June 2022. Although I have been in Mexico before, the last time was in 1994-1995. Twenty-seven years later, Oriol and I are doing a classic tour of the United Mexican States, featuring Mexico City (CDMX); Palenque in Chiapas; Villahermosa in Tabasco; Uxmal, Mérida, Chichen Itza, Ek’ Balam, Valladolid, and a few cenotes (waterholes) in Yucatán and Tulum in Quintana Roo. We returned via Cancún to CDMX and Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.
Coyoacán is a borough in Mexico City. The former village is now the borough’s ‘historic center’. The name comes from Nahuatl and most likely means ‘place of coyotes’, when the Aztecs named a pre-Hispanic village on the southern shore of Lake Texcoco dominated by the Tepanec people.
Against Aztec domination, these people welcomed Hernán Cortés and the Spanish, who used the area as a headquarters during the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire and made it the first capital of New Spain between 1521 and 1523.
The village and later municipality of Coyoacán remained completely independent of Mexico City through the colonial period into the 19th century. In 1857, the area was incorporated into the then Federal District when this district was expanded.
In 1928, the borough was created when the Federal District was divided into sixteen boroughs. The urban sprawl of Mexico City reached the borough in the mid-20th century, turning farms, former lakes, and forests into developed areas, but many of the former villages have kept their original layouts, plazas, and narrow streets and have conserved structures built from the 16th to the early 20th centuries.
This has made the borough of Coyoacán, especially its historic center, a popular place to visit on weekends.
We were there on a Saturday.
Coyoacán is known as an artists’ area. For instance, it houses the Frida Kahlo Museum. The town borough is also the home of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).
After visiting the Frida Kahlo Museum, we had cake and a hot chocolate at Café Ruta de la Seda. We then walked a tour suggested by the ‘Monocle Travel Guide to Mexico City’ and ended our visit at la Cerveceria de Barrio for a margarita.
Coyoacán has very different, much calmer vibe than other neighbourhoods we visited. A nice place to just stroll.
- REVIEW | KLM Amsterdam Schiphol to Mexico City on a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner in economy.
- MEXICO CITY | Zócalo.
- MEXICO CITY | Templo Mayor.
- REVIEW | Hotel Carlota in Mexico City.
- MEXICO | Teotihuacan.
- MEXICO CITY | National Museum of Anthropology or Museo Nacional de Antropología.
- FORMULA 1 MEXICO CITY GRAND PRIX | Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez.
- MEXICO CITY | Museo Nacional de Historia at Castillo de Chapultepec.
- MEXICO CITY | Frida Kahlo Museum.