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A Guide to Entertainment in Mexico City

Palacio de Bellas Artes (Ciudad de México)
Palacio de Bellas Artes (Ciudad de México)
Credit: Flickr / Eneas De Troya / CC BY 2.0

Mexico City is one of the most important cultural and financial cities in the Americas and has a rich heritage that dates back to the Aztecs. As such, pre-Hispanic folk art and music now sit side-by-side with contemporary Spanish and international artistic contributions to make Mexico City one of the most fascinating places to visit. This combination also makes it one of the best places in the world to enjoy a night out.

Club and live music acts often don’t truly kick off until around 11 p.m. or midnight, so if you want to stumble back to your room as the sun is rising, you have come to the right place. You can find all the entertainment you need throughout the city, particularly in the La Condesa and La Roma areas, as well as in the Juarez region, Zona Rosa, and Polanco.

Noteworthy venues include the Centro Cultural de Espana, a place where the hip hang around and dance the night away to DJs and live bands. If you’re looking for a more relaxing vibe, however, check out El Salon Tenampa, a festive cantina where you can listen to traditional Mexican music. Wherever you go, remember to take it easy; you are at a rather high altitude of 7,350ft!

Mexico City has a lot more to offer than just clubs and bars. Cinema is a popular evening activity, and many Hollywood films are released here just a couple of weeks after they are first debuted in the U.S. Insurgentes has six multiplexes, totalling 50 screens. If you want a cultural experience, but still want to watch a movie, head to the Cineteca Nacional, which shows Mexican and international indie films. Here, you can watch films in the open-air for free between October and March at dusk, and if you are really fortunate, you can witness the Muestra Internacional de Cine Festival.

Though Mexican theatre might be lacking, Mexico City is thriving when it comes to the opera, ballet, and classical music scenes. For the ultimate in style and sophistication, try to get tickets for a decent show at the Palacio de Bellas Artes where you can see the Orquestra Sinfonica perform as well as many prestigious operas. The famous “Ballet Folklorico de Mexico”, which is a two-hour-long festival of music and dance, is also held here.

Another awesome venue for opera and classical, the 10,000-seat Auditorio Nacional, also hosts Mexican and international rock and pop stars while the adjoining Lunario del Auditorio is a delight for jazz and folk fans. Elsewhere, the Polyforum and Teatro de los Insurgentes both have their fair share of interesting shows, so if you want to see what’s happening, head down to either of these.

For unique and unusual entertainment activities in New Mexico, head to a game of Jai alai at the Fronton Mexico, the recently reopened art deco building that hosts the games in the season between March and June. Jai alai, which originated in the Basque country hundreds of years ago, is considered the hardest and fastest ball game in the world. Well worth a look! The Fronton Mexico also doubles as a casino, so if you want to try your hand at the renowned “little wheel” roulette, then you can do so in a nice setting here.

What better way to round up New Mexico’s entertainment than with the country’s much-loved entertainment sport: wrestling. You can see the masked Mexican madmen jumping around and delivering neck-breaking moves at the Arena Mexico or Arena Coliseo. There’s nothing quite like it!

Enjoy your trip!

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