Mexico is a place where you will be deprived of nothing. Be it snow-capped mountains or exotic beaches, hot deserts or volcanoes, Mexico is endowed with some best tourist attractions this world can offer. This fifth largest country of South America has a strange combination of weather starting from chill winters in the inland areas and scorching summers in the southern part. The country is gifted with islands covering an area of 6,000 sq km. With its capital in Mexico City, this country generally comprises of Catholics. Mexico went through different phases of revolution and came in contact with various communities and ethnic groups. As there is no official religion in this country, it can be addressed as a cosmopolitan country. The official language of Mexico is Spanish.
When it comes to adventure and activities, Mexico is the place to make your heart travel. Full of jovial and lively population, this country produces some finest cuisines. In a country where more than 10 million people live, you will hardly find any form of anarchy or imbalance. This clean and prosperous country has some attractive cities like Acapulco, Toluca, Tijuana, etc. The best time to visit Mexico is during October to May as the climate remains fascinating. The tourists may choose from the variety of fabulous resorts and hotels to have a gala time.
As compared to other Latin American Countries, Mexico is economically much more advanced and the people are well organized and have a good civic sense. On arrival one needs to fill two important forms at the airport, the first being the “Temporary Visa” and the second is the “Taxation and Customs” form also known as “Hacienda”.
Getting In and Around
Having a most wide connectivity, Mexico has 26,622 km of railroads and 4,000 km of Highways offering swift and convenient journey. Intercity bus routes are available along with some Trolleybuses, Metro buses, etc. The visitors may also travel in the local transport like Pesero and Water Taxi for a memorable journey.
To visit Mexico, you can avail international flights from all over the world and reach anywhere in Mexico with more than 50 airports located all around the country. Benito Juárez International Airport, Cancún International Airport, and Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla International Airport are top three busiest airports in Mexico. Air travel is also an option for getting around Mexico, but because it remains regulated, it is costly.
Generally people from the United States visit Mexico. Tourists from the US reach the country by land or by plane. Even though the passenger trains are available in limited numbers in Mexico, yet some people prefer to travel to Mexico via train. Only a few rail lines operate in places like the Copper Canyon in the northern state of Chihuahua. This specific line is also known as the Chihuahua Pacific Railway since its final destination is the Pacific coastal city of Tobolobampo in the state of Sinaloa. In the state of Jalisco another railway line connects which travels from the state capital city, Guadalajara to its final destination in the small town of Tequila. Because of such a reason, this line is called the Tequila Express. Besides, in the Yucatan Peninsula there is a line of passenger trains which run from Villahermosa through Campeche, Merida, and Playa del Carmen. The final destination of this particular line is the city of Cancun. This train also runs through a few Mayan ruins, including Chichen-Itza. It, therefore, got its name of Expreso Maya, which is a Spanish term for the Mayan express.
Traveling to Mexico by car is also not a bad decision for tourists, though the Department of Transportation advises tourists to travel to Mexico by air, sea, or walking wherever possible. In Mexico, traffic generally flows and roads are wide. Also, they are mostly one way; therefore, more conducive to flowing traffic. Driving is much more of an “intuitive” experience in Mexico City. People tend to go in and out of lanes as they please, with the use of turning signals being the exception, rather than the rule. Potholes are more often than not seen in the interiors of the country as are pedestrians and cyclists. The natives of Mexico often do not respect even the most basic traffic rules. Tourists are advised to be very careful at night. Travel in Mexico can be a bit expensive via roadways as there are several toll roads, but they are worth the security, comfort, and speed.
Reaching Mexico by bus is another option. There are many bus companies based in Mexico with branch offices in the major US cities. Tickets can be bought for as little as $60. These provisions are provided mainly by Spanish authorities. The intercity bus network is also very good and one can travel very comfortably with first-class bus companies. There are “peseros” or midi-buses that are not quite as comfortable as the bus or the metro, but take you anywhere and everywhere. Public transport in Mexico is generally quite safe, though not at night. There are reservations in all types of buses. Buses cover most of the city. The sign in front of the bus indicates the final destination. Buses are entered from the front and exited through the rear door. However, tourists should possess small changes for bus fare.
If you want to come to Mexico by boat, then you have to cross the border from Guatemala.
Mexico’s capital has a very good infrastructure and very cheap public transport. The metro system is quite extensive, covering virtually the whole city with up to nine different routes. You can get a map of the routes and stations at the entrance of the metro and can also buy the tickets there. Having entered the metro with a ticket, you can change as many trains and routes as you like without using another ticket. The fare is inexpensive and transferring from one line to another can be done at no extra cost. The metro is currently undergoing extensive expansion. There are two Airport Metro stations in Mexico.
The omnipresent green beetle taxis are cheap and easy to find. But, as Mexico is not so safe. Tourists are made aware of locking the doors of the taxi and keeping the windows shut while in a taxi.
The Mexican nightlife is very vibrant and exciting. Nightlife in Mexico features a large variety of top-name entertainers, international shows, jazz groups, rock groups, traditional Mexican music, and dancing. Spanish flamenco dancers and gypsy violinists are a big time tourist attraction. Mexico buzzes with panoramic restaurants and intimate bars concentrated in the Mexico City that offer excellent music and assorted cuisine. Even hotels come with some of the best bars and restaurants. The main nightspots are on Avenida Insurgentes, the longest avenue in the capital. The Condesa district, on the other hand, gives a sweet atmosphere with nice coffee shops and restaurants. Acapulco, another city in Mexico is known as ‘the city that never sleeps’, with bars and discos lining the streets throughout the year. You may also watch the impressive
Light and Sound show at the archaeological site of the famous Teotihuacan. The awing display of colored lights, poetic dialog, and music is worth watching. Thus, nightlife promotes tourism in the city. Its discos play the best current hits and live action for all tastes. Pubs are frequented by the natives and tourists. The Liverpool pub is one of the most famous pubs in the city.
Mexico has a total of over 300 cinemas, including modern multiplex halls of up to 15 screens. This is one of the favorite city pastimes in Mexico. The best-known theatres for live drama or comedy are the Centro Teatral Manolo Fábregas and the Teatro Insurgentes. These theatres portray both classic and contemporary music concerts by local and international artists which can be enjoyed at the Auditorio Nacional, Foro Sol, Teatro Metropólitan, Palacio de los Deportes, and the monumental Estadio Azteca. The Teatro del Palacio de Bellas Artes is beyond doubt the best place for classical music and opera performances along with the Ollin Yoliztli, the Sala Nezahualcoyotl, and Auditorio Blas Galindo.
The best shopped items for tourists in Mexico include silverware, ceramics, and locally made pottery, woven wool blankets (sarapes), brightly colored scarves in wool or silk (rebozos), richly embroidered Charro hats, straw work, blown glass, embossed leather, hard- and semi-precious stones, gold and silver jewelry, finely pleated shirts for men in cotton voile (Guayaberas), white dresses embroidered with multi-colored flowers (huipiles). All these are sold in the markets and little hammocks. Tourists can do their best shopping in Mexico City, Acapulco, Campeche, Cuernavaca, Guadalajara, Mérida, Oaxaca, San Miguel de Allende, and Taxco. The shopping hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. from Mondays to Saturdays.
Mexico has gobs of interesting places. Some of them are: