The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City

What are the safest places to stay in Mexico City?  I literally typed that exact phrase into Google before my trip!  Mexico City seems to have a bad reputation with foreign tourists: it’s overwhelmingly large, with potentially dangerous neighborhoods lurking around every corner.  This was my “perception,” at least ~ but it turns out, Mexico City felt far safer than I’d imagined, with plenty of highly walkable neighborhoods such as Roma, Condesa, Zona Rosa, the Zocalo, & upscale Polanco.  In this post, we’ll focus on finding great, safe hotels within each of these parts of town.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

Mexico City gets a bad rap in terms of safety ~ but I found it a colorful, lively city filled with gorgeous architecture, streets teeming with people, & lovely hotels in numerous neighborhoods.

Overview of Mexico City Neighborhoods

For first-time & even return visitors to Mexico City, I would concentrate your hotel search on these six parts of town for reasons of both safety, as well as proximity to the city’s most famous sites & great nightlife.

 

  1. Centro Historico/Zocalo: This is where most of Mexico City’s finest historic buildings are, including the Zocalo & the beautiful Palace of Fine Arts.  If you love history & museums, consider staying here: but just know that the Zocalo really empties out at night & may not feel as safe then. 
  2. Roma: Just south of Centro Historico in a great, central location is Roma; this is probably the hippest part of town currently, with great nightlife, cafes, & pretty parks galore.  Roma is a highly walk-able area, & feels safer at night than the Zocalo because it’s usually bustling with people at all hours. 
  3. Condesa: South of Roma lies its sister neighborhood, which is also having a serious “moment” right now.  With its graceful, colorful buildings & architecture, Condesa is a great spot for first-time Mexico City travelers to stay.  It felt slightly more upscale to me than Roma (& a little less hipster). 
  4. Zona Rosa: This is the LGBTQ, nightlife-loving part of town ~ which means, LOTS of people are walking around here in the day & definitely at night!  The downside: Zona Rosa isn’t the quietest part of town, but it has a great location just west of Roma, along the busy Paseo de la Reforma, which leads right into Chapultepec Park. 
  5. Polanco: This is the swankiest part of town, & also borders Chapultepec Park along its western side, making it easy walking distance to the park’s world-famous museums.  Polanco is also where you’ll find some of the best bars & restaurants, making it great for foodies who can afford to stay here!
  6. Coyoacan: Perhaps the most authentic of all these spots is Coyoacan, which is the southern-most district I’m covering here.  Because of its southern location, its slightly more difficult to reach the main sights in town ~ but you’ll be close to the Frida Kahlo museum here, as well as the incredible Mercado Coyoacan.

Mexico City International Airport

Zocalo

Condesa

Roma

Polanco

Zona Rosa

Coyoacan

1) Historic Center/Zocalo

The closest part of Mexico City to the International Airport is the Historic Center of town, also called the Zocalo.  Here, you’ll find some of the city’s oldest buildings, beautiful architecture, & the oldest park in the city: lovely Alameda Park, next to the Palacio de Bellas Artes.  The streets here teem with people (both locals and tourists) during the day, as many work in this district.  But it’s much quieter at night, & can even feel desolate ~ which doesn’t make it my top choice if you’re looking for great restaurants & nightlife. 

My top two hotel picks for this area have their own gorgeous (rooftop!) restaurants…so the good news is: you won’t have to walk far for dinner. Check out the historic Gran Hotel Ciudad de Mexico, with its amazing location overlooking the Zocalo, or the romantic & slightly more modern Hotel Zocalo Central.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl WHo Travels the World

Alameda Park is the oldest in Mexico City, & lies right in the heart of the Zocalo ~ making it a great place to stroll & people-watch.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Is Mexico City Safe for Solo Travel? Girl Who Travels the World

You’ll get grand views like this when staying at the Gran Hotel Ciudad de Mexico. 

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

The Zocalo Central Hotel is my *top pick* for hotels in the Zocalo area: if anything, simply visit its grand rooftop restaurant for killer views & drinks!

2) Roma Norte = Hip & Cool

Roma, particularly Roma Norte, is currently the hippest spot in Mexico City.  As such, there’s NO shortage of great corner restaurants, wine bars, & cafes that spill out onto the streets of Roma’s many small parks ~ all which give Roma a very friendly, safe feel.  Because this part of town has so much local flavor & charm, I highly recommend staying in a boutique hotel here: not a chain.  Then you can really soak in the characteristic Mexican architecture & food, as its being interpreted in modern new ways here.

Safest Areas of Mexico City to Stay In, Girl Who Travels the World

Tree-lined streets, colorful architecture, plentiful parks, & great neighborhood bars characterize Roma Norte.

Safest Areas to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World, Roma Norte

Cheerful bars, restaurants, cafes, & wine shops line the streets of Roma Norte, beckoning you in with their delightful decor & aromatic aromas…

My top three hotel picks for Roma Norte are the charming Casa Goliana La Roma, the oh-so-pretty Nima Local House Hotel, & the gorgeously sleek & modern La Valise Hotel.

Is Mexico City Safe for Solo Travel? Girl Who Travels the World, Casa Goliana, Roma, Mexico City

Casa Goliana is a quiet, elegant choice for a stay in the hip Roma neighborhood.

 

Safest Areas of Mexico City to Stay In, Girl Who Travels the World

The Nima Local House Hotel sits right in the center of Roma Norte, featuring open, airy decor with plenty of style ~ & lots of plants…

Safest Areas of Mexico City to Stay In, Girl Who Travels the World

One of the most modern hotels on this list is La Valise, which offers unique open-air, sleekly-designed rooms.

3) Condesa = Colorful Charm

If you’re looking for a slightly quieter neighborhood than Roma, but with similar architecture & character: try staying in Condesa.  This is a lovely area to walk in, & here you’ll find cute day spas, quiet roundabouts flanked by historic homes, & just a generally peaceful vibe with plenty of upscale cafes & restaurants.  Similar to Roma, boutique hotels are the name of the game here; some beautiful options include the vibrant Maria Condesa Boutique Hotel ($170+/night) & the tres chic Hotel Condesa DF.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

The vibe at Maria Condesa is quirky & colorful ~ much like Mexico City itself.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

Visit the chic rooftop bar at the Hotel Condesa DF, located right in the heart of Condesa.

 

4) Zona Rosa = Nightlife!

Zona Rosa is where I stayed, at the delightfully colorful Room Mate Valentina Hotel ($58+/night).  This neighborhood has a more urban, slightly less upscale feel than others mentioned.  It’s also home to the gay district (which I didn’t realize when I booked my hotel), & it’s HAPPENING here at night!  Rarely will you be alone on the streets in Zona Rosa, & its central location ensures that you can walk to both Chapultepec Park & the Zocalo (if you like longer walks!) along beautiful Paseo de la Reforma.  Some of the city’s most high-end hotels are also located here, right next to Chapultepec Park, such as the St. Regis Mexico City ($469+/night) & the Four Seasons ($225+/night)

There are plenty of restaurants (& lots of fast food!) in Zona Rosa: but better restaurants can be found in Polanco & Roma Norte. 

 

Safest Areas to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

This picture sums up Zona Rosa well: it’s not as charming or tree-lined as Roma & Condesa, but there are ALWAYS people walking around here on its wide, pedestrian-friendly streets. Food here is more of the “fast food” variety, though you can find some hidden gems & higher-end fare along Paseo de la Reforma.

Safest Areas to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

The Roommate Valentina is known for its VERY colorful, distinctly-decorated rooms. Downside: the street they’re on can get quite noisy at night!

Safest Areas to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

It’s hard to go wrong at any Four Seasons: but the one in Mexico City is particularly stunning, & located at the entrance to Chapultepec Park.

5) Polanco = Posh!

The perfect way to describe Polanco is as the “Beverly Hills” of Mexico City.  The best meals I had were in Polanco (thanks to the advice of friends who live there!), & along certain streets: you’ll find one upscale, oh-so-trendy restaurant after another.  There’s plenty of shopping here, local farmer’s markets, hair salons (I even saw a renowned dermatologist while in Polanco) & of course, plenty of upscale hotels…like the JW Marriott ($429+/night), & a more fun, boutique-y choice: The Wild Oscar ($245+/night)

Bonus: In Polanco, you’re within walking distance of Chapultepec Park, the “Central Park” of Mexico City, with its numerous museums, castles, & famous central lake.

Safest Areas to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

Polanco is home to chic shopping malls, high-end boutiques, & some of the best restaurants in town. Not to mention, some of the city’s most high-end accommodations.

Safest Areas to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

Polanco flanks Chapultepec Park, the largest in Mexico City & home to famous sights like the Museo de Anthropologie (home to the original Mayan calendar)!

Is Mexico City Safe for Solo Travel? Girl Who Travels the World, Wild Oscar Hotel, Mexico City

The Wild Oscar Hotel in upscale Polanco gives you a little more quirk & character than larger, chain hotels ~ at about 1/2 the price.

Safest Areas to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World

The JW Marriott lives up to the swanky Polanco vibes with its sleek outdoor pool & spacious, modern rooms. This is a popular choice for American travelers.

6) Coyoacan = Cultura!

Coyoacan = Culture.  Or “cultura,” as they say in Mexico.  This is the most authentic district on this list, with its charming cobblestone streets, artisan markets, bohemian flair, & COLORFUL buildings & churches!  It’s also home to the hard-to-miss, bright blue Museo de Frida Kahlo, as well as several parks, such as the Jardin Centenario.  The only downside to staying in Coyoacan is that you’re quite a bit further from the airport & the Zocalo area, making for longer taxi rides ~ but you’re closer to other amazing Mexico City sights, like the Xochimilco Floating Gardens. 

My top hotel pick for Coyoacan is one that reflects its unique, artisan feel: the quaint & cozy Casa Jacinta Guest House.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World, Coyoacan

Many bars & restaurants in Coyoacan pay homage to Frida Kahlo, the famous artist who made Coyoacan her home.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World, Coyoacan

See Kahlo’s work space at the Museo de Frida Kahlo.

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City, Girl Who Travels the World, Coyoacan

The Casa Jacinta Guest House is a lovely, safe place to stay in Coyoacan ~ & offers a definite artisan, understated flair, which is characteristic of this neighborhood.

 

The Safest Places to Stay in Mexico City

I hope I’ve helped you hone in on some of the safest places to stay in the huge metropolis that is Mexico City!  I’ve written other articles on this fascinating place, including one on safety, & one on great parks for travelers.  While I was there, we also did an amazing hike about an hour from the city to the hilltop ruins of Tepoztlan ~ which I highly recommend for all adventure lovers!

xoxo Noelia

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