The Best Places for Music in Mexico City
You might have already heard Mexico City has an awesome food and museum scene, but did you know it also has a killer music scene? This major metropolis knows how to have a good time—whether you want to listen to jazz over cocktails or dance to salsa and cumbia, there’s always a music spot that’s right for your mood.
Mexico City has a great jazz scene in pretty much whichever neighborhood you decide to stay in. Head on over to Casa Franca in Roma Norte for dimly-lit rooms filled with comfy chairs and intimate nooks. Grab a delicious cocktail or indulge in pizza as you listen to nightly jazz, which usually starts around 10pm. Another great option is Parker & Lenox in Juárez, where you’ll find delicious food and cocktails with great service and a speakeasy vibe. Last but not least, check out Zinco Jazz Club in el Centro—situated in an old bank vault in an art deco building from the 1930s—for a more quaint, old-school jazz club ambiance.
Salsa & Cumbia
Ready to dance? Salsa clubs in Mexico City are legendary. If you’re in Condesa or La Roma, head over to Mama Rumba where you’ll find a healthy mix of locals and foreigners dancing to live Colombian salsa. For a more authentic Mexican salsa-club experience, check out Club San Luis —also in La Roma—or Barba Azul in Doctores. The latter of the two is in a rougher neighborhood, so make sure you take an Uber or other ride-sharing service there and back (on another note, you might recognize this club from Narcos: Mexico). If you’re in El Centro, check out Salón Paraiso for a bigger, more cumbia-heavy club (have a listen to what you might be dancing to here).
If you’d rather get your groove on or simply listen to more electronic, ambient, housey, pop, or a mixture of different tunes, you have a variety of options. For a dark, underground bar with a more hippie-feel, replete with burning sage, ambient music, cool interior design and carefully crafted cocktails, head to Xaman Bar in Juárez. For another underground bar, one pumping house and techno music and serving cave vibes, check out Yu Yu , also in Juárez. For a mixture of music—from 90’s pop to Mexican banda—four floors, a great dance floor, and a rooftop terrace, head no further than Pulqueria los Insurgentes in Roma Norte. Last but not least, check out La Cañita in Doctores for a small, laid-back queer bar with great seafood tostadas, mezcal, and a fun dance floor.
If you’re ready to hear some mariachi music, head to Plaza Garibaldi in the city center. Sit in the plaza or select one of the many bars and restaurants with outdoor seating and listen to various mariachi groups perform while donning traditional attire. If you don’t have time to make it to Plaza Garibaldi but intend to spend a day in Xochimilco, make sure you buy a song or two from a mariachi group on one of the boats—it’s definitely worth it.
Shows & Concerts
If you’d like to see some live shows and concerts while in the city, you’ll find the best performances at El Plaza Condesa and Auditorio BlackBerry in Condesa and Foro Indierocks! , housed in an old church in Roma Norte. There’s also the Pepsi Center WTC in the Nápoles neighborhood (close to Del Valle/Narvarte). All are relatively medium-sized venues with great acoustics and home to arguably the best live music fans in the world.