Tips for your visit to Frida Kahlo
by Ilse Alejo
Monday, September 4, 2017
If you are planning a trip to Mexico City you cannot miss a visit to one of the most emblematic and beautiful places of the city: The Frida Kahlo’s museum.
I am sure you have heard of Frida, but if you haven’t here is a quick summary of her life: she was a Mexican painter, her work is considered as surrealist, although she never considered herself as a surrealist painter, she was married to Diego Rivera, a famous Mexican muralist. Her paintings were influenced by her inability to become a mother, her several illnesses and Mexican culture, she has become a symbol of feminism and Mexican culture.
The museum is located in the south of the city, in an area known as Coyoacán, it has a hipster and artsy vibe that I’m sure that your soul will enjoy, the address is Londres 247, Del Carmen, Coyoacán, 04100 Ciudad de México, CDMX.
If you don’t want to go there using Uber, Mexico City has several tourist buses, these buses are divided by areas (north, south, east, west, etc) of the city and they take you to all the spots that you have to see in those areas, I think it is a really cool and safe way to get to know Mexico City, you need a different ticket for each area and there are designated places where you can buy them, I think a really good spot to get them is at Reforma 222, here is the website.
The Blue House
The museum, also called the Blue House, used to be Frida and Diego’s home, it holds a permanent exhibition of her paintings, letters, dresses, and memorabilia, it will take you about an hour and a half to see it all.
Frida was in love with Mexico and Mexicans are in love with Frida and you will see that in her house, it is pure Mexico all over the place, the gardens, the walls, the kitchen, everything is decorated with Mexican handicrafts. She was also a collector of Mexican art, so you will find works of other artists in there too.
I visited the museum two months ago and I wasted a lot of time because I didn’t know it was so popular, I went there with a friend that was from India and another Mexican friend, we were surprised to find out that the tickets for foreigners was a little bit more expensive.
So my tips for your visit are:
- Buy your ticket online: Recently there is a lot of hype around Frida Kahlo, so if you don’t buy your ticket online you will have to queue for around 2 or 3 hours before getting in, the tickets are really easy to find on their website.
- When you arrive there, be sure to ask which queue is to buy tickets and which one is for the electronic tickets, you don’t want to miss your entrance because you were standing in the wrong line.
- If you are a photographer and plan to take some seriously amazing photos at the museum, be prepared to pay another 30 pesos for the right to take photos, it is worth it.
- Go there early, with your entrance ticket you get a discount to visit Diego’s Rivera museum, the downside is that it is on the other side of the city.
- Stay for a little longer in the gardens, there is always something new that can find, you can also have a coffee at the café.
- Since the museum used to be a house, you have to follow the designated path and you cannot wander freely inside the house, so make sure you stay as long as you want in the different parts of the house because you cannot go back, there will be many tourists, so don’t let them pressure you.
When I went there, there was a temporal exhibiting featuring Frida’s casts; she had an accident when she was younger and she was forced to wear casts around her upper body, so she started to draw on them as way of entertaining herself, you may not find this exhibition but I am sure you will find others, since they recently discovered lots of Frida’s belongings in a room that was locked, following Diego’s and Frida’s wishes, that stuff is currently being classified.
My highlights were:
- The garden, pretty much because it was a big open space in which you could wander freely, you can take pictures in here for free and you can stay here as long as you want.
- The library, it is located on the second floor of the house, it holds lots of books that Diego and Frida read in their lives, you can get an idea of what influenced not only their art but also its beliefs.
- Frida’s room, this room has a very special atmosphere, it really reflects Frida’s personality, her strength, her pain and her struggle.
Other stuff to do in the area
If you have free time after visiting the museum, you can:
- Treat yourself with some “churros”. The “churros” from Coyoacán are famous for their amazing flavor. You can buy one from any of the street food stalls in the area.
- Visit the local handicrafts market: There is a market filled with handicrafts (which some are really nice) just a few blocks away from the museum from all México at a really cheap price. The market is just beside Coyoacán main square.
- Go to Coyoacán and take a photo in front of the square fountain and visit the church in front.
General precautions to have in the city
Mexico City is one of the biggest metropolia in the world and that comes with some downsides that I’m sure you have heard of, so keep your phone in your pocket or purse, keep your purse in front of you at all times and don’t be flashing around your money. If you follow these tips you will have an amazing time in the city.
I hope that make some amazing memories in your trip to México!