Puebla is one of the best day trips from Mexico City for city lovers
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How To Get From Mexico City To Puebla: 5 Easy Ways+ Prices

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Are you looking into getting from Mexico City to Puebla?

Puebla was built from the ground up during the earliest days of the Spanish colonisation. Thanks to its long-standing existence as a key piece in the colonisation puzzle, it boasts some wonderfully preserved architecture, from Renaissance-inspired buildings to the full-blown excess of the Baroque. Just exploring the streets of the historic quarter is like seeing centuries of time pass before your eyes.

If all our talk of beautiful buildings hasn’t inspired you, the city is also a haven for delicious dishes. Some of these recipes are so beloved they now have their own annual festivals!

Since moving to CDMX, we’ve been to Puebla on day trips a couple of times, once as part of a Mexico City to Puebla tour that set us back 1,085 MXN (65 USD) per person and once making our own way using the bus for a mere 544 MXN (33 USD) return. 

Both these options are super convenient ways to travel from Mexico City to Puebla, but there are other options as well. In this post, we’ll take you through exactly what your choices are.

Quick Guide

Google Maps Mexico City to Puebla Map

Summary Of Your Options:

Option TypeMain AdvanatgeCostHow To Book
By BusCheapest, best for solo travellersFrom $12 one wayUse Bookaway.com
By CarFlexibility, affordable, best for couplesFrom $50 per dayUse Discover Cars
On A Day TripDoor-to-door service & guideFrom $50 per personCheck Viator
Private TransferMost convenient from CDMX airportFrom $160Check Bookaway.com
By Plane🚫 No direct flight options!± $150Browse Sky Scanner

Our Experience Of Getting From Mexico City To Puebla

travel from Mexico City to Puebla

We went to Puebla on a day trip using the ADO Bus service, which is one of the largest bus businesses in the country. There were quite a few things we wanted to pack into our visit, so we decided on an early start, choosing the 7 am bus, which departed from the ADO Taxquena bus area in the Central del Sur station. 

This bus station is relatively far south of the city centre, so we caught an Uber there. Arriving at 6.30 am, we had plenty of time to buy our bus ticket and chill for a bit. It’s perfectly possible (and easy) to get tickets in advance – we’ll discuss that in more detail further down – but on this occasion we just did it on the fly and purchased our tickets at the bus station.

The bus is advertised as taking 2 hours, but it took about 2.5, eventually landing us in Puebla around 9.30am. Apart from the slight delay,  everything went smoothly, leaving us with a good amount of time to check out the city. 

We then took the bus back from Puebla to Mexico City at 5pm, finishing our day trip at the TAPO bus station. Then it was another Uber back home to Condesa to decompress.

Driving To Puebla From Mexico City

Blogger Robin on the way to Puebla.

Driving from Mexico City to Puebla is a good option if you value your own space. It’s also more convenient than schlepping to and from the bus stations, which aren’t situated in the parts of town where you want to hang out.

Although you’ll be travelling pretty much the same route as the bus, it’s obviously a bit faster driving in a car, so your journey time will be less overall.

The downside is that a car will definitely be more expensive. Even with a group of 3 or 4 people in a vehicle, it will still clock in at more pesos per person. That’s before even factoring in things like parking, which can be challenging if it’s your first time visiting Puebla.

Tip: Don’t forget to have cash on you for the toll booths. We’ve driven around a fair bit now in Mexico and it’s not the norm for them to accept debit or credit cards.

Is It Safe To Drive From Mexico City To Puebla?

For an experienced driver who is used to a certain degree of aggressive driving, it’s absolutely safe to be behind the wheel. The main thing is to be especially aware as you come in and out of CDMX, where the traffic flow can be heavy and people tend to get a bit more pushy in their desire to escape the crush.

We’re also hyper attentive of the huge lorries that zip in and out of the city. These guys are a bit of a menace with the way they change lanes without indicating, but it’s fine as long as you calibrate your expectations!

How Far Is Puebla From Mexico City?

The distance from Mexico City to Puebla is about 135km if you take the fastest route along the 150D highway. That can translate into anywhere between 2 hours’ and 3 hours’ drive time.

Yes, we know, that’s a big difference. Traffic is a huge factor, so try and avoid the commuting hours in the morning and evening if you’re travelling during the weekday. 

Renting A Car In Mexico City

Blogger Robin driving in Mexico City.

We almost always rent our vehicles through Discover Cars, not just in Mexico but around the world. Partly, that’s because they have a clear website interface that offers a comparison of tons of different rental options. 

The main reason, however, is we like their comprehensive insurance package, which covers pretty much everything. It just makes driving so much more relaxing knowing that you’re covered for the majority of eventualities!

Don’t forget to consider where you can pick the car up from before deciding on a deal. When we rent a car in Mexico City, we usually opt to pick up our vehicle from the Alamo branch on Paseo de la Reforma, not far from the Angel de la Independencia monument. 

If you check out the reviews online for this play, they have quite bad feedback. All we can say is our personal experience has been totally fine, and the location was convenient for us. 

The price was $60 for the day, and that included insurance. As we’ve already said, that’s quite a bit more than the bus, but it’s still a decently priced option.

Tip: If you follow our example and go for the full cover from Discover Cars, don’t bother getting upgrades to the insurance from the shop. They will probably try to upsell you on something that doesn’t have any real impact on your coverage, so just politely decline.

Getting By Bus From Mexico City To Puebla City

North Bus Terminal in Mexico City.

Our preferred journey is to go from Mexico City to Puebla by bus. Why? Aside from the money savings, Puebla is not particularly far from CDMX. Over relatively short distances, we find it’s more relaxing to let somebody else take the wheel!

All the major bus stations have a metro stop nearby. For the bus we took with ADO, for example, the station is right outside the Tasquena stop on Line 2. 

Usually, we end up hailing an Uber because it’s quite a bit faster. Also, Uber in Mexico is just so wonderfully affordable.

Tip: There are a lot of different bus stations in CDMX, so make sure you double-check which one your bus departs from. Knock on wood; we’ve never gone to the wrong one (yet!), but it’s an easy mistake to make.

Mexico City To Puebla Bus Schedule

Bus CompanyTimetablePrices
ADO From 05:00-22:00 regularlyMXN 200-300 ($12-18)
AVFrom 04:00-23:59 regularlyMXN 120-165 ($7.25-10)
Estrella RojaFrom 05:00-23:00 regularlyMXN 200 ($12)

Where Can I Buy My Bus Tickets?

There are quite a few ways to purchase tickets for the bus from Mexico City to Puebla. Mexico, in general, is not one of those places where taking an intercity bus is a stressful chore! These are the main choices: 

  • Buy your ticket in person at the bus station. This is the option we chose because we didn’t mind getting to the station a bit early and knew the seats wouldn’t be sold out.
  • Purchase your ticket in advance through Reservamos.mx. Although this site is only in Spanish, it has the most comprehensive comparison of different bus services.
  • Reserve your ticket through Bookaway.com. This brand operates internationally in different cities around the world, so we’ve used it before and found it a reliable option if you only speak English. Prices are about the same as you would get direct, but they don’t necessarily list all the services. 
  • Go directly to the bus company’s website. If you already know which operator you want to use, just purchase straight from their own e-shop or app. As with Reservamos.mx, ADO and Estrella Roja are all Spanish sites, but they are easy to use with Google Translate handy.

Are There Direct Buses From Mexico City To Puebla?

Day trip to Puebla from Mexico City

Yes, pretty much all the buses are nonstop. Puebla is a popular destination and the first city you encounter heading southeast from CDMX, so there’s plenty of demand for a regular direct route. 

When we were deciding which time to take, it seemed like there were more than 100 departures between ADO, AV, and Estrella Roja from which to pick!

ADO also offers a bus from Mexico City Airport to Puebla. It’s a bit more expensive than from downtown, but if you hop off the plane and want to go straight to Puebla, have at it! The price isn’t so significantly different that it should alter your plans.

If you’re wondering how to get to Puebla from Mexico City on the return journey, there are also loads of buses going the other way each day. All buses go from CAPU, which is the main bus station for Puebla.

How Much Are Bus Tickets To Puebla From Mexico City?

The cheapest tickets are sold for the AV buses, which are ADO’s economy service. The vehicles are a little basic and don’t have an onboard toilet or entertainment system, but at 120-165 MXN (about 7-10 USD) one way, the tickets are a real steal.

Personally, we prefer to spend a little extra and go for the more premium ADO service, which costs between 200-300 MXN (12-18 USD) and departs from the main CDMX stations. It’s only a little more, but there’s a noticeable difference in comfort.

If you opt to go straight from the airport to Puebla, tickets are a bit pricier at roughly 300-400 MXN (18-24 USD).

Estrella Roja operates a slightly cheaper city-to-city service at a flat 200 MXN (12 USD). 

Tip: Bus ticket prices don’t fluctuate based on demand, but the cost does vary online based on how last minute you book. 

How Long Is The Bus Ride From Mexico City To Puebla?

The bus from Mexico City to Puebla can take anywhere from 2 hours to 3 hours. The advertised journey length isn’t always correct, so try not to make any plans that will get screwed up if the bus doesn’t arrive according to schedule.

Our bus was meant to take 2 hours but ended up taking 2.5. Not a big deal because we weren’t in a rush to get somewhere, but it gives you an idea of the unpredictability of the traffic. 

Can You Do A Day Trip To Puebla From Mexico City?

Absolutely! A lot of people do day trips from Mexico City to Puebla because the two cities are quite close together.

Do as we did and you’ll have a good 8 hours in the city, which is enough time to get a flavour of the local life – and to decide whether you want to come back and experience it in more depth!

Best Puebla Tour From Mexico City

day trip from Mexico City to Puebla

If you don’t fancy making your own arrangements, there are quite a few companies that run a day trip from Mexico City to Puebla, including this excellent option.

WHY BOOK THIS TOUR: 

Starting off early in the morning, this tour gives you a full day in Puebla, including plenty of time in the old town centre as well as a visit to the nearby city of Cholula. All the logistics are taken care of, and you can cancel up to 24 hours before the tour time.

All the places you visit are free of charge, so there aren’t any additional fees to worry about. You will, however, want to budget a little extra for food and drinks.

WHAT’S INCLUDED:

  • Round-trip transportation to Puebla.
  • A professional guide.

ITINERARY:

Pickup is from one of the designated spots at either 6.20am or 6.50am. You’ll have a few hours to nap or gaze out the window at the passing scenery before you arrive at the first stop, Cholula.

Part of the wider Puebla metropolitan area, Cholula packs in a remarkable number of churches, the oldest dating all the way back to the 16th century.

The tour devotes particular attention to the unique Church of Santa Maria Tonantzintla, which combines the ostentatious grandeur of the European baroque with indigenous decoration. It’s really quite an incredible blend unlike anything we’ve seen elsewhere in Mexico.

After that, it’s onto Puebla’s historic centre with its monumental cathedral, colourful streets, and buildings covered in azulejo tiles. The whole thing is so charming that it seems fitting that the area has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Admittedly, that’s more because of its well-preserved colonial architecture than just because its lovely to look at, but it’s definitely worth slipping Puebla into your Mexico itinerary.

Private Driver From Mexico City To Puebla

An alternative to tours from Mexico City to Puebla is to hire a private driver to cover the distance for you. 

This option has quite a few pros. It’s fast, you can set your own schedule, there’s no need to worry about the lorries cutting you up, and you’ll get dropped off at a destination to suit your itinerary.

The only major con is that it’s significantly pricier compared to every other method of travel.

Taxi From Mexico City To Puebla

This isn’t an option we have personally tried, but we did ask a couple of private taxi companies for quotes, just out of curiosity. The prices we were quoted were about 235 USD (3,925 pesos) one way. 

Uber from Mexico City To Puebla

Again, this isn’t something we’ve personally tried – and we’re not sure how likely it would be for someone to accept the journey – but the estimated price for an Uber between Mexico City and Puebla is about 2,020 MXN (121 USD). That’s obviously quite a lot less that pre-booking a taxi.

Flights From Mexico City To Puebla

CDMX Airport

There are no Mexico City to Puebla flights, which is hardly surprising given how close together the two locations are. It would just be an enormous waste of time, energy, and money to make the 135km journey by plane!

Does Puebla Have An Airport?

Puebla does have an airport, but there are no direct flights to/from CDMX.

You can fly to/from other cities in Mexico, though, including Tijuana, Cancun, Merida, Monterrey, and Guadalajara. If you’re planning a multi-city trip to the country, that can be quite handy. 

What Airport Do You Fly To For Puebla?

The closest airport to Puebla Mexico is Puebla International Airport. Despite its name, the only international flight that comes in is from Houston, Texas, in the USA.

A more practical option is to fly into CDMX’s Benito Juarez International Airport, which connects to cities all over the world. Once you arrive, you can then catch one of the direct buses from Mexico City airport to Puebla that we’ve already mentioned.

3 BEST Things To Do In Puebla

We could compile a whole list of things to do in Puebla, but these are our top three suggestions that should feature on every itinerary. 

#1 Zocalo de Puebla

Zocalo Puebla is a must visit place when you do a day trip to Puebla from Mexico City

The historic centre of Puebla centres on the Zocalo (town square). Fizzing with ambience, it’s a beautiful place to enjoy some rays on a sunny day while enjoying a churro and watching people go by. 

One side of the Zocalo is lined by the Puebla Cathedral. Started in 1575 but only completed in 1737, the interior is as ornate as you would expect. The thing that stood out most for us was the choir with its three different organs, all in their own style. 

Across the Zocalo from the cathedral is the Pasaje del Ayuntamiento, stylish covered shopping arcade decorated with stained glass where you’ll find several shops and cafes.

#2 Go On A FREE Walking Tour

Free walking tour in Puebla is the best thing to do if you visit Puebla on a day trip from Mexico City

We love good walking tours, especially when it’s free! There’s an excellent one provided by Estacion Mexico Estados, which takes in a whole bunch of interesting places, including the Catedral de Puebla, the Museo de la Revolución Mexicana, and the dazzlingly gold Capilla del Rosario. 

The guide will also take you down the colourful street of Barrio de los Sapos, where you can grab a snack or a souvenir, as well as the Biblioteca Palafaxiana, the oldest public library in the Americas.

This is the ideal tour for day-trippers who want to see many places in a short amount of time. At the end of the experience, you can tip the guide whatever you think it was worth.

There are two time slots daily, one at 11 am and one at 4 pm.

#3 Go On A Food Tour

Food tour

If it’s the gourmet side of Puebla that piques your palate, then we can heartily recommend this tour. Over the course of half a day, you get to sample 15 different dishes, visiting both super-local street-food stalls as well as authentic restaurants.

Serving up a diverse snapshot of the Poblano culture, the guide is an awesome source of information about the culture and history of the city, so make sure you pick her brain as much as possible!

To cap it all off, you get to go home with a recipe book memento containing instructions for how to cook up several classic dishes from Puebla once you return home.

Best Places To Stay In Puebla

🌟top Pick🌟
Cartesiano is our top pick hotel in Puebla Mexico

Cartesiano Boutique & Wellness Hotel

A short walk from the historic centre, this 5-star hotel has a wonderful rooftop pool, several stylish restaurants, and a soothing spa space. Private parking is available for free.

🌟Mid-Range Pick🌟

Casa Azulai Puebla Hotel Boutique

Named for the gorgeous Talavera tiles that decorate the façade, this boutique is full of local flavour, from the courtyard restaurant with its fountains to the 16 rooms and suites with their handcrafted furnishings.

Mexico City To Puebla: FAQs

Is Puebla Worth Visiting?

Puebla is worth visiting for anybody who enjoy their history, their food, and their colonial architecture. Even if you can’t squeeze in an overnighter to really get to grips with the place, the short Mexico City to Puebla distance means it’s a very doable day trip.

Is Puebla a walkable city?

The historic centre is very walkable, as everything is packed into a compact area. Having said that, there are parts of the wider metropolitan area that you will need to use public transport or an Uber to visit if you want to see them, such as Cholula.

Is Puebla Safe?

Overall, yes, Puebla is safe. There are of course the same dangers that tourists face anywhere abroad, such as pickpocketing and the occasional scam. Most of the places you will want to visit as a visitor will be assiduously patrolled by police, so there’s no especial risk of violent crime or kidnapping.

Why is Puebla famous?

Puebla is most famous for its colonial architecture, which dates back to the 1500s and crosses several eras and styles. The city also has a stellar reputation with foodies, as it’s the birthplace of two delicious dishes: mole poblano and chiles en nogada. There are even annual festivals dedicated to these specialities.

How To Get From Mexico City To Puebla: The Wrap-Up

Now that we live in Mexico City part-time, we find the best way to get from Mexico City to Puebla is by bus. If you’re visiting on your first trip, however, you might find that a tour or self-driving is a bit easier to handle. Whatever you decide, make sure you don’t skip over Puebla and its vibrant living history.

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