Hiking Izta-Popo National Park: A One Day Volcano Hike in Mexico City

If you want to hike in Mexico City, Izta-Popo National Park is one of the absolute best options. Daniel and went on a day trip from Mexico City, and it was so easy to get to. Add some fresh air on a hike in Mexico City to your itinerary with this guide to hiking Izta-Popo National Park!

 

 

The Stats: Izta-Popo Hike in Mexico City

Distance from Mexico City: 1.5 hours by bus

Hike Time: 6 – 8 hours

Hiking Distance: 20k / 12.4 miles

Altitude: Start at 11,105 ft and climb to 13,047 ft

 

 

Total Cost

I was going to say this is super cheap hike in Mexico City, but after adding up the expenses I’m kind of surprised. Almost all of our costs were spent on transportation.

We spent 120 pesos round trip on the Uber ride to and from the bus station, 70 pesos each for the round trip bus tickets from Mexico City to Amecameca, 400 pesos round trip for the taxis to and from Paso de Cortez (250 on the way up, and 150 on the way down) and 35 pesos each to enter the National Park. We packed our own food and water for a picnic lunch.

In total, the price for the Izta-Popo National Park hike in Mexico City was 730 pesos for two people ($39 usd). If you have a car, though, you can cut costs almost to zero.

 

 

Getting There

Getting to Izta-Popo National Park from Mexico City is really easy. First, take a taxi, uber, or metro to the TAPO bus station. From here, look for the “Volcanes” bus line sign. It’s easy to spot, and once you do just walk through the room to their ticket station.

We paid 35 pesos each for our ticket, and hopped on the next bus to Amecameca. They leave multiple times an hour, so don’t worry about scheduling.

Try to go as early as you can. There’s a couple reasons I recommend this. First, the ride out only took an hour because there was zero traffic, which was nice because it took about 1.5 hours on the way back to Mexico City.

Also, we were on the 6:40 am bus so we got to see a beautiful sunrise over the mountains as we drove… definitely makes the ride more enjoyable!

Finally, we had super clear skies and amazing views all morning. Then, just like everywhere else in Mexico City, the smog and haze rolled in and majorly obstructed Popo Volcano. Clouds usually gather in the afternoons to hide the peak of Izta too, and she was almost completely out of sight by noon.

Because these two volcanos are the main attractions of Izta-Popo National Park, there’s really no point in planning this as an afternoon trip. If you can’t go early, it’s probably not worth visiting unfortunately. But if you can…. do it! The views are really unforgettable on a clear and crisp morning.

 

 

What to Pack

Definitely DO NOT forget sunscreen! At this high altitude it’s easy to get burned, as Daniel and I unfortunately found out. Also, there’s nowhere to get food and water after Paso de Cortez, (except possibly a small market stall at La Joya) so pack lots of snacks and two bottles of water per person.

Finally, layer up. I started in a fleece jacket, then switched to a light cardigan, and finally completed the hike in just a t-shirt. Temperatures change quickly in the shade and sun on mountains, so be prepared with warm and cool clothes.

 

 

Where to Hike

Once you arrive in Amecameca, turn left out of the bus station and walk down the street to the main square. Here you’ll see a line of taxis, and you can grab the first one.

Negotiate with the driver on a price to Paso de Cortez, the entrance to Izta-Popo National Park. It’s about 30 minutes away from Amecameca, so expect to pay between 150 to 300 pesos. We paid 250 for our ride up.

As you leave the town and start to climb in the mountains, the air gets colder and the landscape changes from houses and businesses to forested roads and mountain views.

Once you arrive at Paso de Cortez you can buy your entrance band at the small park office and start your hike.

 

 

Paso de Cortez Round Trip – 12.5 Miles

You really have two different options for the Izta-Popo hike in Mexico City, depending on how much you want to trek. We did the Paso de Cortez roundtrip hike, and it was long.

It’s mostly on a dirt road, and some cars will pass from time to time. The hike is 6.2 miles from Paso de Cortez to La Joya.  During the hike we had the road almost to ourselves most of the time, watched Popo Volcano erupt (twice!), and had beautiful views of Izta Volcano.

The signs pointing to La Joya are very obvious and easy to follow. There were also side trails to a secluded rest station with picnic tables where we stopped for an early lunch, and others that leave the main road and branch into the prairies on the mountainsides.

We left Paso de Cortez around 8:45am and reached La Joya at 11:15 (with lots of breaks, picture stops, and lunch in between). The whole hike so far had been easy, flat, or just gradually uphill. Once you get to La Joya, that changes.

 

 

At La Joya there is a parking lot where a lot of people opt to start their trek instead. This is where you can finally step foot on the Izta Volcano. The main trail veers upwards, and it’s a steep climb. It does even out eventually, but the high altitude and uphill battle mean it’s definitely not easy. We only climbed on Izta for about short amount of time.

After abut 15 minutes, we saw a small path that left the main one and went right. We climbed it and emerged on the ridge to the most amazing views of Izta behind us, Popo to the left, and the sweeping valley and city laid out to our right. Seriously amazing photo op.

From there, we decided to turn around because we still had a LONG way back to Paso de Cortez. We started the trek down, walked past La Joya, and continued the 6.2 miles back to Paso de Cortez.

With two miles left (we had walked 11.5 in total at this point) a taxi driver passed us. He was headed back to Amecameca from dropping a passenger at La Joya, and we happily flagged him down. It was only 150 pesos to get us back to Paso de Cortez and then all the way down to Amecameca bus station.

If a taxi doesn’t pass you (I wouldn’t count on the good luck) you can wait at Paso de Cortez for one. They come to drop of tourists fairly often and it shouldn’t be a problem finding one for the way back.

 

 

La Joya to Paso de Cortez One Way – 7 Miles

After our experience, I had another idea for a great way to see the Izta-Popo National Park hike in Mexico City. This option gives you a chance to see the awesome landscape without having to hike all 12.5 miles of Paso de Cortez to La Joya and back.

If you want to cut your hike to 7 miles, have your taxi driver take you from Amecameca all the way to La Joya. You can start your hike here and climb up Izta for a bit, and then turn around and hike down to Paso de Cortez. You’ll see all the gorgeous views we did, without having to back track or repeat upon yourself.

The total trek distance would be a mile or two up and down Izta from La Joya, and then 6.2 miles from La Joya to Paso de Cortez. Definitely a good option to consider!

 

 

Hiking Izta-Popo National Park in Mexico City

A trek in Izta-Popo National Park is a great one day hike in Mexico City. It’s easy to access, the trails are extremely well maintained, and the views are truly stunning. You can hike on Izta Volcano herself, and watch Popo erupt multiple times from afar. You can even bring some camping gear and spend a night or two here… I bet the starry nights would be beautiful.

I highly recommend a trip to Izta-Popo National Park the next time you need some fresh air and an escape from the city!

All my love,
Di

PS want to challenge yourself to reach the peak of Izta Volcano? Check out this guide on Summit Post to learn more about the permits, timing, and where to sleep in the park.

 

 

 

 

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Get a Job as a Flight Attendant: Everything You Need to Know

Want to travel the country for free? Get paid to fly to exotic destinations?

If so, it’s time to get a job as a flight attendant! I interviewed Kelly, who has been working for American Airlines for four years, and she had a lot of info to share. Keep reading to learn about the finances, lifestyle, and all the insider tips and tricks you need to know to get a job as a flight attendant!

 

The Stats

Average Income: Kelly makes about $3,000 to $4,000 a month depending on how much she chooses to work. Yearly before taxes in 2017 she made $53,000

Free Housing/Utilities: No

Tax Free: No

Healthcare: Yes

Vacation Days: You gain a certain amount of vacation days every year. Starting out you’ll get four days a year. After working for four years, Kelly is up to seven days a year, and soon she’ll jump to ten.

Certifications needed: You don’t need a college degree to become a flight attendant, but it does help. Around 30,000 people apply for the job every year and they only hire 500, so you want to stand out!

 

 

Getting the Job

If the stats look good to you, it’s time to start your job hunt. Kelly says the best way to get started is checking the websites of all the major airlines, because they usually have specific hiring periods. From there, you can send in an application on their website.

If you’re looking for more, join the Facebook group “Flight Attendant Career Connections” where there are job postings and plenty of people who are happy to help you out and answer any questions you may have.

 

The Application and Interview Process

Once you choose the airlines you want to work for, the application process if fairly unique. Kelly applied online, and a few days later had a video interview from home. Afterwards, they called to tell her they were interested, and flew her to Charlotte for an in-person interview.

What she didn’t know that was that there would be 90 other people interviewing at the training center with her… and only ten would get the job. Kelly said she doesn’t think she ever stopped smiling, because she was told they liked positivity and charisma. Clearly, it worked. Many other interviewees at the center said they had applied 4 – 6 times already and were never chosen.

The group was slowly weeded down. Kelly explains:

“Some instructors came into the room and said they needed additional information from a few candidates (about 20 of us) and told the rest that the interview was over and that they’d be in touch. We went into another room and were told we made it to the second round of the interview. We had a few more activities and then the face-to-face interviews.  After that, only ten of us got the job.  After being chosen, you do A LOT of paperwork, give them info for a background check etc. Finally, they told me they’d be in touch with my training date, which was only two weeks later!”

If you want to stand out in the interview, definitely remember to smile a lot, and check out the book called “The Essential Guide to Becoming a Flight Attendant,” which Kelly says was gold for tips on what they are looking for. Finally, don’t get discouraged! The acceptance rate is even less than an Ivy League school, so keep trying.

 

Starting Work

Once you get a job as a flight attendant, the final step is to make your location change. After the training, flight attendants are assigned a base (Kelly was given Philadelphia) and have five days to move to it. From here you have several options for housing.

Most stay in what’s called a “crash pad” where they pay $200 to $300 a month for a bed when they aren’t flying. Kelly chose not to go that route, because 12 people in one house just didn’t seem too fun to her (and I gotta say I agree).

Others will choose three or four friends from training, get a one bedroom apartment somewhere, and put four twin beds in to save money! You can also do what Kelly does and just rent an apartment on your own. It all depends on how much money you want to save, and how much you value your personal space…

Finally, some flight attendants choose to “commute” to their base, but it adds a strain onto the already stressful transition period. Kelly recommends, at least initially, to move to the base you are given and get used to the job before you consider commuting.

 

 

Finances

As stated in the stats, Kelly makes about $3,000 to $4,000 a month. But, income really depends on three things: your airline, your seniority, and how many hours you want to work.

If you get a job as a flight attendant at American Airlines, the starting pay rate is about $25 an hour. If you choose to work for a regional airline, you’ll start closer to $16 or $17 an hour. You’ll also get a raise every year that you work, up until you reach the maximum pay rate in year thirteen.

 

Hours

Just remember, airlines count hours a little weird. Flight attendants are only paid when the plane door is closed, so they aren’t getting paid when the flight is delayed or for any time they spend at the airport before one. However, they do get an extra $2.20 an hour for every hour they are away from their base city, to help cover costs of food and transportation on long trips.

When it comes to choosing your hours, you can manage if you want to work a lot or a little. Kelly is called a “high time flyer” in flight attendant slang. That means she goes “aggressive” to fly, and will get trips before others who don’t go aggressive or want as many hours. Because of this, she chooses to work from 85 up to 115 hours a month depending on the season.

Just like most jobs, the start can be difficult and income fluctuates. Kelly says it took her three years to have a steady and comfortable income. 

 

The Benefits Of Working as a Flight Attendant

So, why stick with it? For the benefits of course! Flight attendants get paid vacation, but also so much more.

One major perk of the job is free domestic flights, and international flights from $40 to $200 roundtrip! Costs depend on the country you are going to, because they only pay the taxes that those airports require.

For example, right now AA flight attendants can get round trip flights to Rome for only $50! The most expensive option she has at the moment is London at $225 round trip.

These benefits aren’t just for the flight attendants, but also for their families and friends.  Kelly explains:

“My mom and dad can travel for really amazing prices, I’d say even less than a fourth of what a normal ticket costs. I also get 16 buddy passes a year, which are not free, but are discounted, and prices on those can vary depending on location and taxes. They can be complicated to redeem, but I do give them out to people who understand the process. I can also have one registered guest who flies for the same prices as I do (free domestically and for a fee internationally). However we get some money taken out of our paychecks when they fly, which can also be confusing at times. Overall, we have great travel benefits.”

When you get a job as a flight attendant, you will also get healthcare, vision coverage, dental insurance, a 401k that’s matched by the company, and the opportunity to peddle credit card apps, which Kelly makes an extra $500 to $1000 from every month.

So, can you save money with this position? Kelly says it can be difficult, but it’s definitely doable.

 

 

Lifestyle

The lifestyle of a flight attendant is definitely different from a normal nine-to-five, but in a good way if you love to travel. Kelly gets 12 days off a month. She bids for her schedule two weeks in advance, and always knows what it looks like by the 21st of the month prior.

As a reserve flight attendant, she also sometimes gets called in to replace the senior attendants. When that’s the case, she often has to drop everything to be at the airport in only two hours.

 

Travel Often

Taking vacation is always easy, and flight attendants are constantly using their benefits to travel around the world. Any time flight attendants aren’t working, they can take an unlimited amount of free domestic flights or cheap international ones.

Kelly travels as often as she can, and it turns out that’s A LOT.  In a week she’s off on a solo adventure to Buenos Aires and Uruguay, and next month she has plans to spend a week in Amsterdam. Since she started working for AA, she’s been to Italy, Spain, France, Scotland, Ireland, Puerto Rico, Germany, Mexico, Israel, and many more countries. 

However, one common misconception (at least, that I had) was that flight attendants could extend layovers when they fly to international destinations, and explore them a bit longer. Actually, that’s not the case. You can’t extend layovers, and can only stay as long as you are assigned. Usually for international trips, that means 22 to 50 hours before your flight out again.

 

old city walls from above

 

Kelly’s Experience as a Flight Attendant

What makes someone decide to become a flight attendant? For Kelly, it just always sounded interesting.

She had just moved back to the US from Rome, and was missing the travel and lifestyle she had in a foreign country. A teacher she worked with had gone on to get a job as a flight attendant, so Kelly decided to apply as well. “Initially I thought I could never live that type of lifestyle, because I knew I’d be away a lot. I made the decision because of the travel benefits, but I genuinely love this job.”

The culture is really fun. Everyone usually has a great personality and is hilarious. Also, Kelly says, you never have a supervisor while up in the air, so you make all the the decisions which takes a lot of stress out of the job.

Kelly loves working as a flight attendant, but it’s definitely not for everyone. The schedule and hours vary wildly, and they travel a lot. “Many people end up quitting because they hate the lifestyle. It truly is a love or hate type of job.” 

 

Day to Day Work

First, Kelly packs, gets ready, and leaves her apartment for the the Philadelphia airport.

Then she checks in to the crew room, walks to the gate, and flies on anywhere from one to five flights in a day.

Finally, she arrives at her final destination for the night. When it’s not her base city, a shuttle waits to pick them and take them to their (all expenses paid) hotel. The next day, she gets up and starts all over again.

 

Pros and Cons

Of course, every job has pros and cons. For Kelly, the cons are being exhausted at times, and how hard the job is on your body. It’s hard to eat well when you’re always on the go. You can’t buy a lot of fresh food, because you’ll never be home enough to eat it before it goes bad. When you’re always eating in airports, you just have to find other ways to be healthy.

The pros, like the travel and medical benefits, the fun lifestyle, making a lot of new friends, and of course the long layovers in new cities and countries, definitely outweigh the cons of the position.

By the way, if you’re trying to get over your fear of flying, take it from Kelly. She’s flown thousands of hours in the past four years, but when I asked for horror stories she said there haven’t been any issues except a few bouts of turbulence. That’s always reassuring to hear!

 

palm trees

 

Get a Job as a Flight Attendant

If you want to travel the world and get paid to do it, it’s time to get a job as a flight attendant. Apply to airlines, take the leap, and expect the unexpected in this position. For Kelly, working as a flight attendant has been a blast. “Every discovery I’ve made throughout the process was always cool with me. This journey is something I wouldn’t trade for anything.”

 

PS not sure if this is the right job for you? Visit Working Abroad to see more ways to make money while traveling the world, like freelance digital marketing, teaching ESL online classes, and more! 

 

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8 Things to Do in Chapultepec Park

Did you know Chapultepec Park in Mexico City is the largest park in Latin America? Spanning over 1,600 acres, it’s an oasis of greenery and an escape from the bustling city outside it. However, Chapultepec isn’t your usual park, and there’s MUCH more to it than just some trees and jogging trails. Here are eight awesome things to do in Chapultepec Park on your next visit.

 

1. Enjoy the View at Castillo de Chapultepec

 

 

This is the best thing to do in Chapultepec Park, and you should definitely prioritize it. Entrance to the castle costs 70 pesos per person and is so worth the money.

We started our day walking up the winding road to the top of “Grasshopper Hill” where the castle sits. Once there, we explored the gardens and took in the beautiful panoramic view of Mexico City. On a sunny day, it’s really stunning.

 

 

There’s also a museum explaining the history of the castle, and lots of totally ornate and over the top bedrooms, bathrooms, and sitting rooms you can check out. We spent about two hours here, but if you’re a huge history buff you’ll definitely want to stay longer.

 

2. See the Giant Pandas!

I looooooove pandas! It’s been my dream for years to see them live, and despite all the traveling I do I’ve actually never gotten to see one. Because of that, I was so excited when I found out there are two at the Chapultepec Zoo, and that the zoo is free! This was second on our list of things to do in Chapultepec Park, and was about a 20-minute walk from the castle.

 

 

Two pandas were gifted to Mexico City from China in the 70’s, and the two living at the park today are their surviving offspring. They were just laying and chilling and doing super cute panda stuff while we were there and I loved it! The zoo also has tons of other animals and exhibits, but it was so crowded when we went that we decided to just see the pandas and call it a day.

 

3. Chill at the Lake

Bring a blanket and a good book to Chapultepec Park, and you’ll be set for the day. After walking all around the castle and the zoo, I was ready to relax. There’s a large lake on one side of the road where you can rent boats to ride around in, and a smaller lake that has green space and trees around it. We plopped down in a shady spot and spent Sunday doing what Sundays are for… nothing 🙂

 

4. Explore the Market

I’m not sure whether or not the market is open all week, but it was definitely poppin’ on the weekend. Tons of vendors had stalls set up selling food, snacks, ice cream, treats, souvenirs, and toys. It honestly felt like the road never ended. Anything you want to buy… it’s here.

 

5. Eat Lunch

I had the best meal at Chapultepec Park, and it was so cheap! Near the zoo entrance and market there is a road with a bunch of small restaurant stands on it.

I ordered chicken milanese, which was a HUGE piece of fried chicken, rice, a salad, french fries, and tortillas for only 75 pesos. Pretty much everyone around us was eating something different, and literally everything looked and smelled amazing. I don’t think you can go wrong with the Mexican food at Chapultepec Park.

 

 

6. Visit a Museum

There’s a museum in Chapultepec Park for every taste. There’s a Museo Tamayo featuring contemporary art, the Museum of Modern Art (free on Sundays), the National Museum of Anthropology (the most visited museum in Mexico City), the National History Museum (located in Castillo de Chapultepec) and others.

We visited the Casa de Lago Cultural Center, located on in a beautiful lake house with an interesting gallery inside. If you’re an art lover, you may need to consider making more than one trip to Chapultepec Park just to see it all.

 

7. Ride a Roller Coaster

This park is so big, there’s an entire theme park in it! We didn’t visit it, but La Feria Chapultepec Magico is a great thing to do in Chapultepec Park if you have kids. Day passes are 200 pesos per person (you can get them for 180 online), and the park has food, drinks, and over 40 different rides and attractions to check out.

 

8. Chill in the Hammock Zone

This is seriously such a good idea, I don’t know why more parks don’t implement it. There’s a hammock zone in Chapultepec Park with poles set up just to hang a hammock on and relax. There are some already there that you can use if they’re not already taken, or you can bring your own to enjoy. Definitely won’t be forgetting mine next time we go!

 

 

Honestly, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are a million more things to do in Chapultepec Park, like ride a bike, practice yoga, meditate, climb a tree, go for a run, ride the carousel, take a nap, the list goes on and on. If you’re only in Mexico City for a short visit, you should definitely prioritize the park as a must-see while you’re here!

All my love,
Di

 

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Tepoztlan Day Trip From Mexico City – Ruins, Views, Markets & More!

The Tepoztlan day trip from Mexico City combines hiking, ruins, views, markets, and food all into one perfectly packaged escape just 1.5 hours from the city. If you want to head out to Tepoztlan for the day, here’s how you should do it, what it will cost, and everything you need to see!

 

 

How to Get to Tepoztlan

The best way to start your Tepoztlan day trip from Mexico City is to take a bus from Terminal Tazqueno. Once there, buy your tickets at the OCC counter. They have busses leaving to Tepoztlan multiple times an hour, and a one-way ticket will run you 130 pesos each.

The trip out is supposed to take an hour and 20 minutes. We hit traffic from a few accidents and ours ended up being closer to two hours, but I don’t think it’s very common. Once we arrived in Tepoztlan, we were dropped off at the gas station/ticket office and had to walk a mile to get to the center. It’s on a nice path along the road though and it really wasn’t too bad.

 

Tepoztlan Day Trip: What To Do

We didn’t know it, but we actually arrived in Tepoztlan during their Carnival celebration! The streets were shut down, and everyone (and I mean everyone) had a beer or a mojito in their hands. Music was blasting, bands were playing, and the vibe was super fun.

 

Visit the Market

I know we just got lucky, and you probably won’t be in Tepoztlan for Carnival. However, the town is still really cute with small churches, the main square, and a large artisanal market set up year round. Buy the traditional clay mugs, different handicrafts, and of course my favorite… street food! We ate giant bbq chicken kebabs, strange patty things (I have no idea what was in them), and corn on the cob, but seriously everything looked really good.

 

 

Check out the Convent

This beautiful convent is worth checking out because entrance is free from 11 am to 5 pm. The green space outside is nice, and the inner courtyard had stunning arches painted with intricate designs. Everything was written in Spanish so I don’t know too much about the convent, but it’s still a nice place to stop by for a few minutes.

 

Hike to the Tepozteco Ruins

This is the main reason why people take a day trip to Tepoztlan. The Tepozteco Pyramid sits on top of a mountain, and while the ruins themselves aren’t super impressive, the view definitely is.

To hike to the ruins, all you have to do is walk down the main road of the town and just… keep walking. The road will turn into a staircase which then turns into a trail. The hike is pretty steep and straight uphill. It’s also CROWDED! Obviously, some of that was due to Carnival, but I still recommend going on a weekday or early morning to avoid the masses.

 

 

If you’re looking for a peaceful experience, this is not for you. You won’t be “one with nature” at all (but you’ll definitely be one with the family of eight that you just. can’t. pass.) Honestly, the crowds kind of made the trek up feel more like a chore than something I had willingly chosen to do, but it was worth the climb in the end.

It took us about an hour and 15 minutes to get to the top. I wore leggings and boots, but lots of people were hiking in dresses, sandals, and even high heels, drinking beers as they went. It was not an easy climb at all (remember, even though it may not feel like it you ARE at high altitude in Mexico City) so definitely go slow and take your time… my legs are still sore two days later!

 

 

One we finally reached the summit, the views were absolutely phenomenal. You have to buy a ticket at the top to see the pyramid, but also just to see the view (lame, I know). The tickets cost 55 pesos each and let you go down to the overlook and hike up to (and on to) the Tepozteco Pyramid.

After about 20 minutes, we headed back the way we came. I bought a fresh strawberry popsicle from a vendor on the trail, and the way down was just a little easier and more enjoyable than the trek up 🙂

 

 

Getting Back to Mexico City

We spent about six hours total in Tepoztlan, exploring the market, climbing to the pyramid, and eating lunch.

After our Tepoztlan day trip, getting back to Mexico City was easy. Just walk back to the gas station and you can buy a ticket there for the next bus. The price 130 pesos per person again, and though they do seem to go back to Mexico City less often than they were coming out, we still only had to wait 30 minutes for the next bus.

 

The Tepoztlan day trip from Mexico City is a really great escape. It’s not too far away and the small town feel, vibrant market, and amazing views from the Tepozteca Temple were definitely worth the trip. I hope this guide helps you make the trip, and if you enjoy it or have any suggestions to add to the to-do list, please comment below!

All my love,
Di

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The Colorful and Crazy World of Wrestling in Mexico City

Wrestling in Mexico City isn’t just an event, it’s a lifestyle. The Lucha Libre (literally “free fight”) shows are a totally unique experience, and the stars are well known around the country. I’ve been living in Mexico for almost six weeks now, and the wrestling in Mexico City is definitely one of my favorite experiences in the country so far.

If you love spandex, screaming, and total disconnect from the real world, I HIGHLY recommend adding Lucha Libre to your Mexico to-do list. Here’s everything you need to know to attend the show!

 

Wrestling Match in Arena Mexico

 

The Essentials

Where: Arena Mexico

When: Friday night shows start at 8:30 pm. You can also go most Sundays at 5 pm, and sometimes on weekdays as well. See the full schedule here.

Length: Two hours

Buying Tickets: You can buy tickets all the way up until the show starts. We opted to go early and buy at the box office to avoid the lines later. Afterwards, we walked to the Zona Rosa district for dinner (about a mile away) and then back for the show. Tickets cost 100 pesos for the cheapest seats and go up to 420 pesos for the front row. We bought seats in row 11 for 220 pesos each.

On top of the entrance cost, we also bought beers at the show. You can get a massive cup with two Coronas in it for 80 pesos, and lots of other snacks like chips, nachos, and even ramen noodles were all cheap.

Also, DON’T FORGET to buy a mask before the show! There are a lot of vendors outside the stadium selling them for anywhere from 40 to 250 pesos each. Daniel and I couldn’t resist and each bought one. I wore it for the whole show, and now have my Halloween costume for this year ready to go 🙂

 

Lucha Libre wrestlers in the ring in Mexico City

 

WTH goes on at a Lucha Libre Show??

Every Friday night show follows this basic outline. The first fight is a 2 vs. 2 match, where one team is “evil” and one team is “good.”

When I was watching the first one, I was like… oh no. Is this something that the internet totally overhyped but actually sucks?? The acting was terrible and no one was really into it.

However, I quickly realized the night starts with the amateurs and new luchadores (wrestlers) who are trying to make it big, so don’t judge the Lucha Libre experience too soon.

Next came the girls. This 3 vs. 3 match was definitely one of my favorites. The Lucha Libre shows should really let the girls do more. They were already way better actors, and they threw each other around, slapped, punched, and pulled hair as we cheered along.

It was really weird because it’s obviously fake, but everyone in Arena Mexico agrees to suspend disbelief and pretend it’s all really happening, which makes for a seriously entertaining atmosphere.

The show continued with seven more matches after the girls. In some, the good guys win, and in others the bad guys do. As the night went on, the audience and the luchadores got crazier and crazier. I promise by the end you will know their names, have your favorites, and be on your feet screaming with the rest of ’em.

One wrestler threw another into the audience, and beat him up in a chair two rows in front of us. Another grabbed a beer from a guy in the front row and threw it all over the other team. A third was held down and unmasked, running from the ring in shame.

Mystico, a major star, came out in an all gold outfit and stole the show, while Marco flaunted his abs in a speedo. Shocker wore a shirt stating he was “1000% Guapo” (agree to disagree there) and another luchador had the audience doing his raise the roof catchphrase after every crazy move.

 

Luchador punching another in the audience

 

Wrestling in Mexico City

Free up your Friday and make plans to go to a Lucha Libre show. One of my favorite things about traveling is experiencing things that you can’t anywhere else, and wrestling in Mexico City is definitely one of them. It’s a cultural staple, and I honestly think it’s right up there with seeing a soccer game in Barcelona or a Broadway show in New York City. The shows are incredibly unique and seriously fun from start to finish.

Have a few beers, relax, and let the colorful and crazy world of wrestling in Mexico City consume you for a few hours. It will definitely be a night you’ll never forget!

All my love,
Di

 

 

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