Next to Bosque de Chapultepec, two nearby colonias, known as La Condesa and La Roma, are filled with fading 1920s and 1930s architecture, sun-dappled parks, and a wide variety of eateries that cater to the city's young and trendy. The capital's elite were concentrated here at the turn of the 20th century. In the late 1990s a tide of artists, entrepreneurs, and foreigners brought a wave of energy. La Condesa and La Roma are a must-see in spring, when the jacarandas are in bloom.
La Condesa is the more outwardly charming of the two, with a lively nightlife scene catering to the younger set. Grittier La Roma is hip, home to some important art galleries, cafés, mezcalerías, markets, and more.
Although it's possible to walk to Colonia Condesa from the Bosque de Chapultepec, you'd have to trek along busy, heavily trafficked roads; it's best to take a sitio taxi to the circular Avenida Amsterdam. Loop around Amsterdam until you reach Avenida Michoacán, where you can check out the boutiques and peek down the side streets. On Avenida Michoacán you'll find a sitio taxi stand—hop in for another short cab ride, this time to Colonia Roma's Plaza Río de Janeiro and more atmospheric strolling. The Condesa's nucleus is the restaurant zone (ask your taxi driver to take you to the neighborhood's zona de restaurantes).