A host of great destinations sits south of the Mexican capital, including mystical Tepoztlán, breathtaking silver-mining tourist mecca Taxco and the superb complex of caves at Grutas de Cacahuamilpa. Cuernavaca, ‘the city of eternal spring,’ is a longtime popular escape from Mexico City and a home-away-from-home for many North Americans and chilangos (Mexico City inhabitants) who own second houses here.
The state of Morelos, which encompasses Cuernavaca and Tepoztlán, is one of Mexico’s smallest and most densely populated. Unfortunately, it suffered major damage in the earthquake of 19 September 2017 and many sights were forced to close (at least temporarily) for restoration work. Valleys at different elevations have a variety of microclimates, and many fruits, grains and vegetables have been cultivated here since pre-Hispanic times. You can visit palaces and haciendas in the region, along with 16th-century churches and monasteries. Those interested in the peasant revolutionary leader Emiliano Zapata should head to Cuautla, the first city that the Morelos hero conquered, and 6km further south to Anenecuilco, where he was born.