After much deliberation, Jordan and I settled on Mexico City as the destination for our babymoon — one last trip before baby #2 arrives. We chose Mexico City for several reasons — for the flight that’s just a little over four hours from NYC, for the high elevation, which means no risk of Zika-spreading mosquitos, and for the fact that a gazillion people had talked about how great of a city it is.
And boy were they right. It’s been a crazy three weeks since our trip, and I had hundreds of photos to sort through, but I’m really excited to share a snapshot of our time there. I even put together a short video with this recap as an attempt to capture a bit of the vibe of the city. Make sure you scroll to the end of this post if you want to check that out.
We arrived for our four-night stay and settled into our boutique hotel located in the Condesa neighborhood. The vibe of this neighborhood is hard not to love, with beautiful tree-lined streets, an array of old-world and modern architecture, and plenty of delicious restaurants to choose from. For lunch when we arrived, we wandered a bit until we came across Temporal, a restaurant that changes its menu seasonally. Mushroom risotto, octopus tacos, crab cake sopes (and sopes are officially my new favorite thing) — everything we tasted was delicious, which we realized would just be the norm for every place we ate during this trip. We polished off our meal, strolled back to our hotel, and in classic parents-to-a-toddler-with-another-kid-on-the-way form, we were in bed by 7:00 p.m. And we stayed in bed until the next morning. It was absolutely glorious.
On our first full day, we started off by heading to breakfast a Lalo in the neighboring Roma neighborhood. The spot is bright, airy and popular. I had their chilaquiles, and they were amazing. During the winter months, Mexico City is cool in the mornings and evenings (45-50 degrees) but warms up to 75 degrees during the day. So after breakfast, we shed some layers at the hotel and then walked to Bosque de Chapultepec, a huge park in the center of the city (similar to Central Park) with museums and paddle boats.
We wanted to check out Chapultepec Castle, a former royal castle that sits atop a hill and offers views of the downtown cityscape. The castle holds several galleries and halls to explore.All that exploring led us right up to lunch time, so we made our way to Contramar, which is one of the most popular restaurants in the city, known for its selection of seafood. Sitting outside eating shrimp tacos with the softest corn tortillas and a fresh limeade was pretty much the best thing ever. In addition to eating, we spent time admiring the beautiful and colorful buildings found around the city. And we were so full from our late lunch that we skipped dinner and opted for churros and Mexican hot chocolate from El Moro instead. The next day we made our way to the Polanco neighborhood, which is a neighborhood full of large homes that I imagine are occupied by diplomats and the wealthy. I treated myself to a manicure and pedicure at Mylk Beauty Bar, and I wish I could pick this spot up and bring it back home to NYC. I caught up with Jordan, and we walked around Polanco and made our way to our lunch reservation.In case you were wondering, the photo above is Jordan’s recreation of President Obama’s portrait. He spotted this flower wall and was inspired. I was cracking up as I took this photo, and it still cracks me up when I look at it weeks later. That hand placement is priceless.Our lunch was at Quintonil, which has been named one of the best 50 restaurants in the world. We opted for the 11-course tasting menu, which was full of dishes I’ve never had or imagined, all inspired by traditional Mexican ingredients. We’re talking things like ant larvae, cow throat, and cactus sorbet. Pretty crazy, but all really tasty and amazing in its presentation. We walked off lunch by heading to the Museo de Antropologia, which is just one of a crazy number of amazing museums in the city. The museum walks through the history of Mexican people groups and includes a really beautiful collection of indoor and outdoor artifacts. Our favorite had to be the Maya exhibit, which was a sight to behold.Choppin’ it up with the ancients…Just outside the museum, I couldn’t resist jumping in front of these bronze wings. :-)We kicked off the next day with breakfast at a neighborhood bookstore and cafe called El Péndulo. This photo you see below is a regular scene in Mexico City cafés — where they come around to your table with a selection of the day’s pastries, and you get to pick out the one you want. Man, I loved this. After breakfast, we were back to exploring the tree-lined streets and parks in Condesa and Roma. Lunch was tacos from El Parnita, which felt like it would fit right in somewhere in the West Village. I wish I could have indulged in more street tacos and street food in general, but the last thing I needed was to risk something making me sick. Next visit, when I’m no longer with child, I’m stepping my street food game all the way up. After lunch, we headed toward the historic center of town, the Zócalo. We explored the Catedral Metropolitana and other old buildings. We made our way to Downtown Mexico, a multi-purpose building that holds a hotel, restaurants and several shops. We had just finished picking up some Mexican chocolates and handmade napkin rings when I felt like the room was spinning. Naturally, I thought, “Boy, I need to sit down – I’m feeling faint.” But before I had a chance to tell Jordan I needed to sit down, the sales woman behind the store counter told us, “Temblor!” And for those of you who don’t speak Spanish, “temblor” is the word for earthquake.
Yup, an earthquake! The store personnel quickly escorted us out of the store, down stairs, past swinging chandeliers, and out onto the street, where thousands of other people had made their way as well. This certainly shook things up in our plans for the day (pun intended). The streets were flooded with people. Thankfully, there were no injuries reported in Mexico City from the earthquake, so all in all, it amounts to a good story to tell. Jordan’s first, and my second, time experiencing an earthquake.
On our way back to the hotel, we came across a celebration of the Chinese New Year in the Chinatown neighborhood.On our final day in the city, we made a trip to Panaderia Rosetta, because we’d heard so many good things about the breads and pastries that they prepare fresh each day. Ohhhh, this place was so so good. The guava pastry you see on my plate was so tasty, we bought one to take on the plane home with us. And I devoured it before we were back in NYC.Do you see the love in my eyes for these pastries? It was real.We made a stop at the La Ciudadela market to pick up gifts for our parents, and I came across a handmade throw blanket that I’m pretty much obsessed with (I’ll share a pic soon).Mexico City – you stole our hearts! We now fully see what all of the hype is about and we can’t wait to make a return trip. Thanks for being a beautiful backdrop for a new adventure and chance to connect before baby #2 arrives.