A weekend trip from the capital to Tepoztlán rarely disappoints. This beautifully situated small town with a well-preserved historic center surrounded by soaring jagged cliffs is just 80km south of Mexico City. As the birthplace of Quetzalcóatl, the omnipotent serpent god of the Aztecs over 1200 years ago (according to Mesoamerican legend), Tepoztlán is a major Náhuatl center and a mecca for New Agers who believe the area has a creative energy.
This pueblo mágico boasts an impressive pyramid, a great crafts market and a host of charming restaurants and hotels. It also retains indigenous traditions, with some elders still speaking Náhuatl and younger generations learning it in school, making it a rarity among the towns ringing the Mexican capital.
Everything in Tepoztlán is easily accessible on foot, except the cliff-top Pirámide de Tepozteco, a 2.5km strenuous hike away. Street names change in the center of town; for example Avenida 5 de Mayo becomes Avenida Tepozteco north of the zócalo.
Tepoztlán destination guides
Mexico City: Day of the Dead
Join in the celebrations of one of the world's most bizarre cultural institutions – Mexico's Day of the Dead – on this special festival-themed trip running over the Halloween period. Visit the museums of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera and learn all about their fascination with death. Dress up and party to the early hours with Mexico City's customarily costumed locals.