Exotic, diverse and beautiful, from its sprawling cities to its rocky desert landscapes, from dense jungle treks to its Day of the Dead vigils, Mexico is one of the most alluring reasons to venture south of the US border on your next vacation. Flights to Mexico can be had at a snip if you do your research, and once you arrive, transport, accommodation and activities tend to be extremely cheap. Here are some suggestions for your exploration of this delicious destination.
A thrumming, overcrowded cultural carousel ride, no seasoned traveller will want to miss their opportunity to experience the mayhem that is Mexico City. Once the seat of the ancient Aztec civilization, today the surface of the city is peppered with relics of its history, most notably in its bright colonial buildings. Wander through the pretty cobbled streets of old neighbourhoods like San Angel to escape the bustle, especially on a Saturday, when an artisan market kindles to tout beautiful paintings, handicrafts and sculptures to passers-by.
Just 68 miles southeast of Mexico City lies the city of Puebla. Among its many draws is the city’s unique geological makeup; the smallest volcano in the world is thought to be nestling in one of its suburbs! Cuexcomate is only 13 metres tall, and visitors can climb down into its centre via a spiral staircase. Besides this must-see attraction, Puebla has often been described as Mexico’s gastronomic capital. Quesadillas and tacos come as standard, but what you really want to try is the mole, a notoriously rich and fiendishly delicious sauce made with over 30 ingredients, including rich, luxuriant chocolate.
Lazy days of white sands, swaying palms and a Caribbean vibe typify a vacation in laid-back Cancun, a haven for travellers who want to shake off the dust of the city and settle down with a chilled Corona. But if you can drag yourself away from the pool, there’s much to recommend the nearby area, including the blissful biosphere reserve of Sian Ka’an home to hundreds of tropical birds, the underwater museum lodged in the depths of the nearby Caribbean and the downtown delights of the city proper. Not to mention Chichen Itza, the dominant temple of the Yucatan peninsula, and an essential morning excursion.
It’s accessible, it’s cheap, but Mexico is unlike any other place in the world. More a travel event than a travel destination, this country has it all, history, culture, cuisine and natural beauty by the bucket-load. All you need is the time to take it all in.