Explore volcanoes, pyramids, and the colorful neighborhoods of Mexico City during this active 10-day adventure. Float down the ancient Aztec canals of the capital before heading to the nearby Teotihuacán pyramids for a biking tour. Hike around the famous "Smoking Lady" of Popocatépetl volcano, sweat out your impurities at a traditional temazcal in Amanalco, and spend a night at the base of Nevado de Toluca in a cozy mountain cabin.


  • Taste "volcano" tacos in the lively neighborhood of Navarte
  • Bike between the ancient pyramids at Teotihuacán
  • In Amanalco, get purified in a traditional sweat lodge
  • Trek to the sacred crater lakes of the Nevado de Toluca volcano

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Mexico City, Food Tour of Navarte Mexico City
Day 2 Cruise Through Xochimilco, Coyoacán Neighborhood Tour Mexico City
Day 3 Biking in Teotihuacán, Transfer to Cholula Cholula
Day 4 Hiking in Iztaccíhuatl-Popocatépetl National Park Cholula
Day 5 Transfer to Tepoztlán, One of Mexico's Pueblos Mágicos Tepoztlán
Day 6 Transfer to Amanalco, Temazcal Experience Amanalco
Day 7 Parque Nacional Nevado de Toluca Trek (Day 1) Amanalco
Day 8 Parque Nacional Nevado de Toluca Trek (Day 2), Butterfly Sanctuary Amanalco
Day 9 Transfer to Mexico City, Mezcal Tasting & Lucha Libre Experience  Mexico City
Day 10 Depart Mexico City  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Mexico City, Food Tour of Navarte

Private Experience: Tacos, Chelas & Mezcal in Narvarte
Taste artisanal mezcal when you arrive in Mexico City

¡Bienvenidos a México! Your driver will be waiting at the Mexico City International Airport to transfer you to your hotel in Mexico City. One of the largest urban centers in the world, Mexico's capital traces its roots back to the ancient Aztec city of Tenochtitlan, which the Spanish built upon in the 16th century. Today, the sprawling metropolis overflows with lively neighborhoods, historical sites, and culinary delights.

After you settle in, you'll have time to explore the city independently. Immerse yourself in the local culture in neighborhoods like Roma, where you'll find Art Deco architecture and excellent restaurants, or San Ángel, with its cobblestone streets, art galleries, and sidewalk cafés. Relax in the green spaces of Chapultepec Park or Alameda Central before digging into the city's famous gastronomy.

Meet your local guide for a food tour of the trendy neighborhood of Navarte, known throughout the city for its tacos. Begin the tour at a neighborhood taquería specializing in "volcanoes," a crispy, cheese-and-peppers-topped tortilla cooked over a charcoal flame. From there, you'll sample tacos al pastor and tacos de suadero (slow-cooked beef brisket) from long-established street vendors. Experience Mexico City's lively cantina culture and taste a flight of small-batch artisanal mezcals with the guidance of a local expert.

Day 2: Cruise Through Xochimilco, Coyoacán Neighborhood Tour

Xochimilco canals
Take a ride through the colorful canals of Xochimilco

Discover the remnants of the Aztec Empire's vast water transport system at the "floating gardens" of Xochimilco. Spend several hours traversing the beautiful, festive canals aboard a traditional trajinera (typical canal boat) with an expert guide. Learn all about the history and culture of the canals as the colorful gondola-esque boats take you past floating food vendors, artisans selling their crafts, and mariachi bands.

Your tour along the canals will also take you to several different chinampas, small islands built into the canal that make up an agricultural system, known as the most efficient and sustainable in the world. Visit the local ecotourism center to learn about the production of vegetables on the islands, and visit the wildlife refuge dedicated to preserving the famous Mexican salamander, the axolotl, endemic to the area.

Later, head to the south of Mexico City for the picturesque, bohemian neighborhood of Coyoacán, characterized by its cobblestone streets and colonial architecture. Stroll the lovely Jardín Hidalgo, the borough's central plaza, and get lost among craft stores, art events, churches, and galleries. Around the plaza, explore the famous Casa del Risco, now the Isidro Fabela Cultural Center. The Parroquia San Jacinto is on the west side, along Juarez Street, known for its gorgeous, landscaped atrium.

Day 3: Biking in Teotihuacán, Transfer to Cholula

Aerial view of the historic site
Explore the awe-inspiring pyramids of the ancient city of Teotihuacán

Wake up early for a trip outside Mexico City to the archaeological site of Teotihuacán. The UNESCO-listed ruins of this ancient Mesoamerican city, also known as "The City of the Gods," date back to 100 BCE. Explore this once-grand city via bicycle, beginning with a tour along the Calzada de los Muertos (Causeway of the Dead). Cycle between essential buildings such as the Palacio de Quetzalpapálotl, famous for its murals (don't miss the Mural de Puma!), as well as the famous Pirámide del Sol (Pyramid of the Sun) and Pirámide de la Luna (Pyramid of the Moon). 

At the end of your tour, visit a local workshop specializing in the pre-Hispanic drink, pulque (fermented agave sap). After you've tasted the kombucha-like beverage, you'll be transferred to Cholula, located approximately two hours away in the Puebla region. Once you arrive at your hotel, you'll have the rest of the evening free to explore one of Mexico's most historically significant towns, known both for its archaeological ruins and colonial architecture. 

Day 4: Hiking in Iztaccíhuatl-Popocatépetl National Park

Hike in the Iztaccíhuatl-Popocatépetl National Park
Hike around the base of Mexico's famous volcano, the active Popocatépetl

You'll have another early start this morning for your transfer to the incredible mountains of Iztaccíhuatl-Popocatépetl National Park. This park holds two of Mexico's tallest mountains: the famous active volcano Popocatépetl (meaning "Smoking Woman" in the Aztec language Nahuatl) and the snowcapped Iztaccíhuatl (Sleeping Woman). Depending on your preference and experience, you'll take one of the different trails through the park.

Whichever way you hike, you'll gain sweeping views from the Paso de Cortés, which offers glimpses of the volcanic peaks, surrounding landscape, glaciers, forests, and valleys. As you walk along the trail, take notice of the native flora and fauna, including many species of fungi and, if you're lucky, the endangered volcano rabbit. 

Plan your trip to Mexico
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

You'll be accompanied by a local, experienced guide familiar with the park and its trails, who will provide valuable information and ensure your safety in the mountains. Once you make it back down, your driver will be waiting to transfer you back to Cholula.

Day 5: Transfer to Tepoztlán, One of Mexico's Pueblos Mágicos

Free afternoon in Tepoztlán
Explore the myth-laden Tepoztlán, one of Mexico's "Magical Villages"

Today, you'll leave Cholula and hop aboard your transfer to the enchanting village of Tepoztlán. Known as a town of myth (considered the birthplace of Quetzalcoatl, the Aztec feathered serpent god), history, and culture, this mountain village, designated a "Pueblo Mágico," is located on the mystical slopes of Tepozteco National Park.

Walk through Tepoztlán's colorful and cobblestone streets, visit the UNESCO-listed Church of Natividad, and discover ancient Maya, Olmec, and Zapotec artifacts at Carlos Pellicer Pre-Hispanic Art Museum. On the weekend, the Mercado Artesanal de Tepoztlán is a must-visit for souvenirs, handicrafts, and other locally-made goods. It's also an excellent place to try local foods, including the ancient dish of tlaltequeadas (squash blossom fritters). 

For incredible views of the town and valley, the archaeological site of El Tepozteco is well worth the arduous climb. The site contains a pyramid dating back to the 13th century and is a short but strenuous hike, best done in the morning. End the day with tapas and mezcal at the open-air bar, La Cueva. 

Day 6: Transfer to Amanalco, Temazcal Experience

Head to Amanalco for a unique Temazcal experience
Immerse yourself in a traditional Mesoamerican temazcal, an ancient sweat lodge tradition

Enjoy the mountainous scenery on your three-hour transfer from Tepotzlán to the ecotourism hotspot of Amanalco de Becerra. Surrounded by pristine nature and picturesque landscapes, this small town is often a jumping-off point for outdoor adventures. Walk the curving pathways of Ravine Amanalco, which wind around ancient trees lining a river, or grab a bike to explore the trails of San Lucas

After settling in, meet your local guide for a "forest bath" (a relaxing walk through the woods) on nearby trails. Once you've fully unplugged in the surrounding nature, head back into town for a traditional temazcal (sauna) experience. A local shaman will lead you through this purification ritual, which takes place in a dome-shaped sweat lodge designed to be primarily in the dark. The ritual consists of four stages, symbolizing air, earth, wind, and fire, all promoting cleansing of the mind, body, and soul. 

Afterward, you'll return to your accommodations in Amanalco to prepare for tomorrow's multiday trek. 

Day 7: Parque Nacional Nevado de Toluca Trek (Day 1)

Embark on two-day trekking adventure to the Amanalco Basin
Begin a two-day trek from Amanalco to the Nevado de Toluca volcano 

Leave the quaint town of Amanalco behind to begin your two-day trek through the Parque Nacional Nevado de Toluca, which covers miles of forests surrounding the Nevado de Toluca (Xinantécatl) volcano, Mexico's fourth-highest peak at 15,354 feet (4,680 m). Before you start, your guide will give you a brief orientation, outlining the itinerary and safety precautions. Hike through lush forests and meadows, witnessing the area's natural beauty, stopping for lunch along the way.

At the end of the day, you'll camp in cozy mountain cabins at the base of the Corral de Piedra mountains. Enjoy a locally sourced, homemade dinner around the campfire (it can get chilly in these hills!), gaze at the night sky, and rest up for your hike tomorrow, which will take you to the volcano's crater. 

Day 8: Parque Nacional Nevado de Toluca Trek (Day 2), Butterfly Sanctuary

Marvel at the millions of monarchs at a Mexican butterfly sanctuary

Enjoy a campfire breakfast before your trek along the Nevado de Toluca Rim Crater Trail, which takes you along two lakes and provides incredible views of the volcano itself. The volcano's Nahuatl name, Xinantécatl, is often translated as "The Naked Man," thanks to its stark beauty. The well-traveled path leads to the famous crater lagoons, the only ones of their kind in Mexico, Laguna del Sol and Laguna de la Luna. These lakes are considered sacred, and the number of archaeological discoveries in the area suggests they have been the site of ceremonies dating back to pre-Hispanic times. 

Your epic trek will end back in the valley, with a stop (between December and February) at the incredible Reserva de Biosfera de la Mariposa Monarca (Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve). Monarch butterflies migrate thousands of miles down from as far as Canada every year to spend the winter in this one small region of Mexico. The millions of butterflies weigh down branches, fill the air, and turn the trees themselves orange—a once-in-a-lifetime site. 

Day 9: Transfer to Mexico City, Mezcal Tasting & Lucha Libre Experience 

A display of colorful Lucha Libre masks
Immerse yourself in the colorful, dramatic world of Mexican wrestling

Today, you'll experience more of Mexico City as you dive into the colorful world of lucha libre (Mexican wrestling). Part sporting match, part theater, and brimming with acrobatics and drama, this popular spectacle is a popular attraction for Chilangos (Mexico City residents) of all ages.

First, meet your tour guide in front of the majestic Palacio de Bellas Artes, a white-marbled concert hall. From there, you'll visit a traditional Mexican cantina, where you'll taste mezcal and homemade guacamole. From here, you'll set out on a walking tour to the Aréna Mexico, or the "Catedral de Lucha Libre," while your guide amazes you with stories of "El Santo" and "Blue Demon," two of the biggest stars in the history of this wrestling style. 

Once you arrive at the Aréna Mexico, enjoy a dramatic battle between the técnicos (heroes) and the rudos (villains). Cheer on your favorite wrestler while you experience one of Mexico City's favorite traditions among beer vendors, snacks, and wrestling masks.

Day 10: Depart Mexico City

Mexico City's Palacio de Bellas Artes
Enjoy a final night in Mexico City at the beautiful Palacio del Bellas Artes

Say adiós to Mexico and Mexico City as your driver transfers you to Mexico City International Airport so you can catch your flight home—or to wherever your path takes you next. Safe travels!

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Map of Hiking, Biking & Volcano Adventures Around Mexico City - 10 Days
Map of Hiking, Biking & Volcano Adventures Around Mexico City - 10 Days