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Mexico Guide

Originally written as a bit of help to other travelers heading along the same or similar route to us in 2004. I put this up on the Lonely Planet Thorn Tree. Please note that this is accurate as of the time of travel, and obviously things may have changed, so as with any guide, use this as a starting point only. While we spent a couple of months in Mexico we only started to scratch the surface of this amazing country and do not in any way consider ourselves to be experts.

Mexico map thanks to ballofdirt.com

Like many of you we have found the current Mexico LP considerably out of date (written 2004). Some of the hotels we would have checked out are now no longer in existance, some that are mentioned as worthy are flea pits and some that barely got a mention we found to be perfectly acceptable.

The things we look for in a room are:

a) Reasonable price. Usually between $100 & $300 per night for a double. All prices are in pesos for a double unless otherwise stated.

b) Reasonable level of cleanliness and care.

c) Good security. We travel with a few expensive toys that would be hard to replace and need a room that locks securely.

d) Quiet. When we want a bit of noise we head into town, not at 3 am with an early bus to catch.

e) We prefer a family-run place as we find they tend to take more care and they are friendlier.


Nuevo Hotel Reforma is OK for a night or two, but I am sure you could do better. They have big rooms with attached bath and TV, but have certainly seen better days. Was around $180, but that was just before Semana Santa so may be less now.


Hotel Buenos Aires is undergoing renovations and will probably look pretty good in a few months. The rooms have attached bath, TV and good security. We had an extremely noisy (mexican) neighbour who had a new hooker each night and proceeded to sing with the TV on full at 3 am after doing some massive hoiks. Not probably a reflection on the hotel.

Zacatecas, Mexico


The first night we stayed at Hotel Zamora. It is a dive and worth avoiding even though at $163 it was probably the cheapest room in the old part of town. The door had multiple holes drilled though so people could watch you. The attached bathroom and bed were filthy and the glass was missing from the window. This place has to be listed under emergency use only.

The next place we found was a gem. The new Hostal La Plata run by the same people who run The Villa Colonial is up behind the Abstract Art Museum - an easy 5 minute walk to the Cathedral. Large, clean, new rooms with shared (but very clean) bathrooms are $180. The front rooms have balconies. There is a rooftop terrace with a great kitchen, laundry ($25 a load including detergent and fabric softener!), and views over the city. Highly recommended!