Mar 05

How to Spend a Long Layover in Mexico City

On the way back from Cuba, we had a 9 hour long layover in Mexico City.  With this length of layover, it’s very worth a trip into the city.

Getting into Town

It is possible to catch the subway to the center of the city, but I highly recommend taking the blue metro bus.  The cost is 30 pesos (about $1.50 each way).  We were told to buy the tickets at the airport on a non-refundable 20 peso metro card but it appeared we would have been able to pay cash on the bus.

The bus was nearly empty and we drove by many full bus stops but the locals were all waiting for the 5 peso buses.  We got off near the Post Office, but there are several other stops one could use.  If a person wanted to get off and enter at the same spot, the Belle Artes would be a reasonable place.

Post Ofifice

We first stopped at the magnificent Post Office.  Christmas season was near so they were putting up a fanciful tree.  It felt so weird to see this decadence after 2 weeks in Cuba.  The Christmas trees there looked like throw aways.

Belle Artes museum

We went over to the Belle Artes museum but the line was crazy long so we decided to head over to the Zocalo.

Long Layover in Mexico City

Yeah, after seeing that line I wanted to run too!

Churches of Mexico City

We walked down the pedestrian shopping street and had our own food tour of Mexico city.  We stopped into a church where the nuns were selling homemade flan.

Street Food

I had a passion fruit popcicle at the ice cream shop and we stopped at the most amazing taco restaurant at address 7 near the Zocalo.  The line was 30 people long so you knew it had to be good.  The line moved fast and for $1 I had 2 small tacos with unlimited toppings – sauces and pickled vegetables.

The Zocalo

We walked around the Zocalo and they were setting up for Christmas season here.  The giant Christmas tree was obviously sponsored by Coca-Cola, with ornaments in the shape of bottle tops and others with the Coke polar bear.

It seemed like some day of the dead displays were coming down in time for Christmas.


The local cathedral was beautiful.  Gold plating, lots of worshipers.

Aztec Shaman

Behind the cathedral was this Aztec shaman who could clear you aura for a fee.

We ate another snack that was basically a giant single tortilla chip with toppings.  So spicy and so good.

Mexico City Sears Department Store – Great View

We walked back to the Belle Arte Museum and the line was even longer.  There was a multi-storied Sears department store opposite the museum so we headed up the escalators to the top floor where we had an amazing view of the museum.  There was a coffee shop there but all the outside seats were full so we decided to head back to the airport.

Long Layover in Mexico City

At the airport, I had time to check out the Aeromexico lounge on my Priority Pass.  There was a wall full of refrigerators with almost any drink you wanted… Mexican cokes, juices, flavored coconut water, and a variety of Mexican beers.  The bar served wine, mixed drinks, and fancy coffees.  There was a buffet of food but it was kind of weird stuff and we had eaten so much on our informal food tour of the city.  The lounge also had free wifi that wasn’t available in the rest of the airport so I got to make a skype call to family since I had been disconnected for 2 weeks.  This was a good end to a good trip.

I had traded money in Havana and had about $25 in Mexican pesos, but found that I was left with more than $10 at the end of the day despite our food tour of the Mexican capital.

Traveled Nov, 2016


Like this advice?  Pin it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.