Mexico has never been more exciting than it is today. A country so beautiful and diverse, it offers everything travelers can desire for any vacation interests or wishes.
Mexico offers countless ways to experience its 3,000+ years of incredible history. With 187 archaeological sites open to the public, it’s easy for travelers to immerse themselves in the ancient world of the Mayans, Aztecs, and many other indigenous tribes, discovering secrets hidden in pyramids, temples, and the depths of the jungle.
No matter where you go, Mexico’s history is an exciting adventure just waiting to be discovered.
Combine that with 34 World Heritage Sites recognized by UNESCO, plus fascinating Spanish colonial history, and there’s a piece of the past ready to enchant any visitor. Just a small sampling of these national treasures includes Yucatan’s spectacular and iconic Chichen Itza, one of the Seven Wonders of the World; Palenque, an ancient Mayan city located amid dense jungle in Chiapas; masterpieces of colonial architecture among magnificent Aztec ruins in Mexico City; and Queretaro’s ornate baroque monuments and ties to Mexico’s independence movement.
Culture and Tradition in Mexico
Mexico’s cultural diversity is legendary. With 68 indigenous groups throughout the country, there’s a near-endless array of traditions to be explored. UNESCO has recognized eight Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity points in Mexico, including traditional Mexican cuisine, Mariachi music, and the Day of the Dead, to name just a few.
Immersive experiences await in Mexico’s enchanting Pueblos Magicos (“Magical Towns”), where visitors can feel like a local instead of a tourist as they wander down cobblestone streets. Taste regional culinary treats, discover local art and experience the warmth of the Mexican people. Culture and tradition are also on display at Mexico’s many fantastic museums—particularly in Mexico City, which boasts the second-highest number of museums in the world.
From miles of stunning coastline to vast desert landscapes, lush jungles, colorful coral reefs, stunning waterfalls, mighty canyons, and more, natural beauty is on fantastic display all throughout Mexico. Golden paradises of sun and sand are scattered along the Mexico Pacific coast, from Acapulco and Mazatlan to Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit. At the same time, the azure waters of the Caribbean beckon from destinations like Cancun, Riviera Maya, and Cozumel, and the desert meets the sea in legendary Los Cabos. Further inland, the wonders of nature include the striking Copper Canyon, with more profound gorges than the Grand Canyon; 181 protected natural areas, like the Calakmul Biosphere in Campeche; scenic expanses of agave in Tequila; and many more. Mexico is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, with over 350 species of birds, some 2,000 types of plants, offering plenty of opportunities to connect with wildlife and experience a variety of ecosystems.
With so much to offer, it’s no surprise that travelers can find experiences of any kind in Mexico. Adventure-seekers can experience different types of adrenaline rushes, from climbing up to one of the highest mountain peaks on the continent to rushing down mighty river rapids and swimming through underground cenotes. Outdoor sports and activities run the gamut from world-class golf courses and prime scuba diving to exciting sportfishing and watersports of all kinds.
Foodies will find culinary paradise throughout the country, sampling everything from traditional Oaxacan dishes to new interpretations at world-renowned restaurants in Mexico City, along with Mexican wines and tequilas, coffee, and chocolate.
Lovers of luxury can choose from countless upscale resorts and pampering spas. At the same time, couples can plan the perfect destination wedding, honeymoon, or romantic escape.
Culture-seekers can join the local party during the many events and festivals held throughout the year, and art aficionados can visit local workshops and galleries to engage directly with their passion. However, travelers want to immerse themselves in Mexico, the ideal experience is out there.
Adventure Travel in Mexico
From extreme sports to nature in all its glory, there’s an adventure for everyone in Mexico.
Nature in all its glory beckons travelers of all ages throughout Mexico. Wildlife encounters will enchant adults and children alike, including whale watching on the Pacific coast and Sea of Cortez, snorkeling among countless tropical fish at the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef in Cozumel and visiting the 26,000 flamingos that call the Ria Lagartos mangrove estuary home in the Yucatan Peninsula.
For something truly unforgettable, travelers can witness the migration of millions of monarch butterflies at the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve, or watch baby sea turtles emerge from their nests in destinations like Oaxaca’s Parque Nacional Lagunas de Chacahua.
Or, for a unique way to see Mexico’s striking landscape, travelers can climb aboard a passenger train to see the impressive Copper Canyon in Chihuahua, a natural wonder that’s estimated to be four times larger than the Grand Canyon. Horseback riding is another option for exploring nature, whether along the gorgeous coastline, deep within the jungle, or on trails that lead to remote lakes and waterfalls.
The ancient tradition lives on in modern Mexico, where 16 million people are considered indigenous, speaking 68 original languages in 364 variations. Many of Mexico’s amazing archaeological sites are easily accessible from prime tourism regions, such as the ancient Mayan commercial port and the walled city of Tulum in Quintana Roo; the ruins of the Aztec Templo Mayor in Mexico City and the nearby massive pyramids of Teotihuacan; and the sprawling and mysterious Mayan city of Chichen Itza. Curious visitors will find much to explore throughout the country, from the colossal Olmec heads in Villahermosa to the imposing temples of Palenque to Comalcalco’s enormous pyramid and Grand Acropolis in Tabasco. Those seeking a truly authentic cultural adventure can visit indigenous communities like the Tarahumara in Chihuahua or the Lacandona in Chiapas for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
The primeval jungles of Mexico call out to adventurers, promising canyons, rivers, waterfalls, and wildlife, all hidden among lush flora.
In the Arco del Tiempo eco-tourism area of Chiapas, travelers can explore canyons 150 feet deep or raft along the Rio La Venta to a jungle camp and watching for scarlet macaws and elusive jaguars.
In San Luis Potosi, the Tamul waterfall can be visited by canoe. In contrast, the Micos cascades, with seven waterfalls, are ideal for waterfall jumping and kayaking.
Campeche is home to the tropical forests of Calakmul, the second-largest extension of tropical forest in the Americas after the Amazon, where visitors can spot more than 86 species of mammals, over 250 species of birds, and some 60 different types of orchids.
Visit the archaeological site of Calakmul is also encouraged. Modern-day explorers in the Yucatan Peninsula can cool off with a dip in a cenote, or underground river, considered sacred to the Mayan.
There’s no better place than Mexico to discover the wonders of the sea, both above and below the waves. Watersport options range from sea kayaking and surfing to scuba diving, parasailing, and much more.
Travelers can take a scenic catamaran cruise, swim with gentle whale sharks, snorkel among sea turtles and shipwrecks, visit with dolphins and giant manta rays in the Bay of Banderas, dive into art at Cancun’s Underwater Museum or head out for some of the world’s most epic sport fishing.
The Sea of Cortez is home to 244 islands, islets and coastal areas just waiting to be explored. At the same time, the protected Sian Ka’an Reserve in Quintana Roo is comprised of intricate coral reefs, millions of fish, mangroves, a hidden cenote, and 23 archaeological sites. And that’s just the beginning!
Adrenaline junkies will find no shortage of epic activities in Mexico to get their blood pumping. Mountain climbers can reach one of the highest peaks on the continent by taking on the Pico de Orizaba in Veracruz.
At the same time, those who prefer water-based thrills can ride down incredible river rapids in Veracruz or San Luis Potosi. Travelers can take to the air on a parachute in Valle de Bravo, climb along with the limestone faces of El Potrero Chico in Nuevo Leon, drive an ATV through the Sierra Madre, or zipline across the incredible Copper Canyon Adventure Park.
Even more, options abound, including venturing into deep caves, rappelling down waterfalls, and mountain biking, to name just a few.
Destination Weddings and Honeymoons in Mexico
Soft sands, sparkling seas, and swaying palms set the scene at Mexico’s world-renowned resorts, always ready and eager to cater to couples. In Los Cabos, the iconic Arch offers a unique backdrop for oceanfront ceremonies, and couples can choose from a long list of award-winning hotels and professional wedding services to accommodate any budget or group size.
On the Pacific Coast, Puerto Vallarta and nearby Riviera Nayarit are favorites for romance, thanks to charming cobblestone streets, magical sunsets, over +300 sunny days per year.
Meanwhile, Mazatlan, the “Pearl of the Pacific,” enchants couples with its dual vibes: the authentic Old Mazatlan area, full of art galleries and history, and the modern Zona Dorada, with beach hotels and restaurants.
Mexico’s Caribbean coast has just as much to offer, with turquoise waters, majestic Mayan sites, and tropical landscapes.
In Cancun, couples and their guests can take advantage of ultra-contemporary hotels and vibrant nightlife, or head a bit south to the exotic beauty and relaxed pace of Playa del Carmen and the Riviera Maya.
Resorts throughout the Yucatan offer top all-inclusive and boutique accommodations, with attentive staff dedicated to making couples’ dreams come true.
For those seeking a more intimate retreat, colonial cities and magical towns are scattered throughout the country. Couples can find their ideal honeymoon hideaway far from the crowds and steeped in local flavor or plan a wedding where the location’s unique character truly comes to life.
Destinations like Guanajuato or San Miguel de Allende create an unforgettable sense of place with cobblestone streets, colorful architecture, local traditions, and venues like ornate temples, antique houses, and haciendas. Merida, on the tip of the Yucatan Peninsula, is vibrant with restored hacienda dwellings, contemporary resorts, historic Spanish sites, and easy access to Mayan ruins.
Elegant Puebla offers endless inspiration for couples, showcasing colonial buildings adorned with painted tiles along with some 70 churches, a stunning cathedral, and a range of boutique and brand accommodations.
Whatever a couple’s personality and tastes, Mexico has the destination, venue, professional planners, and special touches to bring their dreams to life. Wedding venues run the gamut from historic churches and temples to charming haciendas, gorgeous beaches, scenic outdoor terraces, beautiful boutique hotels, luxurious resorts, and more.
Opportunities for wedding customization include a range of wedding and honeymoon packages for all budgets and levels of luxury; local flair like Mariachi bands and Mexican cuisine; cultural elements such as Mayan traditions; and even truly unique options like an underwater ceremony.
Luxury Travel in Mexico
Discover some of the world’s most exceptional luxury experiences in Mexico, from five-star resorts to top-tier golf courses, indulgent spas and beyond
Mexico’s extensive coastline provides an array of picture-perfect settings to play a memorable game of golf. In Cancun, for example, travelers can tee off at 14 different courses, including facilities designed by Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman. At the same time, Riviera Maya’s Mayakoba is the host of the annual OHL Classic on the PGA Tour. Punta Mita, on the Pacific Coast’s Riviera Nayarit, is also home to two Jack Nicklaus-designed courses. At the same time, Puerto Vallarta boasts several championship golf courses from the likes of Tom Weiskopf and Greg Norman.
Then there’s Los Cabos, where more than a dozen golf courses have been designed by a whos-who of names, such as Robert Trent Jones, Jr., Davis Love III, Tom Weiskopf, Jack Nicklaus, and even Tiger Woods.
With its desert-meets-ocean vibe, the landscapes here make for some of the most stunning greens in the country, including Diamante Dunes and Cabo del Sol, two of Mexico’s top-rated offerings.
Relaxation is taken to a whole new level at spas throughout Mexico, where travelers can choose to be pampered in a state-of-the-art facility, a cabana on the beach, or just about anywhere in between.
While traditional treatments are almost always on the menu, a real taste of Mexico indulgence can be enjoyed through native rituals and unique therapies that utilize Mexico’s indigenous traditions and ingredients.
Look for options with local flowers and herbs, coffee, cocoa, and local fruits, or treatments that incorporate an element of Mayan culture. Travelers can also seek out an indigenous-style steam bath, or temazcal, for a time-honored cleansing of the body, mind, and spirit.
Best of the Beaches
East Coast or West Coast, small and intimate or large and sprawling, hidden away or in a hotspot—Mexico’s luxury beach resorts mix upscale amenities with uniquely Mexican experiences for one-of-a-kind vacations. Travelers can choose their preferred type of accommodations, from AAA Five Diamond properties to high-end boutique hotels brimming with culture and character.
Classic favorites for a luxury experience include Cancun, with high-end accommodations in a high-energy atmosphere; quieter Riviera Maya, where cultural opportunities and pampering resorts abound; Los Cabos, with sleek hotels and a slew of scenic golf courses; and Puerto Vallarta, where classic Mexico meets a contemporary resort town.
Those looking for luxury a bit off the beaten path can head to destinations like Cozumel, with a handful of exclusive properties without the crowds; Punta Mita in Riviera Nayarit, a resort hub known for its upscale offerings; Nuevo Vallarta, a Pacific paradise with opportunities for sailing and yachting; or the neighboring towns of Ixtapa and Zihuatanejo, home to several luxury resorts and plenty of authentic charm.
For those who seek an authentic, immersive Mexico experience without sacrificing any luxurious pampering, boutique properties are an ideal option. From eco-luxe offerings in destinations like Tulum to edgy design hotels in Mexico City, there’s a perfect upscale property for every traveler.
The luxury boutique vibe is especially strong throughout the country’s colonial cities, where travelers can find hidden gem hotels—both new properties and restored historical ones—that offer a real sense of their location, be it
Guadalajara, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Puebla, Oaxaca, Merida, or others. The vibes of such hotels run the gamut from artsy and modern to architectural, historic, high-profile, cuisine-focused, or tucked-away. Accommodation types include everything from former convents to restored haciendas, private villas, presidential suites, and more. Above all, it’s sure to be a one-of-a-kind Mexico experience.
Culinary Travel in Mexico
Welcome to foodie paradise. From iconic street food to award-winning chefs experimenting with a mix of traditional and modern ingredients, Mexico’s gastronomy can be savored in countless ways around the country.
UNESCO designated Mexican cuisine as part of the World’s Intangible Heritage, and it’s easy to see why. Mexican chefs start with ancient staples—corn, beans, and chiles—then add other Old- and New-World flavors to create a rich symphony of tastes. All around Mexico, visitors can experience traditional treats at the mercados and puestos on the streets, as well as through the country’s energetic restaurant scene, culinary festivals, and cooking classes.
Just a sampling of what’s on the menu includes specialties such as Oaxaca’s famous seven moles and tamales (which originated in the region); ceviche or anything else with shrimp in Sinaloa, which is known as Mexico’s shrimp capital; Campeche’s x’catic chiles (chiles battered and stuffed with dogfish) and chocolomo (bean stew with pork); adobo-spiced chicken and pork in the Yucatan; barbacoa (meat cooked in large pots until its incredibly tender), the official state dish of Hidalgo; mole poblano, a creamy sauce made with chocolate and chili peppers, born in Puebla; dishes with dried meat in Chihuahua; excellent coffee in Veracruz; and many more delicious ingredients and dishes.
Mexico’s innovative chefs are being recognized on an international level for their remarkable upscale cuisine. Award-winning culinary artists are experimenting with traditional and modern ingredients, techniques, and styles, resulting in dining experiences that will please even the most sophisticated palates.
In Mexico City alone, restaurants Pujol and Quintonil earned spots on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list since 2017. The two also made Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants list, along with Biko, Sud 777, and Dulce Patria.
Outside of Mexico City, the Latin America list recognized Amaranta in Toluca, Pangea in Monterrey, and Corazon de Tierra in the Valle de Guadalupe. Fabulous fine dining can also be found at high-end resorts around the country, which showcase gourmet local and international flavors to delight travelers.
Mexico has gained attention in recent years for its prime wine offerings. In Baja California in particular, internationally acclaimed wineries are attracting visitors to the Valle de Guadalupe, where more than 50 producers offer a taste of some 40 varietals.
While the area has been producing wine for centuries—and yields 90 percent of Mexico’s wine—the region has become a world-class destination for award-winning wine and fine dining.
Foodies flock to the area for a taste of innovative Baja Med cuisine, a unique fusion of Mexican, Mediterranean and Asian flavors and influences.
Baja Med highlights fresh, local ingredients, thanks to fertile soil that supplies top-notch produce, a bounty of seafood from the Sea of Cortez, and even the production of local olive oils. Outside of Baja, other areas for Mexican wine include Sonora and La Laguna in the north, and Zacatecas, Aguascalientes, and Queretaro in Central Mexico.
Tequila is one of the most internationally known products to come out of Mexico. The spirit is so recognized, in fact, that the Agave Landscape and the industrial facilities of Tequila are considered a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
While a wide range of tequilas can be sampled just about anywhere in Mexico, travelers interested in more in-depth discovery can visit ranches and distilleries in the municipalities of Amatitan and Tequila to learn about the production process, different classifications, and designations of origin.
As an added bonus, the one-of-a-kind landscape of blue-toned agave crops is a stunning sight not to be missed.
Flavorful Food Festivals
Delicious events and celebrations take place throughout the year to highlight Mexican ingredients and cuisine, serving as a prime opportunity for travelers to taste dishes and experience the local culture.
Highlights from the roster include—but are certainly not limited to—Morelia in Boca, a festival focusing on domestic products and traditional cuisine held every May in Morelia (in the state of Michoacan); harvest festivals, celebrated throughout the state of Queretaro, which give visitors a chance to squash grapes the old-fashioned way.
Cancun-Riviera Maya Wine & Food Festival, a high-profile event is featuring gala dinners, live music, wine tastings, classes, and lectures.
The annual San Miguel de Allende Food Festival, with wine tastings, product exhibits, tasting menus, and entertainment.