If you consider yourself an explorer and long to discover the Mexico that lies beyond the beautiful beaches of the Pacific and the Caribbean, you will want to ask where is Monterrey?
Monterrey is located in the state of Nuevo Leon. The capital is the third largest city in the country. It differs vastly from its surrounding cities, standing out because of its mix of Mexican customs and Westernized culture. Unlike most of Mexico, Monterrey is a modern city with a thriving downtown. It combines industrial and commercial ventures with stunning contemporary architecture and plenty of tourist entertainment, making this a diverse cultural hub to visit.
If you are interested in art and design, then you can’t miss Monterrey’s Macroplaza, home to one of the country’s best contemporary art museums, MARCO (in Spanish ‘Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Monterrey’). The Macroplaza is also where you will find some of the other top museums in the city, such as the Museo de Historia Mexicana, the Museo del Noreste and the Museo del Palacio. Each of these museums addresses a different historical aspect of Nuevo Leon and Mexico as a whole. The Metropolitan cathedral is also located nearby, and you will fall in love with its fusion of classic and baroque, ornamental styles.
As well as the Macroplaza, there are numerous opportunities to explore the outdoor areas of the city. You’ll find these spots enjoyed by the locals just as much as the tourists. The Parque Ecologico Chipinque offers great walking and cycling opportunities; as does the Santa Lucia river walk, which joins the Macroplaza to the enjoyable Fundidora Park.
Here, you can see the urban influences on the city, as the park combines greenery with the towering steel structures that make up the large, neighboring Museum of Steel. At Fundidora Park, you can pass the time by catching the river barge or by enjoying one of Monterrey’s unique activities: ice skating. It is also good to know that proceeds from the costs of these activities go towards supporting local educational projects.
Another authentic area that will no doubt become one of your Monterrey vacation highlights is Barrio Antiguo, situated beside the Macroplaza. This neighborhood is known for its busy nightlife and wide range of places to eat and drink. The old quarter is made up of ancient, colorful buildings that reflect Monterrey’s historical roots on the outside, whilst appealing to a lively, youthful and modern crowd on the inside. Alongside the variety of trendy bars, nightclubs and restaurants, you can also find small street stalls, art galleries, cafes and live music venues.
If you’re still looking for reasons to make this city your next vacation destination, try some of the outdoor Monterrey activities and get your adrenaline fix with a bungee jump or zip line over the nearby Sierra Madre Oriental Mountains? Another amazing activity is mountain canyoneering, where you can explore the El Salto canyon and spectacular waterfall rappelling.
You should also treat yourself to one of the memorable hot air balloon excursions on offer, where you can watch the sunrise over the beautiful mountains and surrounding valleys.
There is so much to experience in Monterrey that you will not fail to become enamored with this unique city full of opportunities to experience local culture and beautiful natural environments.