Mexico will seem like a magical land to imaginative kids; with ancient cities, active volcanoes, colorful crafts, and beautiful beaches, there's plenty to keep all ages interested. This two-week itinerary starts in Mexico City and has you traveling southeast through Puebla and Oaxaca to the paradise of Huatulco on the Pacific Coast—taking in a variety of cultural and natural wonders along the way. Both kids and parents will enjoy the sights, sounds, and tastes of this beautiful and fascinating part of Mexico.


  • See Aztec and Maya treasures at the Museum of Anthropology
  • Marvel at the steaming Popocatepetl volcano from Cholula
  • Soak in the natural springs at Hierve el Agua
  • Let kids loose among the shallow waters and white-sand beaches of Huatulco
  • Help release sea turtles and spot magical bioluminescence along the Pacific Coast

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Mexico City, Explore Coyoacán Mexico City
Day 2 Mexico City Walking Tour & Museum of Anthropology Mexico City
Day 3 Teotihuacán & Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe Mexico City
Day 4 Xochimilco, Coyoacán & Casa Azul Museum Mexico City
Day 5 Transfer to Puebla, City Walking Tour Puebla
Day 6 Tour the Magical Village of Cholula Puebla
Day 7 Cactus Forest Walk, Transfer to Oaxaca Oaxaca
Day 8 Oaxaca City Tour Oaxaca
Day 9 Mitla, Tule Tree & Hierve el Agua Oaxaca
Day 10 Monte Albán, Arrazola & Coyotepec Oaxaca
Day 11 Fly to Santa María Huatulco, Sea Turtle Hatchlings Experience Santa María Huatulco
Day 12 Beach Time in Huatulco Santa María Huatulco
Day 13 Discover the Waterfalls of the Sierra Madre del Sur Santa María Huatulco
Day 14 Fly to Mexico City & Depart   

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Mexico City, Explore Coyoacán

There's plenty for kids to enjoy in Mexico City

Welcome to Mexico City! After your arrival, you'll be met by your driver and privately transferred to your hotel. Check in and spend the rest of the afternoon relaxing after your flight, or head out on a guided walking tour of Coyoacán, one of the city's most picturesque neighborhoods. Characterized by cobblestone streets, colonial architecture, and a bohemian style, this tranquil area will make you feel as if you've been transported outside the city.

Pass through the Callejón del Aguacate, a narrow street with colonial houses that holds local legends and myths, and see the church of La Plaza de la Conchita, where the first mass in the region was celebrated. You'll also stop at the Casa Colorada, home of La Malinche and Hernán Cortés, who settled in this place after the fall of Tenochtitlán. To finish, stroll through the Centennial Garden, where kids can burn off some energy and sample the neighborhood's typical desserts, such as churros and ice cream.

Day 2: Mexico City Walking Tour & Museum of Anthropology

Many exhibits at the National Museum of Anthropology will fascinate kids

Get your bearings with a morning walking tour of the historic city center. Start at the Diego Rivera Mural Museum to learn more about modern Mexican history and art. Stroll through Alameda Central Park, where the kids can run around in the oldest public garden in the Americas. Continue on Madero and Cinco de Mayo Streets to enjoy the historical landmarks and architecture until you reach the main Zócalo, among the largest plazas in the world. Admire the Metropolitan Cathedral, the remains of the Aztec Templo Mayor, and the National Government Palace.

In the afternoon, visit the amazing National Museum of Anthropology, one of the most important museums in Mexico and a world-famous repository of some 600,000 artworks and other objects relating to Mexico. Kids will be fascinated by the Aztec and Maya exhibits on display, and you'll all gain a deeper understanding of the history of this beautiful country. 

Day 3: Teotihuacán & Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Check out the pyramids at Teotihuacán Archaeological Site

This morning, head outside the city to the impressive, sprawling complex of Teotihuacán. The so-called "City of the Gods" was once the largest and most influential city in Mesoamerica. Walk down the Avenue of the Dead and marvel at the imposing stone structures it links, like the Pyramid of the Moon, the Pyramid of the Sun, and the Temple of Quetzalcoatl. Kids will love exploring the vast site and climbing the steep pyramids as they learn more about the city's mysterious origins and rich Maya history.

On your way back to Mexico City, make a stop at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the most visited Catholic church in the world after the Vatican in Italy. The basilica is an icon of the city and a must-visit if you want to learn more about Mexican society.

Day 4: Xochimilco, Coyoacán & Casa Azul Museum

Kids will love the colorful boats at Xochimilco

Today, visit one of the most emblematic areas of Mexico City: the canals of Xochimilco, meaning the "place of the flowers" in Nahuatl. The canals are the last reminders of the rivers that once crossed the valley floor of Tenochtitlan, now modern-day Mexico City. Explore the canals on a colorful trajinera flat-bottomed boat, which kids will especially enjoy as you sit back, relax, and appreciate the views.

Next, you'll see more of the bohemian neighborhood of Coyoacán, or "the place of coyotes" in Nahuatl. Formerly a rural village, Coyoacán has become a rich pocket of art and history in Mexico's capital. Explore this typically Mexican neighborhood with its many museums, cafés, bookstores, and markets, the perfect spot to do some souvenir shopping.

Finally, visit the Casa Azul, where Mexican painter Frida Kahlo spent most of her life. See pictures, photographs, and personal items that belonged to her and fellow artist Diego Rivera, as well as her studio, kitchen, bedroom, and, of course, the beautiful garden in the courtyard. Children are often attracted to the colorful, surrealist style of her art—task them with spotting the monkeys and other animals that appear throughout many of the paintings.

Day 5: Transfer to Puebla, City Walking Tour

Explore UNESCO-listed Puebla

Transfer to the UNESCO-listed city of Puebla today, about three hours from Mexico City. Puebla is considered the birthplace of many traditional Mexican dishes, so it's a dream destination for parents and children who enjoy Mexican food. Check into your hotel in the historical center before heading out on a walking tour of the city, noting the colonial-era architecture and the painted Talavera tiles decorating many buildings. 

You're free to spend the rest of the afternoon and evening as you choose. Kid-friendly activities abound in Puebla: they can scramble over and through vintage train cars and steam engines at the open-air El Museo Nacional de Los Ferrocarriles Mexicanos or see the city from above on the cable car or Ferris wheel. Budding artists might enjoy a Talavera workshop, where they paint their own colorful Puebla-style tiles as keepsakes. For dinner, make a reservation at the El Mural de Los Poblanos restaurant to sample a variety of local fare made from fresh ingredients in a family-friendly setting. 
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Day 6: Tour the "Magical" Village of Cholula

A volcanic backdrop to the Convent of San Gabriel in Cholula

After a hearty breakfast, head to one of the loveliest of Mexico's Pueblos Mágicos, or "Magical Villages." Cholula is the oldest continually inhabited town in America and boasts a dramatic setting next to the mighty peak of Popocatepetl. Kids are sure to love seeing the steaming smoke that still rises from the top of this active volcano. 

The former Franciscan Convent of San Gabriel, one of the oldest in America, is here, as well as the 16th-century Sanctuary of Nuestra Señora de Los Remedios, which sits atop the Aztec-era Great Pyramid. After exploring the town's many sights and taking a walk through the Great Pyramid's maze of tunnels and outer paths, you'll transfer back to Puebla at the end of the day.

Day 7: Cactus Forest Walk, Transfer to Oaxaca

Take a stroll through a cactus forest on today's excursion

Tall, prickly cacti hold great fascination for kids, and today they can enjoy walking through a cactus forest in the Tehuacán-Cuicuitlan Biosphere Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The reserve is about 2.5 hours from Puebla and is a protected natural area where biological, cultural, and historical richness converges. The forests of columnar cacti, endemic to this area, are a highlight. Enjoy a guided hike and learn about the peculiarities of the cacti that grow here, as well as the other species that characterize this ecosystem. 

Later, another 2.5-hour transfer through some of Mexico's most beautiful landscapes will take you to Oaxaca, a city that's famous for its gastronomy—its cuisine has been designated an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. Upon arrival, spend the afternoon exploring at your own pace and choose sights that appeal to you and your kids. Art-loving families should check out the Museum of Contemporary Art (MACO), housed in a 17th-century colonial mansion. Do your kids love crafting? Get some inspiration at the Museo Textil de Oaxaca, which houses traditional Oaxacan crafts and textiles.

Day 8: Oaxaca City Tour

Day of the Dead crafts on display in Oaxaca

After your taster of the previous day, enjoy a full day of exploring Oaxaca with a guided walking tour through its colorful, colonial-style streets. Start at the Monastery of Santo Domingo, which now houses the Museum of Cultures and the Tomb Number Seven of Monte Albán, a rich Mesoamerican archeological site.

Continue on to the Temple of Santo Domingo, then pass the impressive Baroque facades of the Cathedral and the Novo-Hispanic mansions on Alcalá Street to finish at the Plaza de la Constitución. With its authentic Art Nouveau kiosks and colorful markets full of delightful aromas and flavors, it's the perfect place for adventurous eaters to try local snacks like chapulines (toasted grasshoppers), tlayudas (crispy fried tortillas heaped with toppings) and the region's famous mole sauce. End the tour with a treat sure to delight all ages—Oaxaca's distinctive sweet, thick hot chocolate.

Day 9: Mitla, Tule Tree & Hierve el Agua

Checking out Hierve el Agua

After several days of fascinating cultural spots, your family will love today's focus on nature. The first stop on this full-day group excursion is in Santa María del Tule to see the ancient Tree of Tule. This Montezuma cypress tree is approximately 2,000 years old! Continue east to Hierve el Agua (meaning "the water boils"), a collection of rock formations that resemble waterfalls. Kids and parents alike will love bathing in the shallow, mineral-rich waters surrounded by mountains.

On the way back to Oaxaca, stop at a weaving workshop in Teotitlán del Valle, a town famous for its handicrafts and intricately-woven rugs and textiles. Meet the local artisans and learn about the time-honored skills and wool-dying techniques that create these colorful symbols of the region. 

Day 10: Monte Albán, Arrazola & Coyotepec

Traditional Oaxacan alebrije crafts

Today, explore the pre-Columbian Monte Albán Archaeological Site south of Oaxaca City, one of the largest Mesoamerican cities of its time (100 BCE to 200 CE). The great Zapotec hub was developed on top of a hill in the center of the central valleys of Oaxaca and had a great influence on the development of Mesoamerica. Kids will be awed by the grandeur of this vast historic site and enjoy seeing history in its original context rather than just in the halls of a museum.

After, visit the community of Arrazola, where traditional alebrije-painted carvings are made in workshops. Kids will especially like the colorfully painted animals and mythological creatures, and you might want to let them choose one to take home as a souvenir. Finally, visit Doña Rosa's Black Clay Workshop in Coyotepec, where polished black clay vessels are made by hand.  

Day 11: Fly to Santa María Huatulco, Sea Turtle Hatchlings Experience

Kids can help with sea turtle conservation this evening 

Head for the beach today as a quick flight takes you south to Santa María Huatulco. This charming town is part of the coastal paradise known as Huatulco, where the foothills of the Sierra Madre del Sur meet the Pacific Ocean. The area comprises nine idyllic bays, small villages and beach resorts, and the 29,400-acre (11,890 ha) Huatulco National Park. Get settled into your hotel and spend the rest of the day at your leisure. After many busy days of touring and sightseeing, your family will be ready for some well-earned downtime on the beach. 

As night falls, you'll spend an unforgettable few hours with La Escobilla turtle sanctuary, watching as sea turtles come ashore to lay their eggs. Kids will love visiting the hatching pen, where they can learn about sea turtle conservation before helping to release new hatchlings on the beach. 

Days 12: Beach Time in Huatulco

Soak in the sun and sea in Huatulco

Spend today enjoying Huatulco at your own pace, choosing activities and sights that appeal most to your family. Relax at one of the pristine beaches in Huatulco's nine bays during the day, and then head to nearby Punta Cometa for the beautiful sunset.

Other family-friendly activities include snorkeling among the area's sheltered bays and coves, ATV riding through the lush forests, and paddling excursions into the region's biodiverse mangrove swamps. In the evening, you could join a bioluminescence tour to witness a magical natural phenomenon sure to delight kids as phosphorescent phytoplankton illuminates the warm waters with a shimmering glow.

Day 13: Discover the Waterfalls of the Sierra Madre del Sur

Hike to refreshing waterfalls in the jungles around Huatulco

Grab your bathing suits and lace up the kids' walking shoes for today's adventure into the wild jungles of the Sierra Madre del Sur. Your excursion starts with a visit to a local rural community. After a warm welcome, set off on a gentle guided hike to search for the region's magical waterfalls, stopping at plenty of spectacular viewpoints along the way. After plenty of time to enjoy the crystal clear waters of the falls (and cool off with a refreshing dip), you'll head back through the jungle for a memorable lunch, with lots of kid-friendly local dishes like buttered rice, handmade tortillas cooked on a comal griddle, and black beans.

The afternoon takes you back to Huatulco, where you can spend your final day in Mexico relaxing on the white-sand beaches, working on your sandcastle skills, or exploring more of the area at your leisure.

Day 14: Fly to Mexico City, Depart 

Goodbye, beautiful Mexico!

All good things must come to an end, and today it's time to catch a flight back to Mexico City and then onward to your next destination. Depending on your time of departure from Huatulco, you might have time for one final swim or beach walk before you're transferred to the airport. Have a safe trip!

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Looking for more inspiration for your family trip to Mexico? Check out these other Mexico itineraries, explore different ways to spend two weeks in Mexico with the family, or discover the best time to visit Mexico.


Map of Family Tour of "Magical" Mexico: From Mexico City to the Pacific Coast - 14 Days
Map of Family Tour of "Magical" Mexico: From Mexico City to the Pacific Coast - 14 Days