With over 22 million people calling Mexico City home, the city has quickly become the largest metropolitan area in the Western Hemisphere. There’s plenty to see and do in the city, and it’s tough to do it all in one trip. One of the places that I recommend visiting first when visiting Mexico City is Castillo de Chapultepec (Chapultepec Castle).
Know before you go
After visiting Mexico City several times, most attractions and businesses were operating at a reduced capacity and limited hours, so I never really had a chance to visit Castillo de Chapultepec until recently.
COVID-19 has caused many facilities across Mexico City to either completely close, or require temperature checks and face masks, so make sure to confirm operating hours and daily quotas before making plans to visit any attractions. Let’s get into everything that you’ll need to know about Castillo de Chapultepec.
Bosque de Chapultepec is a giant city park that spans over 1,700+ acres, located in the center of Mexico City. It’s located right off of Paseo de la Reforma which is a wide avenue that runs diagonally across the heart of the city better known as the Champs-Élysées of Mexico city. Depending on where you are staying you could possibly walk (if you’re staying in the Reforma Neighborhood) or take a quick Uber ride to the park.
You’ll have to walk for about 5-10 minutes through the park if you enter on the side where Centro de Cultura Digital is located (by the subway) , and then an additional 5-10 minutes to get to Castillo de Chapultepec perched directly on top of the hill,
Hours and Admission
Due to current health regulations, the museum may open temporarily from Tuesday to Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. On Sundays, the museum will open from 9:00 a.m. until the quota of 10,000 people per day is reached. It takes at least an hour and a half to see the museum, so I recommend that you arrive early like I did in order to make the most out of your visit.
Pro Tip: Heads up! Many of the museums in Mexico City are closed on Mondays, for maintenance, and cleaning. This is definitely something to consider when creating your itinerary. Castillo de Chapultepec is not open on any Monday of the year.
Address: Primera Sección del Bosque de Chapultepec s/n San Miguel Chapultepec, C.P. 11580
General Admission: $85.00 Mexican pesos ($4.23 USD)
Due to the restrictions, tickets cannot be purchased in advance, and must be purchased the same day at the box office, located at the beginning of the ramp that leads up to the museum. Make sure you bring Mexican pesos to pay for the ticket, which is cash only.
Who gets in for free?
Children under 13 years old, people over 60 years old, teachers and students with valid credentials, pensioners and retirees with credentials and people with disabilities. On Sundays the entrance is free for all the national public and for foreigners residing in Mexico.
History of Chapultepec Castle
This castle served as the official residence of Emperor Maximilian (I) from 1864 to 1867. The castle now houses Museo Nacional de Historia (The National Museum of History), offering visitors a chance to discover more about the nation’s history as you explore the various sections of the castle.
It still reigns as the only castle in North America that actually served as a residence for royalty; Mexican Emperor Maximilian I and Empress Carlota lived there from 1864 until he was executed three years later.
The Castle underwent refurbishments in a Neoclassical style, which supposedly made the palace more habitable. Thanks to royalty living there, on what were still the outskirts of Mexico City at the time, the city developed a nearby thoroughfare, which we now know as the bustling Paseo de la Reforma.
Fun Fact: Baz Luhrmann’s ‘Romeo + Juliet’ filmed in 1996 starring Leonardo DiCaprio was partially filmed at the castle.
Let me know if this information was helpful, and what your favorite attraction in Mexico City is. I look forward to hearing from you, and I’m always here to answer any questions you may have!
Until next time,