One of Mexico City's most beloved rural regions, La Magdalena Contreras stretches deep into the mountains. But contrary to what many visitors (and residents) believe, there was never a historical figure named Magdalena Contreras.
The name is actually a combination of a 16th-century Franciscan and Dominican hermitage, dedicated to Santa María Magdalena. That site resulted in the renaming of an original town (see below) which became La Magdalena Atlitic.
"Contreras" comes from the name of a family of textile magnates. Largely powered by the waterworks at Los Dinamos, (today a famous national park), the textile mills here dominated the landscape for hundreds of years.
One of the greenest and most natural areas of Mexico City, today Magdalena Contreras is an important and growing ecological destination. There are areas of social, cultural and religious interest, but most people come for outdoor adventure, rock climbing, hiking, or similar forest based and outdoor activities. And of course, the public markets make any visit a feast for the stomach as well as for the eyes. They're all listed below.