Monterrey Travel Guide

Don’t let the sights, sounds and smells of heavy industry put you off visiting Mexico’s third largest city, which is easily as culturally and historically interesting as the country’s larger counterparts. With the Sierra Madre Mountains providing a backdrop to the city, it’s hard to throw any accusations of visual blandness at Monterrey. While this is often hailed as the country’s least Mexican city; for many, it is a gentle introduction to the diversity of Mexican culture.

With close proximity to the border with Texas, Monterrey has adopted some of its neighbor’s urban traits such as American-style malls, fast-food outlets and residential estates, and there are a number of English speaking citizens in the city. However, cherished historic treasures offset the US influences and help to redress the cultural balance.

A city with the interests of art lovers at heart, Monterrey is home to venues such as the Monterrey Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art, both venues offering works by Mexican artists including the likes of Diego Rivera and Rufino Tamayo.


Barrio Antiguo: the city’s old quarter is home to a variety of residential buildings from the colonial era and is the place to head at the weekend for some lively entertainment.

Zona Rosa: head here if you’re looking for a modern environment with classy restaurants, fine hotels and upmarket shopping establishments.

Sésamo square: a family-friendly entertainment center with amusement park rides, pools with water slides, musical shows and more.

Grutas de Garcia: this underground cave system dates back over 50 million years and features one mile of subterranean trails and 37 cavernous chambers.

Bioparque Estrella Nature Park: this 600 acre park sees bus loads of visitors introduced to more than 6,000 free-roaming animals.

Cervecería Cuauhtemoc: get tipsy at the place responsible for brewing beers such as Tecate, Carta Blanca and Bohemia. This is one of the country’s oldest breweries, having been around since 1890.