Mexico City, Mexico

I finally made it south of the border! My trip to Mexico City marked the beginning of three weeks solo backpacking Central America, and this first stop definitely did not disappoint.


It took me three flights and nearly all day to get from my hometown in Virginia to Mexico City. Once I made it to the CDMX airport, I made the bold choice of navigating public transport and somehow made it from the airport to my hostel 1) alive, and 2) for only 5 pesos. Pretty good, right?!

I first checked in to my hostel, Casa Pepe. This is one of my favorite hostels I’ve ever stayed in, both because of its facilities and its social opportunities (which you will see had a huge impact on my visit. I changed clothes, unpacked a bit, and immediately got ready for my first evening in the city. I met Angelica and Sarah at power hour on my hostel’s rooftop and enjoyed some tacos, margaritas, tequila, beer, and mezcal with a large group of new friends before heading to Lucha Libre. Not a bad start to a 3-week trip, huh?

My attendance at Lucha Libre was all about cultural immersion and being social. I would never go to a wrestling match normally, but this dramatized performance was super entertaining to attend in a huge crowd chanting and drinking beer.

I couldn’t get myself to stay out any later after a full day of travel and socializing, so I headed to bed when the group got back to the hostel.


I started my morning with some breakfast on the rooftop with new friends, and at 10:30, I headed out with a group of 20-30 people to Xocomilco.

Somehow, I got distracted by the tacos and literally lost the entire large group of young foreigners. Let’s be clear: solo travel is great, but actually getting lost from the group is not so great. Thankfully, after about 40 minutes of asking strangers “Donde esta el grupo de trente americanos?” and getting chased by just a couple of dogs, I made it onto my hostel’s boats just in time to make a dramatic entrance.

We spent the day sailing, dancing, singing, and drinking (everything from scorpion shots to pulque to lots of water – hydration is so important!!). I got to meet pretty much everyone there throughout the day, and many of us (thanks to the Irish guys convincing us all) decided to go to a football (soccer) match when the canal tour ended.

At the stadium, I ate some of the best tacos of my life, but I ended up bailing and going back to the hostel with a couple of others instead of watching the game. My body highly appreciated the lengthy nap, and then it was time for more fun!

I went to the rooftop to hang out for a bit but ended up being coerced into dancing, sampling some tequila/mezcal, and heading to the nightclub with a large group of people staying and volunteering at the hostel. I stayed out until around 3am before coming back and having a great 6 hours of sleep.


My first task of the day was finding an ATM where I could get some pesos, and once I had that covered, I headed up for breakfast. Since most people were still in recovery from the night before, there weren’t many large groups, but I recognized Tatjana and decided to hang out with her while eating.

That decision actually led to a full day of exploring Mexico City together. Tatjana and I had a bit of a transportation adventure and eventually made it to Chapatulec Park. We explored the lake area and many street vendors before arriving at the National Anthropology Museum.

The museum was huge and overwhelming, but in a stroke of luck, we ran into another person from our hostel in the first room of the museum. He had family in Mexico and was super interested in many of the different indigenous groups in the area, so he essentially gave us a free 3-hour tour of the museum, sharing stories and insights along the way. Thanks, Armando!

Then, we ran over to the castle to meet up with Angelica, Sarah, and Andrew. We explored the history museum inside, but I was honestly far more impressed by the architecture, including the balcony filmed in Leonardo DiCaprio’s Romeo and Juliet movie.

Our group was ravenous after a busy day of museums and exploring, so once we made it back to our neighborhood, I declared that it was time for a taco tour. We went to three different absolutely delicious local stands and restaurants, of which my favorite had to be the famed Cocuyos. We followed up the savory food with some churros from El Moro (huge line but sooo worth it!).

While I was exhausted and definitely didn’t want to have a late night, I caved and went to karaoke on the rooftop in hopes of seeing some people once more before I headed out. I could already tell there were lots of new people coming in who I hadn’t met yet, and six of the eight people in my dorm room had checked out that day, so it seemed like decent timing when I left to pack up my things and prepare for my departure the next day.


I had a rather early morning of gathering my belongings, checking out, and then heading to the Roma Norte neighborhood with Angelica and Sarah. We went to a delicious vegan brunch spot, La Pitahaya, to celebrate Angelica’s birthday, and then we explored Roma Market a bit, but then it was time for me to say goodbye, head the airport and get ready for my next stop.

My first 3.5 days were nothing short of eventful and exciting, but I knew that the adventure didn’t end there! Next up is Oaxaca, Mexico!

2 responses to “Mexico City, Mexico”

  1. […] enjoying about a week in Mexico City and Oaxaca, it was time to say goodbye to Mexico and head to my next destination: […]


  2. […] Mexico City, Oaxaca, Antigua, Acatenango, and Lake Atitlán, I headed on to Caye Caulker, Belize. The beginning […]


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