The Top Things You Must Do in Polanco, Mexico City

The Soumaya Museum displays the art collection of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim
The Soumaya Museum displays the art collection of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim | © Frank Nowikowski / Alamy Stock Photo
Paula Zamorano Osorio

Fashionable and upmarket, Polanco is one of the most popular neighborhoods in Mexico City. Here you’ll find plenty of shops and restaurants, plus a host of cultural offerings including the Soumaya Museum and Museum of Anthropology. Looking for more? Here are the best things to do in Polanco.

Planning a trip to Mexico? Join Culture Trip’s five-day Mexico City tour, which includes a number of destinations from across the city.

1. Plaza Uruguay


Plaza Uruguay is a small wooded park in the middle of Polanco, a relaxing location perfect for taking a break from the busy city. Inside the plaza, you’ll find a bronze statue of General José Artigas, a Uruguayan leader who is often named the father of the Uruguayan independence movement.

2. Polyforum Cultural Siqueiros

Art Gallery, Museum, Building

Polyforum Siqueiros, Mexico City, Mexico
© Cathyrose Melloan / Alamy Stock Photo
The Polyforum Cultural Siqueiros is a multi-functional exhibition space designed by celebrated Mexican muralist, David Alfaro Siqueiros. The main attraction here is the Forum Universal, which houses La Marcha de la Humanidad (The March of Humanity), the largest mural Siqueiros ever painted.

3. Soumaya Museum


The Soumaya Museum contains the Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim’s private collection of art, sculptures and other items. Painters such as Picasso, Renoir, Dali, Van Gogh and many notable Mexican artists feature in the exhibition. The collection of more than 66,000 pieces has been split into two buildings due to the sheer quantity of items; one in Plaza Loreto, which is itself a stunning piece of modern architecture, and the other in Plaza Carso.

4. Tianguis

Market, Park

Tianguis is the Aztec name given to street markets; these temporary markets (typically weekly or monthly) stretch far back through Mexican history and remain an important part of Mexican culture. Head to the Saturday tianguis in Lincoln Park to buy fresh fruit and vegetables, tacos and other Mexican snacks.

5. National Anthropology Museum

Building, Museum

July 24, 2019: Aztec mask covered with jade at The National Museum Of Anthropology. Mexico City
© Bisual Photo / Alamy Stock Photo
The Museum of Anthropology is the most visited museum in the country, containing one of the largest collections of Mayan artefacts in the world, from pre-Columbian civilizations to the time of the Spanish conquest. The museum is located in a building designed by Pedro Ramirez Vazquez in 1963; a piece of architectural artwork itself.

6. Shopping on Avenida Presidente Masaryk

Shop, Building, Architectural Landmark

Avenida Presidente Masaryk in Polanco in Mexico City, Mexico
© Eman Kazemi / Alamy Stock Photo
Considered the Champs-Élysées of Mexico, Avenida Presidente Masaryk is one of the most expensive, yet most popular, shopping streets in the country. It is the cosmopolitan vibe of this boulevard that has helped Polanco to cement a reputation as an upmarket area. A wander down the avenue is a chance to buy all the top Mexican and international brands.

7. Teatro Telcel


Six floors underground you’ll find the best-equipped auditorium in Latin America, with an advanced sound system so that everything on stage can be heard from any point in the audience as if it were only six meters away. The design of the theater is reminiscent of ancient Aztec temples.

8. Calzada de los Poetas


Within Bosque de Chapultepec, one of the largest city parks in the world, is Calzada de los Poetas. This is a beautiful walkway dedicated to 10 of the most celebrated national poets and writers. The beautiful plants and tranquil natural surroundings add to the magic of the walk, which is alive with the best of Mexican culture, history and poetry.

9. The Rufino Tamayo Gallery

Museum, Art Gallery

Mexico city. Rufino Tamayo Museum.
© J.Enrique Molina / Alamy Stock Photo
The Rufino Tamayo Gallery offers contemporary art within Bosque de Chapultepec. Founder Rufino Tamayo, a Mexican artist himself, opened the museum in 1981 to display the great works of modern artists such as Picasso and Fernand Léger. This gallery was the first of its kind to be built with private funds in Mexico, and is now operated by the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes.

Fancy a trip to Mexico? Book our nine-day premium trip to the Yucátan Peninsula to explore cenotes and jungles, or check out our five-day Mini Trip to Baja California Sur for bohemian beach towns and desert oases. Or discover more Mexican culture when you join our five-day Mini Trip to Mexico’s heartland, or our five-day Mini Trip to Chiapas in Southern Mexico – you’ll experience authentic Mexico with the help of our Local Insider.

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