No longer known as the Federal District, Mexico City—or the Ciudad de Mexico (CDMX)—is transforming itself in more ways than one. Today, Mexico's sprawling capital is also one of its hottest destinations, a hub of culinary delights, vast history, and exciting cultural offerings. Want to experience the CDMX at its best? Here are three ways to do so.
Brush Up on Local History
Futura CDMX: Any trip to Mexico City should include a trip to the Futura CDMX, an interactive center that highlights the Mexican capital and its growth. Along with multimedia installations showcasing everything from local bicycling infrastructure to ways in which the CDMX compares to similar megalopolises worldwide, Futura is home to the Great Model: a 234-square-foot representation of the city that works as part of a larger audiovisual display. (Note: There's one daily English-language showing.)
Metropolitan Cathedral: Once you’ve familiarized yourself with your surroundings, head over to Mexico City's zocalo—or main square—for a visit to the Metropolitan Cathedral, Latin America's largest and oldest cathedral. Built between the 16th and 19th centuries, this Gothic-inspired structure occupies the site of the former Aztec sacred precinct. Today, it's one of the city's most beloved attractions: Its bell tower tours are not to be missed. Not only are there spectacular 360-degree views from the cathedral's rooftop, but if you plan correctly you can enjoy a front-row seat to the cathedral's daily noontime bell concert—with a chance to ring one of the 35 bells yourself.
Monumento a la Revolución: Cap off your history tour with a visit to the Monumento a la Revolución, located downtown in the Plaza de la República and home to the relics of Mexican revolutionary heroes like Venustiano Carranza and Francisco “Pancho” Villa. Once here, board a glass elevator for a speedy ride up nearly 190 feet to the monument’s copper and steel dome. Continue up a spiral staircase for a breathtaking overview of the city.