When is the best time to visit Mexico City?
The best time to visit Mexico City is March and April and October and November, for dry but mild weather. These months at the beginning and end of the city’s dry season have warmer night temperatures than the winter months, and the weather during the day is great for being outside, assuming the smog isn’t bad. If you are susceptible to air pollution, you might prefer to come during the wet season, which lasts from May through September. During the wet season, it rains almost daily, usually in short bursts in the evening. This is a huge and vibrant city, with pleasant daytime temperatures year-round, so any time of year is good for visiting museums, restaurants, festivals, historic sites, parks and all the city has to offer.
Best time to see flowers: Many look forward to the time Jacaranda trees bloom in late February and early March. The broad trees with lavender blooms light up Reforma Avenue. The Chapultepec Botanical gardens are open year-round and you can catch the Festival de Flores y Jardines there in in April, or head to the neighborhood of San Angel for Feria de las Flores in July.
Best time to visit Teotihuacan: The spectacular ancient Mesoamerican city, just 50 km north of Mexico City, is open year-round. If the weather is hot, as it can often be in May and June, you may want to l arrive when the site opens at 9 a.m. You can also get a jump on the crowds that way. Speaking of crowds, the spring equinox at Teotihuacan is a huge happening with hundreds of thousands of white-clad people flocking to the site to take in its energy as it alights with the sun. If your purpose is to see the site, and learn about its history, it is best to avoid the days around the equinox.
Best time for music fans: March is time for the Vive Latino Music Festival a huge event featuring an eclectic array of international and local pop and rock music stars. If your taste leans more towards violins and oboes than electric guitars and synthesizers, you might want to look at the schedule of the Festival de Mexico en el Centro Historico. The two-week-long festival, which begins at the end of March, includes jazz, classical music, and dance performances, as well as and children’s events. In November, you can catch another pop extravaganza: the Corona Capital Music Festival.
Best time to catch a soccer game: If you enjoy spectator sports, sitting in the raucous stands of a Mexico City soccer game will be an experience to remember. Mexico City has three teams in the Liga MX, the top level professional league in Mexico. They have two seasons, one going from July 20 to Nov. 24 and the other going from Jan. 5 into late May.
Best time to ride a canal boat in Xochimilco: The best time to set out with a group on one of these colorful canal boats depends on your travel appetite. Do you want to hit the canals with the locals? Then go on a weekend or during the week before and after Easter, when many Mexicans are on holiday. Want to avoid crowds? Weekday mornings are the best bet.
Best time for visiting markets: Mexico City has wonderful public markets and weekly open-air farmers’ markets. They operate year-round, but availability for some items, such as many fruits and some traditional crafts, depends on time of year. The best time for a fresh Mango is in June and July. Mamey Sapote, a brown fruit with rich orange flesh and a taste something like sweet pumpkin with cherry overtones, is most often found in the winter months. The best time to buy a hand-made piñata is in December, in the two weeks before Christmas.
Best time for bargains: Chilly winter nights keep some visitors out of the city, so you might be able to find some hotel bargains from December to February. There may also be some good hotel deals from June to August.
Mexico City Travel Seasons
September to November: Compared to many destinations, Mexico City doesn’t see a big variation in the number of visitors at different times of year, but this is when tourist traffic in Mexico City is the highest. The last weeks of the rainy season and the beginning of the dry season mean mild temperatures and a good backdrop for popular festivals such as Day of the Dead.
September has frequent rains and warm temperatures. The dry season sets in during October and nights get increasingly cool.
December to February: The coolest, driest, months of the year have some of the lowest tourist crowds and pleasures of their own, such as Mexico City’s exuberant celebrations of Christmas, New Years and Epiphany. While daytime temperatures are pleasant, night time temperatures can reach near freezing, and it is important to take into account that central heating is unusual in Mexican buildings.
March to May: Another popular time of year, when nights warm up, but before the rainy season starts, the spring months are a great time to explore outdoors. Be sure and reserve in advance, particularly if you are visiting during the weeks before and after Easter, times when Mexicans go on vacation. Besides the pageantry of holy week, there are quite a few festivals to enjoy this time of year.
June to August: The summer months are a little less popular for tourists than spring or fall because it rains almost every day during these months, usually in short, intense bursts. Luckily Mexico City has no shortage of museums, indoor markets and other diversions that are out of the weather. Because of the rain, air quality is at its best this time of year. The hottest month of this period is June.
Mexico City weather by month
Year-round, Mexico City has weather that most people would call lovely with daily highs between 20 and 30 degrees Celsius. However, there are good reasons why many find it more pleasant to visit in the wet season, from June through September, than in the dry season, from October through May. During the rainy season, it rains every day, usually a heavy tropical burst in the evening. It gets warm during the day, and cools off to an average of about 12 degrees at night. In the dry season, the nighttime lows are colder, averaging 5 degrees in January. And you may feel these lows more than you might at home, because in Mexico, central heating is uncommon. Also, the dry season is smog season. Smog is worst on warm, dry days.
•January Weather in Mexico City: January is the coolest month of the year. Daytime temperatures are usually pleasantly warm, while night time temperatures can dip to freezing. Smog is a regular occurrence, but rain is rare. Wear lots of layers to adjust for the changes in temperature. (Average Max Temperature: 22 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 10mm.)
•February Weather in Mexico City: February has temperatures are cool by Mexico City standards: pleasant during the day, and very cold at night. It’s still the dry season, so rain is rare, but smog might be an issue. Both indoor or outdoor activities are fine in February. Bring layers in either case. Jacaranda trees bloom at the end of the month, signaling that spring is on the way. (Average Max Temperature: 24 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 5 mm.)
•March Weather in Mexico City: In March, daytime temperatures start getting warmer, though still pleasant. Night time temperatures rise with them, though it’s still chilly. Rain is rare. This is usually a smoggy month unless an early Easter cuts down the traffic. (The week before and the week after Easter are holidays in Mexico, and many city residents leave town.) If you are sensitive to air pollution exposure, try to remain indoors during morning and afternoon commute times. (Average Max Temperature: 26 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 6 mm.)
•April Weather in Mexico City: April weather is often beautiful. It can get quite hot during the day, but it still gets quite cool at night. The two-week school vacation around Easter usually eases up the traffic for a little while, and thus there’s a break from the smog. It rains a little more often than earlier in the year, but it is still very much in the dry season. (Average Max Temperature: 27 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 14 mm.)
•May Weather in Mexico City: With May, Mexico City hits its hottest time of year. It’s even relatively mild at night. The sunny skies at the beginning of the month come with bad air quality, but when the rains get going at the end of the month, the smog will ease up. (Average Max Temperature: 27 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 24 mm.)
•June Weather in Mexico City: June has hot daytime temperatures, mild nighttime temperatures (lows are about 12 degrees C) and frequent rains. Often there will be a light shower in the morning and a heavier one, lasting 20 minutes to an hour, sometime after 4 p.m. It’s humid, but the smoggy days of the dry season are gone. (Average Max Temperature: 26 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 61 mm.)
•July Weather in Mexico City: July sees daytime temperatures decrease a little from the highs of May and June, while nighttime temperatures stay mild. It rains a lot, sometimes with a light shower in the morning, and a proper tropical downpour sometime after 4 p.m. The air quality is relatively good this time of year. (Average Max Temperature: 24 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 61 mm.)
•August Weather in Mexico City: August weather is much like July. Warm during the day, mildly cool at night, and wet, with a period of rain almost every day, often after 4 p.m. If a hurricane is in the area, expect some days of steady rain. Things can be soggy, but the air quality is good. (Average Max Temperature: 25 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 55 mm.)
•September Weather in Mexico City: In September temperatures may start to cool off, and regular rains continue. Most commonly the rains are brief tropical downpours in the afternoon and shorter morning showers, but sometimes, particularly when hurricanes are about, the rain
can go on for longer. Air quality is fine, and when there isn’t rain, it is usually pleasant outside.
(Average Max Temperature: 24 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 38 mm.)
•October Weather in Mexico City: October sees the weather shift from a wet season pattern of regular downpours to a dry season pattern of very little rain at all. Temperatures are still warm in the daytime, but nights get chillier. (A low of 10 degrees C is average.) When the rains disappear, smog becomes part of life again. (Average Max Temperature: 24 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 18 mm.)
•November Weather in Mexico City: A lovely month, November has comfortable temperatures during the day, but starts to get quite chilly at night, which can be noticeable indoors because central heating isn’t a common feature in Mexican buildings. Rain is rare, and air quality can be poor. (Average Max Temperature: 23 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 1 mm.)
•December Weather in Mexico City: Dry, sunny days and chilly nights are the norm for December in Mexico City. Rain is rare, while smog is a possibility. Once in a while the nighttime temperature might go below freezing at night. (Average Max Temperature: 23 degrees C. Average Rainfall: 2 mm.)
New Year’s Day – A public holiday when most businesses and restaurants will be closed, so people can relax with their families and recover from the New Year’s Eve parties the night before.
Día de los Reyes/Three Kings’ Day – On January 6, Mexicans commemorate the arrival of the three wise men after the birth of Christ by giving kids gifts.
Día De La Candelaria – On February 2, it is customary for families to dress up a doll of the baby Jesus in fine clothes and take him to church to be blessed.
Zona Maco Arte Contemporaneo – For four days in February, a gigantic international art fair takes over galleries and museums around the city, along with lectures and other activities.
National Pyrotechnic Festival – This spectacular week-long festival takes place in Tultepec, a Mexico city suburb that is the center of Mexico’s artisinal fireworks industry.
Benito Juárez’s Birthday – The birthday of Benito Juarez, a 19th century Mexican president who worked his whole life for democratic reform in the country, is an excuse for a national holiday on the third Monday in March.
Spring Equinox Teotihuacan – Hundreds of thousands of people, all wearing white with a red accessory, flock to the pyramids at Teotihuacan to absorb what they believe is energy released by the equinox, which can occur on March 19, 20 or 21.
Vive Latino Music Festival – A huge weekend-long music festival includes globally known bands as well as up-and-comers in an eclectic spectrum of genres.
Festival de México en el Centro Histórico – A two week showcase of high culture: classical and jazz music and dance, along with literary and children’s events.
Semana Santa – Beginning with Palm Sunday, the Sunday before Easter, when churches bless palm fronts, and continuing to Easter and the week after, Mexicans mark the most important festival of the Catholic calendar.
Passion Play of Iztapalapa – Taking place over 6 days, with a cast of over 2000 locals, 150 with speaking roles, plus thousands of followers carrying wooden crosses through the streets, this spectacular interpretation of the events leading up to Jesus’ crucifixion draws millions of spectators to Iztapalapa, a hardscrabble suburb of Mexico City.
Festival De Flores y Jardines – The Botanical Garden at Chapultepec and the nearby neighborhood of Polanco will pop with color at this festival featuring competitions in floral design.
Labor Day – Mexico honors the contributions of working people with a statutory holiday on May 1.
Cinco de Mayo – The anniversary of the First Battle of Puebla, in which Mexican forces beat the invading French, is not observed in Mexico, except in Puebla, a beautiful city about two and a half hours from Mexico City.
Corredor Cultural Roma Condesa – For a spring weekend, restaurants, bars and stores in the hip Roma and Condesa neighborhoods host a tour highlighting design, art, and food.
Ambulante Film Festival This festival stops by Mexico City in May for two weeks of documentaries and workshops.
Mexico City Gay Pride/Marcha del Orgullo LBTTI en la CDMX – Mexico City’s annual Gay Pride March has been going since 1979, and it is immense and joyful with hundreds of thousands participating.
Feria de Las Flores – The neighborhood of San Angel lights up its public spaces with this harvest festival, featuring displays, flower sales, tours, dances and concerts.
Festival of Indigenous Cultures – The Zocalo, or Plaza de la Constitucion, once the central square of the city of Tenochitlan, becomes the epicenter of an arts festival celebrating indigenous cultures.
El Grito de Dolores/Día de la Independencia – Mexico City’s primary patriotic celebration starts the evening of Sept. 15 when hundreds of thousands of people converge on the Zocalo to hear the bells ring and the President of Mexico read out the famous words of Miguel de Hidalgo, a priest whose cry of independence set off a revolution.
Día de la Raza – This unofficial holiday on the anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ landing was first conceived as a time to celebrate Mexico’s culture. For many it is also a time to remember the suffering of indigenous peoples.
Alebrije Parade – In a celebration of folk art, people propel hundreds of Alebrijes, gigantic brilliantly colored fantastical creatures, down a 5.5 km route, while acrobats, musicians and folks in costume add to the festive atmosphere.
Feria Nacional del Mole – San Pedro Atocpan, a town on the outskirts of Mexico City, is the world capital of mole, and spends much of October showcasing the spicy and savory wonders of the dish.
Dia de Muertos Parade – The annual Day of the Dead Parade through the Centro Historico was inspired by a fictional one, depicted in the opening of the 2015 James Bond movie “Spectre.”
Día de Muertos – Many public places full of families with shrines elaborately decorated in yellow marigolds. The Zocalo is one place to go. (It has a concert stage.) More down-to-earth observances take place in the neighborhoods of Coyoacan and Mixquic.
Corona Capital Music Festival – For one weekend, an auto race track becomes a venue for a variety of pop music performers, many from English-speaking countries, with four stages open during the day, and after-parties going into the night.
Mutek.mx – The Mexico stop of an international festival of electronic music and digital arts.
Día de la Revolución – Public holiday commemorating the 1910 revolution that overthrew President Porfirio Diaz.
Fiesta de Santa Cecilia – Mariachi bands can be found in Plaza Garibaldi day and night, year-round, but on this day, the square hosts lots of musicians and dancers, who come together for a fiesta honoring the patron saint of music.
Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe – Thousands of pilgrims carrying flowers converge on the Basilica of Guadelupe. Outside the basilica there is music, street food (pastries called bunuelos are traditional), and dancing.
Christmas – In the weeks leading up to the holiday, Nativity scenes, many life-sized, decorate public spaces and there are holiday lights in the Zocalo, which also hosts a giant ice rink.
New Year’s Eve – The big public party is around the Angel de Independencia. Expect live bands and fireworks.