By Cristina Alonso
November 18, 2014
Papalote Museo Del Niño

When planning a family vacation to Mexico, many parents often opt for a trip to the beach—and with good reason; the seashores here are gorgeous, and tons of fun for all age groups. It would be a mistake, though, to skip bringing the kids to country’s sprawling, exciting capitol. Mexico City is bustling with energy, and filled with fascinating attractions that appeal to children as well as adults.

For starters, you’ll find parks through out DF—like Parque Lincoln in Polanco, with a playground and a pond where you and the kids can rent little model boats. There are also family-friendly restaurants everywhere (try Arroyo in Tlalpan, with its fun play area), as well as theme parks, kid-oriented museums, and one of the most popular zoos in the world. Now, all that’s left to do is teach your kids to say “hola!” so they can greet their new Mexico City friends like locals.

Kidzania Santa Fe

You’ve brought the kids to Mexico City; now let them explore a whole metropolis of their own. In this indoor mega-playground, little ones get to try out play versions of grownup experiences—like making sushi rolls, racing cars, and even opening a bank account (much more enjoyable than the real thing).

Papalote Museo del Niño

This bright blue-and-yellow tiled building houses dozens of exhibits and activities for all ages, from a mini supermarket—where kids can learn all about responsible eating and shopping—to a Lego workshop, where they can build an eco-friendly city. Not to be missed: a walk inside Ramón, a giant rainforest tree, and movies at the IMAX mega-screen theater.

Granja las Américas

Just because they’re in the big city doesn’t mean your kids can’t enjoy some country-style fun. At this sprawling “farm,” they can learn about harvesting crops, feeding livestock, and making goat’s milk dulce de leche at the cajeta workshop. If that’s not action-packed enough,, they can hop on a zip line that crosses the whole park.

Zoológico de Chapultepec

Set in the city’s huge Chapultepec forest, this is one of the most visited zoos in the world (it welcomes some 5.5 million visitors every year). Check out native species such as Mexican wolves, howler monkeys, river otters and red-kneed tarantulas, plus exotic animals like giant pandas and Asian elephants.

Six Flags México

This fun-for-all theme park features more than 50 activities, shows, and roller coasters, including extreme rides like the Boomerang (which takes you on a 360-degree loop) and the Medusa Steel Coaster. Younger—or less adventurous—family members can hop on the flying chairs of Vuelo Alpino or pay a visit to Tweety’s House.