The Turibus Service of Mexico City
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The Turibus service MXCY
The Turibus in Mexico City is a panoramic bus service mainly intended for visitors; offering four routes covering the most popular and touristic sites, showcasing Mexico City’s history, museums, architecture, culture, stores, malls and cuisine.
This service offers seeing the most interesting places and learn how life in this city is like. You need a full day to take one or more of the bus routes because they practically cover the town.
Four Main tours with the same one-day ticket
Hop on and off the bus as much as you want and on the stop of your choosing; you can take a walk around, drink a cup of coffee and relax a bit before taking your next Turibus and continuing with the route. The stops are very well signaled and you’ll be able to take any of the four routes available with the same ticket.
Turibus service Historical Downtown Route
This route will take you through the main roads and highlights towards the “Historical downtown”; including the “Museum of Modern Art”, the “Tamayo Museum” and the “National Auditorium” and more on Paseo de la Reforma avenue.
Departing from the National Auditorium
This route takes around an hour and a half, departing from the “National Auditorium” on Paseo de la Reforma, near to the “Chapultepec Castle” and to the “Chapultepec Forest” with its well-known lake; is one of the most visited spots both by locals and tourists where art exhibitions, theater performances and seasonal classic ballet presentations, with national and international artists, are held regularly.
Map including the stops for Turibus Historic downtown route:
- Museum of Modern Art
- Cibeles (Madrid Square)
- Lamm House
- Angel of Independence (heading downtown)
- Reforma 222
- Wax Museum and Ripley
- Glorieta Colón
- Juárez Chamber
- Zócalo (Historical Downtown)
- Manuel Tolsá Square
- Franz Mayer Museum
- Monument to the Revolution
- San Carlos National Museum
- Angel of Independence (heading to Chapultepec)
- Reforma-Río de La Plata
- Anthropology Museum
This route starts on Paseo de la Reforma, where you can find historical monuments like the Angel of Independence, built at the beginning of the 20th century to commemorate 100 years of the country’s independence; surrounded by contrasting buildings of different architectural styles from the 19th and early 20th century, as well as modern ones.
Continuing towards Historical Downtown, we reach “El Zócalo” square, with a huge flag in the middle; surrounded by vice-royal buildings such as the Metropolitan Cathedral and The National Palace, seat of the federal executive power, up north.
Every year on the night of September 14, the President yells “independence” out of one of the windows, as Miguel Hidalgo did in 1810 at the beginning of the independence war in Dolores-Hidalgo, a town in the state of Guanajuato.
The original vice-royale buildings in the square, removed or modified over the following centuries, were strategically built by the Spanish practically on top of what were once the buildings of the political and religious center of Mexico, Tenochtitlán, the Mexicas capital.
The Templo Mayor
It is advisable to hop off the Turibus to see some of these vice-royal “New Spain” buildings, as well as buildings from the 19th and 20th centuries. Some of the recommended places behind the Cathedral are the Temple Mayor Museum, the Palace of Fine Arts towards the south, the National Art Museum MUNAL and the Franz Mayer Museum. If you feel like taking a break, there are plenty of restaurants and coffeehouses around this area, fit for all tastes and budgets, some of them with beautiful views of the Zócalo square.
Turibus South Route
La Condesa neighborhood
The Turibus service departs from the National Auditorium and heads down towards Reforma avenue towards what was once the (colonia) Condesa neighborhood, stopping at the Cibeles fountain roundabout, donated by the Spanish government; which is a replica of the original fountain in Madrid. You’ll be able to start the South route here, which is the longest one of the routes available; starting early and without hopping off at any of the stops, it takes around 4 hours. You can hop off and have a cup of coffee or a beer at one of the bars on the (colonia) Roma neighborhood.
Map including the stops for Turibus South Route:
- Cibeles Fountain
- Roma Market
- World Trade Center
- Plaza de Toros México
- La Paz Avenue
- Estadio Universitario UNAM
- Perisur Mall
- Cuicuilco Mall
- Flores Market
- Tlalpan Historical Center
- Cuicuilco Mall
- Universum Museum
- MUAC, UNAM
- UNAM Head Quarters
- Watercolor Museum
- Coyoacán Historical Center
- Frida Kahlo Museum
- Plaza Coyoacán Mall
Continuing to the south of the city, on Insurgentes avenue, one of the city’s main roads; crossing from north to south, going around the World Trade Center, the Blue Stadium – which belongs to the “Cruz Azul” soccer team, and the Plaza de Toros México to finally reach the University City, home to the most important university in Mexico, the Autonomous National University of Mexico UNAM.
This tour also goes through the Coyoacán neighborhood, with colonial architecture and cobblestone streets, remnants of what once was a tiny town on the outskirts of the city, where there are also many places to grab a bite, have some coffee, shop or watch street shows such as mimes or musicians in “Coyoacán Square”; visited by tourists and people from all places, where you’ll find a modern place with a colonial past atmosphere.
Turibus Polanco Route
The Polanco route goes around the main avenues in Polanco, that make this area a place where you can find everything, from restaurants and bars to stores from prestigious brands. This route takes about an hour and a half, and you can reach this route on the National Auditorium. We recommend that you confirm the route you’re taking once you hop on, because two different routes depart from this stop: one towards the Historical Downtown and another one towards Polanco.
This circuit goes through the Polanco Colony, down Masaryk avenue which was recently renewed to a modern and more classy look in an area surrounded with good international cuisine restaurants, trendy bars and prestigious stores which you can visit if you decide to hop off and take a nice walk or go shopping around this avenue.
Map including the stops for Turibus Polanco Route:
- Arquímedes – Champs Elysées
- Masaryk / Moliere
- Antara Mall
- Soumaya Museum
- Américas Hippodrome / Americas Farm
- Papalote Museum
The Turibus then heads to the Chapultepec Forest towards the “Chapultepec Fair” and the furthest sections of the Chapultepec Forest. The Turibus stops in front of the Natural History Museum and then heads back to the National Auditorium.
The Basilica of Guadalupe in Mexico City
The Basilica route goes through the center and north of the city, and one of the most visited places is the Guadalupe Basilica. One of the Turibus stops to get on this route, which lasts about an hour and a half, is next to the Metropolitan Cathedral, in Mexico City’s Historical Downtown.
The Garibaldi Square
The route towards the Guadalupe Basilica departs from the stop next to the Cathedral and goes by the famous Garibaldi Square, a meaningful place on Mexican music and night festive folklore with mariachi, trios and famous bars featured in several Mexican films.
Stops for Turibus Basilica Route:
- Palace of the Miravalle Counts
The Tlatelolco Square of the Three Cultures
The bus goes around the Square of the Three Cultures or Santiago Tlatelolco Square; a square honoring the birth of a new nation showing a plate which text, expressing on the mix of the nation’s indigenous and Spanish past, reads “It was neither a victory nor a defeat, it was the painful birth of what now is Mexico’s mestizo people”; the square is surrounded by what once was a huge compound of apartment buildings built on the ‘60s.
This square was witness to the “student movement of 1968”and the earthquake in Mexico City in 1985. Several buildings of the housing unit collapsed during the earthquake and over 10,000 people died in Mexico City.
The Guadalupe Basilica
The route ends in the famous “Guadalupe Basilica” where Popes John Paul II, Benedicto XVI and Francis I celebrated solemn masses. It is one of the most visited and venerated religious places, both by Mexicans and foreigners devoted to the Virgin of Guadalupe.
Recommendations during the tours
You can hop on the Turibus of your preferred route on any of the stops specified for each circuit. You can pay for your ticket once on the bus; the price includes an all-day for all the routes, allowing to hop on and off the buses at any stops with no extra cost, as well as transfers among the 4 routes.
If the weather allows it, it is very nice and interesting to see the city on the top floor since it allows to see details that can’t be seen on foot or driving around.
We recommend that you bring protection from the sun (hat, sunscreen) as well as beverages to keep hydrated. Passengers must watch out for tree branches which could present a hazard at some points.
The service includes informative audio about the landmarks visited available in Spanish, English, Japanese, German, Italian and French; including details about each area and point of interest, listened through the headphones provided by Turibus. There’s free WiFi in all buses.
Tours are available everyday, from 09:00 to 21:00.
– Adult: $8.00 USD
– Child: $4.00 USD
Weekends and holidays
– Adult: $9.00 USD
– Child: $5.00 USD
*Source, official Turibus Mexico City site, July 2016.