While other destinations in this part of the world also deserve a visit, such as Brazil and the US, Mexico is worth frequenting for a vacation away. A wonderful country, there is much to see and do on holiday in Mexico, and holidaymakers everywhere are finally discovering the delights of this great nation.
Capable of catering for the trickiest of travelers, the country in the southern portion of North America is growing in terms of its reputation yearly. While many people still associate the nation with drug cartels and violence, there is also an increasing amount of travelers who look past that and explore the abundance of positives that Mexico has to offer. In fact, there is a strong argument to suggest that everyone should holiday in Mexico at least once.
The important thing to understand about Mexico as a tourist destination is its diversity. The country welcomed in 38 million tourists in 2022. It’s the sixth-most visited country in the world by tourist arrivals, even beating vacation hotspots like Greece. As we shall see, many of the tourists go to relax in the brilliant beach resorts, but many others view Mexico as an opportunity for more adventurous travel.
But Mexico is a wonderful option for all stripes of tourist. Here’s why below.
Mexico’s Beaches Are the Best
While this particular claim is entirely subjective, it’s not completely farfetched to suggest that Mexico is home to the best beaches in the world. In fact, when looking at go-to destinations like Cancun and Playa del Carmen, then it’s an entirely reasonable opinion to have. Mexico’s beach offering is strong thanks to 6,000 miles of pristine coastline, the weather is hot, and there are some great hotels and resorts right on the beach that are capable of looking after you extremely well.
Of course, the big hitters like Cancun and Playa del Carmen tend to hog the limelight in terms of tourists, but there are many more low-key beach resorts to explore if you like things a little quieter. Lagunas de Chachua, Costa Maya, and Cabo Pulmo are among the less frequently advertised beautiful beach resorts. Lagunas de Chachua is a particular gem. A surfer’s paradise, it sits nestled on the confluence of the Pacific and the Chachua Lagoon. It’s paradise.
Explore Mystical Mayan Ruins
Mexico’s rich history is another clear reason why people are now visiting the country. The various Mayan ruins that can be seen throughout the nation are particularly intriguing, with the once-great Mayan civilization being felt everywhere. The Chichén Itzá ruins definitely deserve a visit, while the world-renowned Kukulkan Pyramid is also stunning. The Yucatan Peninsula is packed full of temples, cenotes, pyramids, and loads more, too.
Overall, for people with an interest in history and a particular fascination in the Mayans, there are some incredible sites to witness in Mexico. Chichén Itzá and others do have that sense of over-tourism, however, particularly when you factor in the ruins have up to three million visitors per year. But you can find plenty more gems off the beaten track. Ek Balam is perhaps our favorite alternative, but there are plenty more dotted around the country. Do a little research, and you’ll find lots to explore.
See a Proper Mariachi Band in the Flesh
Whether you’re in Mexico City exploring the market areas or you’re relaxing in a bar with a sea view in the Maldives, the sounds of Mexico usually aren’t far away in the shape of a mariachi band. As seen in movies like El Mariachi and in games that showcase Mexican festivities and the role these talented musicians play, such as the 5 Mariachis game, a Mexican fiesta isn’t quite the same without a mariachi band. Witnessing one in the country of their origin is as authentic as you can get, with mariachi bands seen everywhere as the population continues to embrace them.
Of course, you might find the idea of mariachi bands and sombreros a little inauthentic, and the Mexican tourist industry does play up to the stereotype a bit. But when you find the entertainment venues where the locals go, you’ll look at mariachi music in a whole new light.
Mexican Hospitality Is Unbeatable
From the delicious fresh food to the welcoming people, Mexican hospitality is remarkable. The regional food to sample is simply delightful, with everything from street dishes to Mexican fine-dining on offer wherever you are in the country. Tacos are a must, too, while the abundance of spice in dishes might leave you needing to taste some of the country’s fine beverages.
One should always remember that there is a difference between Mexican food and Tex-Mex food. Most of us in North America and Europe are exposed to the latter. It’s fine, but some of the most gorgeous Mexican dishes are much more subtle than the spice-stuffed burritos you may be used to at home.
Even in the hotels or villas you decide to frequent, Mexican people are always happy to see you and showcase their love and passion for their country. You might even make friends with local people while you’re there, too. Most staff in the hospitality industry will speak English, but if you try to speak a little Spanish, it’s always appreciated and will go a long way.
Enjoy Water Sports and Marine Life
Another strong selling point that Mexico boasts is the abundance of activities that you can enjoy there. You can do anything from cage diving with sharks to whale watching off the coast of Baja, while taking a hot air balloon ride or going fishing in the deep is also recommended. You can also surf, kayak, scuba-dive in Mexico's unique cenotes, and a whole lot more.
Miscellaneous Mexico Travel Advice
Mexico is a large and diverse country, so when we speak in generalizations, it probably underserves the abundance of choices and experiences available to tourists. As mentioned earlier, there are problems in the country with violence and cartels, but these are usually far away from the tourist areas.
Whatever you decide to do, research your trip before you go, particularly if you intend to explore areas away from the tourist-friendly zones. Still, if you decide to holiday in Mexico, it’s more likely than not that you’ll have the trip of a lifetime!