National Palace (Palacio Nacional), Mexico City

Government Building · Architectural Building
Absorb the impressive architecture of National Palace (Palacio Nacional), a government building erected on the site of the previous Aztec residence of Montezuma II, and built using materials salvaged from the ancient ruins. At the home of the federal treasury and national archives, you can admire beautiful architecture and courtyards (one of which is used to for state banquets) and enjoy amazing murals by Diego Rivera. Note that large bags must be kept in lockers on entry. Consider touring the building with a guide to enhance your understanding of its history. Plan to see National Palace (Palacio Nacional) and other attractions that appeal to you using our Mexico City route builder app.
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National Palace (Palacio Nacional) reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
3,310 reviews
  • With not that much of displays inside, but it's some of the corridors on the 2nd level & the "grand staircase" (which is not the one for the public usage) in this palace where covering pretty much...  more »
  • The Palace itself is pretty interesting. But the murals are very interesting. Lots of history. Local guide, hired right on the street by the Cathedral helped us to navigate around,- she was very...  more »
  • It´s ok, nothing special. Can be found in most latin American cities. Absolutely an ok area surrounding it, so worth to stop by  more »
  • A gorgeous space to explore. The highlight is Diego Rivera’s History of Mexico mural in the stairwell, but the gardens are truly lovely. There was a line when I arrived about 30 minutes after it opened, but it moved quickly. Valid ID (driver’s license is fine) required for entrance.
  • if you are visiting Mexico City, the national Palace is a must. there, people is very kind, and they have national museum inside of the palace, and also they have expo sometimes. it is a quiet place , you can really enjoy there! so, do not hesitate the national palace of Mexico is waiting for you!!
  • This used to be an old bull fighting ring I was told. The place inside is beautiful. The murals were a great dipection of mexicos history according to Diego Rivera.
  • As you might heard, Palacio Nacional has a vast and interesting murals paired by Diego Rivera, which I’ll describe in a moment, but the National Palace, has a fascinating important history... It turns out, that it used to be: Moctezuma's "New Houses" The site and much of the building material of the current building is of what were called Moctezuma II's "New Houses". This palace functioned as the Aztec tlatoani's residence and performed a number of official functions as well. The building was divided into two sections and decorated with marble and painted stucco. The main façade contained the shield of the monarchy, an eagle with a snake in its claws. It has three patios surrounded by porticos, indoor sanitary facilities, fountains and gardens. The bedrooms had tapestries of cotton, feathers and rabbit fur painted in bright colors. The floors were of polished stucco and covered in animal furs and finely-woven mats. There were rooms for servants, administrative staff, and military guards, along with kitchens, pantries and storage rooms. The richness of the palace surprised Cortés, which he relayed in letters to Charles I of Spain. Part of Diego Rivera's mural depicting Mexico's history in the main stairwell Left panel of Rivera's History of Mexico mural in the main stairwell A number of changes were made during the rule of Porfirio Díaz. The English-made clock on the parapet was moved to the tower of the Church of Santo Domingo. The façade was cemented over and etched to look like stone block. Cloth awnings were placed on the windows of the upper floors. On pedestals near the main door, statues of female forms were placed. Inside, the ambassador's room, the dining room, the kitchens, the lounge, the garages and the stables were all refurnished. This was done at a time when French style was popular in Mexico. Between 1926 and 1929, the third floor was added during the term of President Plutarco Elías Calles by Alberto J. Pani, an engineer and then finance minister and designed by Augusto Petriccioli.[1][3] Merlons were placed on the towers and parapet and decorative caps were placed on all three doors. The Dolores Bell was placed in a niche flanked by atlantes above the balcony above the central door. The façade was covered with red tezontle stone and installed stone frames on the doors, windows, cornices, and parapets. In the interior, a grand staircase of marble was installed in the central patio (where Diego Rivera would later paint The History of Mexico mural) and constructed stairs to the internal revenue department and the offices of the General Treasury in the north wing. The old Chamber of Deputies, abandoned after a fire in 1872, was reconstructed and re-inaugurated as a museum to the centennial. A statue of Benito Juárez was placed in the north wing near his old quarters. This statue was made with bronze from the cannons of the Conservative Army during the Reform War and from French projectiles from the Battle of Puebla. This caused the Palace to lose its Baroque (and French) appearance and give it the appearance it has today. Palace as presidential residence All the viceroys that ruled New Spain during the colonial period lived in this residence except for Antonio de Mendoza and Juan O’Donojú, the first and last viceroys. After independence, the palace was home to the two emperors who ruled Mexico during brief periods: Agustin de Iturbide and Maximilian I of Mexico. The first president to live in the building was also Mexico's first president, Guadalupe Victoria, and its last occupant in the 19th century was Manuel González, president from 1880 to 1884. After that, the presidential residence was Los Pinos, but the National Palace became the official residence once again with Andrés Manuel López Obrador, president since 2018. Famous people who stayed here include Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Mateo Alemán, Friar Servando de Mier (he also died here), Alexander von Humboldt and Simón Bolívar.
  • Very beautiful palace . You can see the palace inside as well as other monuments like cathedral, Temple of mayor in few minutes walk .

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