Boasting an astounding mixture of natural and cultural heritage, Mexico is home to over 30 World Heritage Sites which are considered to be of unmatched value to humanity. All the monuments in Mexico are worth visiting. As per UNESCO, Mexico has the most number of World Heritage Sites compared to any country in the continent but it is placed sixth when it comes to the whole world. Beautified with breath-taking views, hued sand dunes and craters, thrillingly intact archaeological sites and over 130 indigenous languages, Mexico is the perfect destination for those who have insatiable hunger for history and nature lovers. If you are planning to visit soon, check out the top 10 monuments in Mexico.
Popular Monuments of Mexico City
1. Independence Monument (Monumento a la Independencia)
This iconic monument in Mexico was built in 1910 and commemorates the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the nation’s War of Independence. As part of the War of Independence centennial celebrations, Mexico City’s Independence Monument (Monumento a la Independencia) was built in 1910. This statue often referred to as the Angel of Independence (El Ángel de la Independencia), is a 6.5-meter winged, shiny golden angel standing proudly at the top of the 36-meter / 118-foot column. The monument is illuminated and takes on a completely different, rather dramatic appearance, at night-time. Travelers who are unfit will find the steep12-story climb a challenge and those who fear tight spaces may want to avoid the narrow stairwell altogether.
Address: Paseo de la Reforma y Eje 2 PTE, Juárez, Cuauhtémoc, Mexico City, Mexico
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2. Chichen Itza
One of the seven wonders of the world, Chichen Itza is a pre-Columbian city from Mayan period. Located in the Yucatan state, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is a one day trip from Cancun. The city is one of the largest Mayan cities, the most visited archaeological sites and famous monuments in Mexico with more than a million tourists throughout the year, the centre of attraction being the pyramid El Castillo which used to be a place of worship. If you are planning to skip the beaches of Cancun for a day and wish to explore the ruins of one of the greatest civilizations of the planet, your trip will be definitely worth it.
Address: Chichén-Itzá, Yucatan, Mexico.
Also known as Bosque de Chapultepec, the city’s main park is actually a forest, which is referred to as the lungs of Mexico City. This important landmark in Mexico has a castle, a zoo, some lakes and several museums to check out. This historical site is situated in the middle of the city, covering the area of 6 sq. Km. This amazing place hosts a lot of attractions, such as city zoo (you’d see pandas, snakes & butterflies name a few animals) Chapultepec Castle, Museum of Anthropology, Museo de Arte Moderno, Children’s museum, Rufine Tamayo Museum, Technology museum, botanical garden, mini train, amusement park, and Presidential Residence. The Museum of Anthropology is a must-visit for everyone who’s planning to go to Chapultepec.
Address: Miguel Hidalgo, Mexico City, Mexico.
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4. Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral
Perhaps one of the most iconic landmarks not only in Mexico City but in the country as a whole is the Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral. This religious monument in Mexico is located in an ancient Aztec sacred area in the middle of downtown Mexico City and took over 200 years to complete with construction beginning in 1573. It took so long to build the structure that as a result, it can be seen exhibiting various styles of architecture based on what was popular at the time. This is what makes Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral unique and a must-visit attraction.
Address: Plaza de la Constitución S/N, Centro Histórico de la Cdad. de México, Centro, Cuauhtémoc, 06000 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Just 48 km away from Mexico City, Teotihuacan is a great place to see. You can take a day excursion to this ‘once a largely settled city’, an experience definitely not to be missed. The pre-Hispanic city of Teotihuacan has some amazing Mesoamerican pyramids, residential compounds, Avenue of the Dead, and other constructions. Pyramid of the Sun and Pyramid of the Moon are the most marvelous sites in Teotihuacan. This UNESCO monument in Mexico also owns some interesting displays, such as Museo de la Sitio and Palace of the Plumed Butterfly. Leaving early for this place would help you dodge the crowds and get some extra time to explore this archaeological site.
Address: San Juan Teotihuacán, State of Mexico, Mexico.
6. El Zocalo
Mexico City has some really beautiful neighborhoods; Polanco, Roma and Condessa, to name a few. But the true heart of Mexico City is the Historic Center that includes it’s main square or El Zocalo. The largest square in Mexico and third largest in the world, it’s been named an UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s the area upon which the modern city and it’s past civilization, dating back to the Aztecs, was built. Since it is so large, it’s a main gathering place and serves many purposes: political, spiritual, and artistic. From art and food festivals to gardens and traditional dance ceremonies and even protests, there’s always something exciting going on.This historical landmark in Mexico is also the center of government in Mexico City. Must see buildings include the National Palace, where the President reenacts the call to war or “el grito” that triggered the Mexican War of Independence every September 15.
Address: El Zocalo, Mexico City, Mexico.
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7. Centro Historico
Centro Historico has been entitled as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. A single day is not sufficient to get enough of the mesmerising architectures and cultural heritage of Mexico City. The main highlight of the Historic Centre is Zocàlo, the main plaza which happens to be one of the largest squares in the World. This popular monument in Mexico features the famous Metropolitan Cathedral which is the largest one in the Americas, boasting of the principle altar made of solid gold. Adjacent to the Cathedral are ruins of Templo Mayor, a prominent temple of Aztecs. Other magnificent attractions include Palacio Nacional (National Palace), Church of Santo Domingo, Mesuo Nacional de Arte (Mexican National Art Museum) and Palacio de Bellas Artes (Palace of Fine Arts).
Address: Historic center of Mexico City, Mexico City, Mexico.
8. La Reforma
La Reforma is one of the most famous landmarks. This road, designed after wide European boulevards, cuts through the city center. Initially, it was just for members of the royal court to get to the emperor’s castle, but in 1867, it opened to the public. As Mexico city grew, neighborhoods and subdivisions were built around it. If you take a turibus ride, you’ll no doubt end up on the Reforma. Now more than just a way to get around, the Reforma is lined with ornamental plants and green spaces to give it a park-like atmosphere. There are pedestrian medians, so people can “paseo” or stroll around. Perhaps one of the most outstanding features is the roundabouts or glorietas in Spanish. Most feature monuments of famous Mexican heroes and events. The modern-day Reforma takes on many roles. It’s used to celebrate and commiserate, protest and show off. It’s so popular that on Sundays from 8 am to 2 pm, it’s closed to vehicles. You can walk, skate, or ride bikes with thousands of other Chilangos that come out to enjoy it.
Address: Mineral de la Reforma, Hidalgo, Mexico.
Coyoacàn counts among the 16 boroughs of the DF. The historic centre in Coyoacàn is spread in about 29 blocks and holds one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Mexico City.Coyoacàn has managed to preserve some of the settings the same way they were in the colonial period. Usually crowded during weekends, this somewhat rural area is very much popular due to the authentic culture it showcases. The most renowned places in this important monument in Mexico are Frida Kahlo museum, Casa Luis Barragan, Museo Leon Trotsky and Anahuacalli museum. Plaza Hidalgo and Plaza del Centenario are also worth a visit.
Address: Coyoacán, Mexico City, CDMX, Mexico.
10. Zona Arqueológica de Cholula
Located in Cholula, Mexico the Zona Arqueológica de Cholula is another archaeological center of importance for Mexican culture and beautiful monument in Mexico. From a distance, the structure looks like a pyramid standing on a hill but up close the site is much more complex than that with several zones and buildings that once stood there as well. The pyramid here is actually the largest one in the world with excavations beginning in the 1930s and continuing throughout until the 1950s. The Zona Arqueológica de Cholula has information on the history and use of the structure as well as a collection of findings during the digs.
Address: Calle 14 Pte. S/N, San Miguel, Zona Arqueológica San Andrés Cholula, 72760 San Andrés Cholula, Pue., Mexico
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11. Palacio de Bellas Artes
Mexico is no stranger to world famous artists and architects, from Diego Rivera to Geraldo Murillo, the Mexican people place high value in their art, and nowhere is this more prominent than at the Palacio de Bellas Artes. This must-see monument in Mexico is among the most important of the city’s plethora of sites and attractions. Completed in 1934, the Palace is a hub for visual arts, dance, music, architecture and literature. The building itself is home to two museums, the Museo de Palacio de Bellas Artes, which hosts temporary exhibits, and the Museo de Arquitectura, an architecture museum that occupies the top floor of the building. Grand murals by world famous Mexican artists overtake the top floors of this magnificent white-marble palace. On the ground flood, there is a restaurant and bookstore. While the museum is an incredible hub for culture and art, the palace itself is an iconic Mexico City landmark, and to get a breathtaking view of Mexico City, with the Palacio de Bellas Artes in it, be sure to check out the 44th floor of Torre Latinoamericana, across the street from the museum.
Address: Av. Juárez, Centro Histórico, 06050 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
Uxmal is located in a stunning location surrounded by nature. The city is one of the most prominent archaeological sites in the Puuc Maya area and it was named after the architectural style of their temples. While you are here, you will get the chance to learn more about the life and traditions of the Mayan ancestors who lived here. Once at the site you will be able to explore its beautiful palaces which are all designed in a quadrangular way and are surrounded by pedestrian walkways. During the tour, your guide will tell you about the magical legends of this historical landmark in Mexico as you get amazed by the richness and detail of the architecture of monuments such as the Nunnery Quadrangle, the Pyramid of the Magi, the Temple of the Masks and the Governor’s House.
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Address: Uxmal, Yucatan, Mexico.
Come to Palenque and experience a day full of natural wonders and cultural exploring. During this activity, you will get the chance to explore the UNESCO-listed Palenque archaeological site and spend a couple hours discovering the temples and artefacts of this ancient city as you learn about the roles it played in Mayan civilization. When done here, you will then head to the two local waterfalls Misol-Ha and Agua Azul which are perfect for a refreshing afternoon swim, or you can relax as you admire the tranquil scenery. There is always the opportunity of purchasing refreshments and regional snacks along the way. After your visit, you will be dropped back to your hotel.
Address: Carretera a Palenque- Zona Archaeologica Km. 8, 29960 Palenque, Chis., Mexico.
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