best places to visit, recommended tours, and best places to stay. Plan a memorable Mexico City trip. #MexicoCity #Mexico

Soumya is an acclaimed travel writer who has traveled to 30+ countries and lived in 8 while pursuing her passion for history and culture. Her writings have been published in BBC Travel, Architectural Digest, National Herald, and many more. She loves exploring world heritage sites and has a deep affinity for everything ancient, especially the lost civilizations of Mesoamerica!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Begin typing your search term above and press enter to search. Press ESC to cancel.

Back To Top