Growing up in Mexico I never thought anything major about the Teotihuacán Pyramids, I mean, they are there, and that’s it. The first time I went to Mexico City I didn’t even make the effort to visit them, but oh, what a mistake!
The second time in the city I finally made it to the pyramids and I was blown away!
Going to Teotihuacán is a day trip that I now believe everyone should take whenever visiting Mexico City. Is not too far from the city, is a beautiful historic place, and I think one you will never forget.
So, here is everything you need to know to visit the famous Teotihuacán pyramids!
History of Teotihuacán
Teotihuacán comes from the Nahuatl language and translates to “city of gods”, which makes one believe that the place is a religious site only, but it was actually a whole city with a population between 100,000- 200,000 inhabitants.
The city was settled as early as 400 BC (no one really knows when and by who), but it is proven that it was one of the biggest and most powerful cities of Prehispanic Mesoamerica. It was a very influential city that inspired other civilizations around Mesoamerica as was shown by the traces found in different parts of Mexico.
Teotihuacán was found abandoned around 1400 by the Aztecs, and it is estimated that the city collapsed around 600 AD. The burnt artwork and destroyed sculptures found on site point to a probable internal revolution of power- the poor rebelling against the elite, which would inevitably mark the end of the magnificent city of Teotihuacán.
Everything you need to know to plan a day trip to Teotihuacan
How to get there?
If you are comfortable enough you can just rent a car and follow google maps, however, if you don’t want to take on the Mexico City traffic that is completely understandable, so I will explain how to get there by public transportation.
That’s right, you don’t even need to rent a car to get there!
- Buses to Teotihuacán run at least every 30 min from the Central de Autobuses del Norte bus station.
- If you are moving by metro just find this same name stop on the metro.
- A one-way ticket for the metro will cost you 5 pesos or 0.22 USD (!).
And, as with any big city metro, just watch out for your valuables and you should be fine.
To make you feel even more comfortable, in Mexico City the first two wagons of any metro are always designated for women and children only.
After arriving at Autobuses del Norte you have to walk into the station and turn left and go all the way to the end of the station until you find gate 8. Here you will find next to gate 8 the booth with a sign for Autobuses Teotihuacan. There you can purchase your round trip for 100 pesos or about 4 USD.
Make sure to keep the ticket safe as you will need to show it for the way back. Check the time on your ticket and head to your door.
The bus ride to Teotihuacan takes 1 hour. The bus will probably make one stop on the way there so be careful and don’t get out before your time. The driver will scream “Parada final” or “Piramides” once you have arrived at Teotihuacan.
How do I get back?
On the way back you will have to leave Teotihuacan at the same door they dropped you off, which is gate 2, and cross the street (there was not a real sign for the bus stop but you will see people coming together and waiting for the bus). You can always just ask around.
The last time I was there the last bus back to Mexico City from Teotihuacan was at 18:00 hrs, but make sure to ask.
PS: Make sure to have the ticket you purchased at the beginning of your trip, but if not you can buy a new ticket with the bus driver.
How much is Teotihuacan’s entrance fee?
The entrance fee for this magnificent site is only 70 pesos or 3 USD.
Pretty good for a World Wonder!
Make sure to keep your ticket to show at the site’s museum, if you want to also stop there for a visit, and also to be allowed to go out to eat and come back in if necessary.
When is the best time to visit Teotihuacan?
Teotihuacan is a World Wonder and one of our most beloved archaeological sites in Mexico, so it gets crowded fast. The site is open every day of the year from 9:00 to 17:00 hrs.
I would recommend getting there as early as possible and on a weekday to avoid massive crowds. Particularly try to avoid Sundays at all costs, since this is the day that the entrance is free for locals.
What to bring with you to Teotihuacan
Teotihuacan city is one big open space, so no matter when you visit if it’s a sunny day there is really nowhere to hide from the sun, so I would advise you to bring a hat, sunscreen, and lots of water since you will be hiking a bit.
The steps going up the pyramid are not the smoothest so comfortable practical shoes are the best choice!
You can bring your own snacks for the day or with your entrance ticket you are allowed to go out and come back in. Right across the street, there are a variety of restaurants with traditional Mexican food for your post-hike fuel.
- Buses to Teotihuacán leave from Central de Autobuses del Norte Gate 8
- Round trip bus ride – 100 pesos
- Teotihuacán entrance fee -70 pesos
- Open everyday from 9:00 to 17:00
- Bring water, sunscreen, comfortable shoes
- Calculate to spend 4-5 hours there
- There are restaurants to eat right across the street
- There are public bathrooms at the entrance of the site
I hope you found all this information useful on how to plan a day trip to the world-famous Teotihuacan.
Let me know in the comments if there are any other questions I could answer for you, or if you use this post to guide you there let me know how it goes.