A huge green space at the heart of Mexico City, Chapultepec Park (or Bosque Chapultepec) is a popular area for chilangos and visitors alike to enjoy a wide range of activities and attractions.
It is a host of important museums here, an internationally renowned zoo, monuments, fountains and areas for cultural exhibits. There are, of course, plenty of gardens and green spaces with an interesting variety of flora and fauna to see.
The name Chapultepec comes from Nahuatl, the language spoken by the Aztecs, and means Hill of the Grasshopper (“chapul” – grasshopper, and “tepec” – hill).
The park is very large, stretching over 1,600 acres (4 square km), it is separated into 3 distinct sections.
You’ll find the zoo, Chapultepec Castle (which houses the National History Museum), the National Anthropology Museum, Modern Art Museum, Tamayo Museum, and an artificial lake with boats for rent among other attractions in the first section.
The second section has a large amusement park, La Feria de Chapultepec Mágico, as well as several museums including the Papalote children’s museum and Natural History Museum, a few lakeside restaurants, and Mexico’s national cemetery, El Panteon Civil de Dolores, and several impressive fountains and public art.
The third section is less frequented and is made up mostly of natural areas with wooded areas and wildlife.
The park’s first section is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 5 am to 8 pm during Daylight Saving Time, and 7 pm the rest of the year. On Mondays, the first section is closed for maintenance. Sections 2 and 3 are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The park is a popular spot to visit throughout the week, but weekends and holidays are the busiest, and you can expect the park to be crowded, particularly on Sundays. Admission to Chapultepec park is free.