From the moment I first wandered Parque Mexico, I knew Condesa would be one of my favorite places in Mexico City. I continue to revisit it, finding different reasons to drag Luke there on weekends, meeting new friends in cafes there on weekdays, and heading there on my own whenever the urge strikes me.
I know technically some of the places I mention here are in Hipodromo, but most people I’ve met here seem to let the two meld together and call the whole area Condesa. Either way, together these two form the most beautiful and livable place in the DF.
It’s the greenest neighborhood I’ve found in Mexico City. There are two decent sized parks, tons of cafes and restaurants, quirky people, interesting boutiques and art covered buildings down every side streets. Each time I visit I make sure to get lost on Amsterdam Street and I’m always completely enamored by what I find hiding in the colonial era architecture.
What to Do in Condesa
Where to Stay in Condesa
Condesa is one of the most popular places for tourists to base themselves in the city. There are tons of gorgeous boutique hotels and really affordable Airbnb options. If you want to enjoy a fantastic boutique B&B, I highly recommend Condesa Haus. It’s on a quiet side street less than five minutes walk from Parque Mexico. The staff are really friendly and the breakfast is delicious. I’ve written a full review of the hotel which you can read here:
If you prefer Airbnb, like I usually do, you can see which Condesa Airbnb places I recommend here and here. If you’ve never used Airbnb before, sign up with this link to receive up to $40 off of your first booking.
There are so many cafes in Condesa. Around every corner , ou’ll find a different experience. There are artsy cafes covered in paintings and distressed wooden tables, there are chic cafes with fresh flowers on the tables and wine lists, there are chai cafes and specialty coffee roasters. I try to visit a new spot each time I head to the area. These are a few of my favorites so far.
Rococo – I just tried this place the other day. It’s right near Parque España and they do tons of different varieties of coffee. The menu is literally enormous. Aeropress, pour over, espresso style and tons of others that I’d never even heard of plus a huge tea selection (including Matcha!). They also have tons of non-dairy/plant-based milk for your lattes. This is the sort of cafe you can sit at for ages – beautiful art, friendly staff and wifi (most of the time).
Ojo de Agua – This is one of the most popular cafes in the area, and for good reason. They do amazing breakfast and really great coffee. There are two areas to the cafe. You can either wait for a table at the restaurant side, or head next door to get takeaway. I usually opt for the takeaway option because the wait can be pretty long on a weekend. Their coffee is some of my favorites in the area and they have different milk options for my fellow lactose-intolerant readers. For a light and healthy breakfast option (something that can see hard to find in Mexico City), they have really delicious juices, smoothies, and acai bowls.
Cafe Toscano – The coffee here is SO good. I’ve seen a lot of reviews saying that the service is bad, but I haven’t had a problem the two times I’ve been here, granted one of those times I got my coffee to-go. There are some nice outdoor seating and some food options, but I haven’t tried them (yet) so can’t recommend.
Stroll in the Parks
My personal favorite is Parque España. This D-shaped park is small, but well shaded. Every day of the week dog walkers bring their packs of hounds here to socialize with each other. It’s genuinely the most beautiful and hilarious and strange thing I’ve ever seen. The dogs are usually led to the paths to lay down and take a load off in the shade. Side by side they sit without a leash, without any shouting, without and toys and they just hang out.
The bigger park in the center of Hipodromo is Parque Mexico. This is a great place to relax. There’s a bandstand area where all sorts of activities take place. Sometimes there’s live music, other times quiet meditation or yoga classes. There are tons of benches to sit on and around the edges of the park you’ll find fresh juice stalls and snack vendors.
There are a crazy number of restaurants in this small neighborhood. I often wish I lived in Condesa, but then I think I’d probably spend all of my money eating out everyday. My favorites so far have been:
El Pescadito – Arguably the best fish tacos in the city (I’m still sampling!), this place is only only for lunch from 11-6 (they open at 10 on weekends). It’s always busy and you always have to wait for a table, but you will not regret it.
La Buena Tierra – If you want to take a break from the fried foods and street vendors or if you’re a vegetarian, this is a really great option. The food here is so, so good and there are tons of different options including meat and fish for those that are concerned about there being too much green.
Xel-Ha – This is a really great Yucatan restaurant. All of the food on the menu comes from this region of Mexico. Perfect Mexican comfort food. It’s also a bar and quite a few people have told me it’s a great place to watch soccer matches. I haven’t been during a match yet, but am really interested to check out the ambiance on a game day.
Check out the Local Market
The Condesa Tianguis (weekly market) is famous among locals and tourists. It claims to be the best local market in the city and happens every Tuesday and Friday (it’s larger on Tuesdays).
The produce selection is huge and the vendors are so friendly. If you want to try some fresh, local Mexican fruits and vegetables, this is definitely the place to do it. But if you’re in the mood for something cooked, they’ve got you covered there too. Indulge in tacos, tostadas and flautas. Pull up a stool at any of the many stalls and pick something you haven’t tried before.
The market is located on Pachuca Street between Juan de la Berrera and Veracruz and is open from 9am until 5pm.
Get Lost on the Side Streets
Some of my favorite sights in Condesa have been along quiet residential streets. I’ve stumbled upon bright bursting flower boxes, colorful street art, and amazing architecture simply by taking a left or right down a new lane. Some of my favorite streets to wander along are off of Avenida Amsterdam and Avenida Nuevo León.
These are just some of my favorite things to do in Condesa. What are yours? Let me know in the comments!
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