Ballet and pre-hispanic culture in Mexico.

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1. Posted by GAPYEAR1949 (Budding Member 2 posts) 45w Star this if you like it!


We are on the American leg of our slow post-retirement world tour .... currently in Argentina.

We'd like to spend most of May in Mexico - our main interests are above. Any tips/suggestions would be very welcome!

We are thinking Mexico City/Monterrey/Guadalajara... but are open to other thoughts.

It is proving very difficult to access info and make advance bookings for dance and ballet performances online - we can read Spanish but it is slow! Is this difficulty normal?

We are too old for Hostelling, but so far airbnb and midrange hotels have served us well. Ideas welcome!

Best wishes,

Balu and Simon

2. Posted by Teoni (Respected Member 647 posts) 45w Star this if you like it!

Make sure you give yourself time for Mexico City it is huge and there is a lot to experience. I have only travelled south of Mexico City but I would absolutely recommend it. My favourite places were Chippas state, Puebla City, Tlacotalpan and Merida where I recommend trying the indigenous restaurants.

If you are looking for pre Hispanic ruins you really need to visit Chichen Itza. I won't say it was my favourite but I do believe they are a must see. While you're in Mexico City there are a handful remnants of the old Aztec capital Templo Mayor being the most famous. Nearby is Teotihuacan (whom the Aztecs believed were gods). Mayan ruins of Palenque is beautiful set amongst the jungle as is the lesser known (and culture unknown) El Tajin. Around Uxmal there are set of large Mayan ruins but the area itself is quite small. If you don't want spend to much time walking around, they make great quick visits. Another one I think is a must is the Zapotec ruins of Monte Alban, if for no other reason than it's spectacular location. Another one worth visiting for its spectacular location is the Aztec temple of El Tepozteco however this one requires quite a hike, though if your looking for something adventurous but less strenuous you could take the boat trip to Yaxchilan. It is famous for its hieroglyphics depicting step by step instructions for sacrifices and blood letting. Tulum is also quite pretty but wow is it crowded. Along that coast there are some smaller and less visited ruins you can check out. For something a little different you might want to visit La Venta where you have the Olmec pyramid. The sight itself isn't well preserved but it is interesting to see the precursor of pyramids in ancient Mexico. The statues on site including the famous Olmec heads are recreations with the real ones moved to a museum in Villahermosa.

Unfortunately I can't help you with ballet as that is not an interest of mine though I understand the Mexican ballet company is pretty famous. As for accommodation you do get a lot of bang for your buck. We stayed in a mix of hotels and apartments and our budget was mid range (by Mexican standards) and I can't think of any accommodation that was uncomfortable or bad. Though if you are looking to splurge on accommodation Mexico is the place to do it as you will get a lot for not much in price.

[ Edit: Edited on 12-Mar-2018, at 07:15 by Teoni ]

3. Posted by AikasMX (Budding Member 2 posts) 45w Star this if you like it!

Hello there!

Well, as an advice I think that your route must be a little bit different:

Maybe if you came from South America, you could arrive at "Playa del Carmen". From this fantastic beach, you could go to Tulum and Cobá, pretty beautiful prehispanic places. Also there, you can go to Xel-Ha, where you can enjoy nature and prehispanic "shows" - snip -

After that, you could then go to Mexico City. Here you can enjoy the ruins of the Great Tenochtitlan, near the "Centro Histórico". Also, here at Mexico City, you could visit "Bellas Artes" Palace, that is the place where most of the ballet presentations are shown. In this page: - snip - you could check the calendar for presentation dates.

Also, near Mexico City as Teoni said before, you MUST visit Teotihuacan. It is amazing, you must not miss this place. Also if you stay at a Mexico City Hotel, normally there are tours for foreigners.

In Monterrey and Guadalajara there is not very important Prehispanic places but are beautiful cities to visit, I do not recommend Monterrey too much but certainly will bring you close to America.

Airbnb has very good options and also there are some cheap hotels. You can try hotel websites for midrange hotels, just dont go below 3 stars because maybe will be too uncomfortable for you.

Some security advice:
Never take a taxi on the street, always at "Sites" or called by hotel. Uber works in Mexico City but not in Cancún or Playa del Carmen. Remember to have bottle water and solar protector because certainly is beginning the hot season.

[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]

4. Posted by GAPYEAR1949 (Budding Member 2 posts) 45w Star this if you like it!

Thank you Teoni and AikashMX

Great tips which we shall take on board. It will help us enormously to plan and enjoy our stay in Mexico. We will now and try to stay there a bit longer than planned = thanks for your tip on that, Teoni. Uber it will be. Yes bottled water too - been good in Argentina and Chile where tap water is safe. Best wishes, Balu and Simon.

5. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 847 posts) 45w Star this if you like it!

There are interesting ruins (and even some current Mayan people) in Belize and just across the border there is Tikal. I don't know that there is much in the way of ballet there though.

6. Posted by Teoni (Respected Member 647 posts) 44w Star this if you like it!

Yes bottled water too - been good in Argentina and Chile where tap water is safe.

If you are travelling for a long time you might want to invest in a filter bottle. I used a filter bottle in Mexico, Belize and Guatemala filling up straight from the tap. It was so much more convenient and saves a bunch of money:).