Mexican Cities and Regions

No matter where you live, Mexico is a popular vacation destination. Whether your interests lie in fishing, hiking and exploring, enjoying the night life, or anything in between, Mexico has something for everyone.

Tijuana

© Omar Bárcena - Tijuana

The border between Tijuana and the United States is the most crossed border in the world. The Arco Reloj Monumental proclaims “Bienvenidos a Tijuana”, which means "Welcome to Tijuana".

Points of interest include:

For a guided tour of the city, Tijuana Bike Tours offer three-hour bicycle tours that will acquaint you with the history of the city, as well as current attractions. Fusion food is the specialty of The Bajamed Kitchen and Rosarito Beach offers spectacular sunset views to the diners at its superb restaurants.

Puerto Vallarta

© David Dixon - Puerto Vallarta

With a climate similar to Hawaii, Puerto Vallarta is a very popular vacation destination. Home to dozens of art galleries, cultural festivals, and public sculptures, Puerto Vallarta appeals to the romantic side, while the balmy weather makes it ideal for sports, such as:

The Botanical Gardens are ideal for stopping to smell the roses and The Malecon is a perfect destination for shopping.

Other destinations include:

Guerrero

© Comisión Mexicana de Filmaciones - Taxco, Guerrero

Guerrero is a state that houses many other towns, such as:

Although a beautiful area, Guerrero, which means warrior in Spanish, can be violent and visitors are urged to use caution during their stay.

Acapulco

© Prayitno - Acapulco

Only four hours from Mexico City, many movies have been filmed at Acapulco and it has been the vacation site of choice for many celebrities and has earned a reputation for partying and nightlife. Nicknamed the “Pearl of the Pacific,” Acapulco offers something for everyone, whether the interests lie in fishing, snorkeling and diving, shopping, or museums and history.

In addition, its impressive 136-foot cliffs at La Quebrada host cliff-divers who impress both tourists and locals alike. Beautiful beaches and fantastic restaurants fit every budget and taste.

Natural attractions include:

San Carlos

© Bobo Uzala - San Carlos

Located just four hours from Nogales, Arizona, San Carlos is a popular retirement destination as well as a popular vacation destination for tourists of all ages. Situated on the Sea of Cortez, San Carlos is home to beautiful beaches that offer diving and snorkeling, kayaking, and off-shore fishing.

Two marinas with paved launch ramps and repair and maintenance services will appeal to the boating enthusiast.

Tennis courts and an 18-hole championship golf course appeal to the sports minded, and the shopping and galleries appeal to all.

Restaurants offer fantastic seafood in addition to American, Mexican, and Sonoran cuisine; private home rentals can make your stay more comfortable. For those who intend to retire, San Carlos offers excellent values on prime residential real estate.

Additional points of interest are:

Izamal

© Eneas de Troya - Izamal

With an average temperature in the low 90s and little annual rainfall, Izamal is the ideal vacation destination for those who like a warm, dry climate. Located in the Mexican state of Yucatan, Izamal was home to many pre-Columbian Mayans and considered to be the home of their sun god Kinich Kak Moo and host his pyramid.

In addition to the Mayan ruins, tourist attractions include:

Veracruz

© Christopher Rose

The port city of Veracruz offers tourists a variety of entertainments from ancient archeology to current night life. San Juan de Ulua was the primary military fortress in the 1500s and is now open to tourists.

El Baluarte de Santiago is a bulwark constructed in 1635 and contains a display of pre-Hispanic weapons and jewelry.

Stop for refreshment at Cafe La Parroquia, which has been serving residents and visitors for more than 200 years.

The heart of Veracruz, the Zocalo, or the Plaza de Armas, is the town square and offers many charming cafes as well as live music and many types of dancing. The Malecon,or the boardwalk, offers souvenir shops, local crafts, street performers, and sight-seeing buses.

Other attractions include the Veracruz Aquarium, Tlacotalpan, and the beaches of Boca del Rio, Punta Mocambo, and Punta Anton Lizardo, which offers the Veracruz reefs.

Cabo San Lucas

© Rémy DUGOUA - Cabo San Lucas

Cabo San Lucas has become the destination spot for celebrities and partying. However, it is also the destination spot for unrivaled snorkeling, quaint shops offering local wares, pristine deserts, and diving in the Sea of Cortez' coral reefs.

Those with a love of fishing can bring their daily catch to many of the local restaurants, where the chefs will prepare it.

Some specific attractions are:

Santa Rosalia

© Ricardo CA. - Santa Rosalia

Home to some unique structures, Santa Rosalia provides a glimpse into the past. Built of galvanized iron, Santa Barbara Church was designed in 1884 by French architect Gustave Eiffel and is adorned with chandeliers and stained glass windows imported from Europe.

El Bolero Bakery has served residents and visitors alike scrumptious fresh baked French bread since 1901.

In the late 19th century, El Boleo, a French company, acquired the copper mining rights for Santa Rosalia and the local museum houses artifacts aplenty from this era. Mining equipment, furnitures, tools, and a train used in the mines are all on display at the Museum of Mining History.

Central Mexico

© Trako Antonio - Queretaro

For those more interested in culture than partying, central Mexico may be the ideal vacation destination. Comprised of three cities, Queretaro, San Miguel de Allende, and Guanajuato City, the proliferation of museums, mine tours, abundant art and music, and ancient ruins make central Mexico attractive to a broad spectrum of visitors.

Its pleasant climate and abundance of cultural activities have enticed many retirees from the United States and Canada. Queretaro, San Miguel de Allende, and Guanajuato City are all UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

 

Ensenada Harbour

© J. Stephen Conn - Ensenada Harbour

 

Oaxaca

© Ron Mader - Oaxaca

Any vacationer or sightseer can easily be entertained in Oaxaca. An abundance of sights and landmarks, museums, tours, nature activities, cultural events, restaurants, and so forth, provide almost limitless opportunities for entertainment.

A few of the available points of interest are:

July visitors will be enthralled by the Guelaguetza, a spectacular festival that features costumes, dancing, food, music, and local crafts.

Mazatlan

© D Guisinger - Mazatlan

With a wide variety of attractions, Mazatlan is another destination spot for the tourist or vacationer. Those who enjoy shopping and theater should visit the Plaza Machado and the Angela Peralta theater, with restaurants, live music, and arts and crafts displays.

The massive Immaculate Conception Cathedral is impressive no matter the religious affiliation. Located close to the Farmer's Market in the heart of Mazatlan, a nearby park facilitates excellent pictures of the church.

Los Clavadistas are skilled cliff divers who jump from impressive heights into shallow water. Donations are suggested but not required.

Other attractions are:

Gulf of Mexico

© RahulR - Gulf of Mexico Sunset

Cancun, Playa del Carmen, and Cozumel comprise the area of the gulf of Mexico known as the Mayan Riviera, which hosts more than 5 million visitors annually.

Activities such as snorkeling along the reefs that abound with tropical fish, scuba diving in an underwater museum, aquatic sculptures submerged at depths of up to 25 feet, swimming with the stingrays and dolphins, and much more are delights to be found nowhere else. Mayan ruins abound as do restaurants and shopping.

Cancun

© dronepicr - Cancun Beach

Whether it's an intimate getaway or a family vacation, Cancun provides a unique experience. Visit a turtle farm, tour the jungle in a jeep, or ride the Aqua-twister. Museums, bars, boat tours, archaeological ruins, and more are available, such as:

Nine golf courses delight the avid golfer and an abundance of nature and wildlife tours will enchant children of all ages.

Cozumel

© Adventures of KM&G-Morris - Cozumel

Cozumel is a delight to everyone who visits and has something for everyone. The innovative Clear Lounge Underwater Oxygen Bar provides scented, enriched oxygen for guests while they message friends and family, shoot bubble guns, or play Jenga.

Sightseeing at Chichen Itza comes with a lunch of indigenous food. The Atlantis submarine adventure dives to Chankanaab, about 100 feet below the surface where passengers will revel in the abundance of colorful marine life. A glass-bottomed boat tour is available for those who are not keen on submarines but still want to enjoy the sight of the marine life.

Other destinations include:

Playa Del Carmen

© newelly54 - Playa del Carmen

Visitors to Playa del Carmen must visit one or more cenotes, which are clearwater pools fed by fresh, underwater springs. Their coolness is quite welcome when the day grows warm and humid.

The Xel Ha lagoon hosts a beautiful, two-hour floating ride down the Rio de la Vida, or River of Life, and ends in a zipline.

Snorkeling at Akumal beach provides up close interaction with sea turtles and other marine animals.

A day trip to Coba Archaeological Park reveals Mayan ruins in abundance, about 10 percent of them have been uncovered. Skydiving, water sports, day trips, tours and excursions, are available to suit any preference and provide the experience of a lifetime.

Ixtapa

© Gerald Lau - Ixtapa

Home to many spectacular beaches and parks, Ixtapa offers horseback riding, ATV tours, golfing, scuba diving, and much more.

Outdoor activities:

Cultural activities:

All these, along with the nightlife at Kopados Bar, Pecados, Senor Frog's, or Christine, will complete the vacation at Ixtapa.

Huatulco

© Meredith P. - Huatulco

Outdoor attractions abound in Huatulco and include:

Four day-spas are available to work out the tight muscles from the outdoor activities:

San Felipe Baja

© Tim Buss - San Felipe Baja

San Felipe Baja is known for its outdoor activities, specifically beach activities. Whether it's horseback riding on the beach, participating in various water sports, fishing, or just sun bathing, San Felipe Baja's beautiful beaches can accommodate it.

Walk along the Malecon, or boardwalk, and see street performers, street vendors, food carts, and the lively culture for which Mexico is famous.

The Capilla de la Virgen de Guadalupe is a local shrine situated atop a hill, and provides a fantastic view of the surrounding area including the local lighthouse.

Mexico City

© Kasper Christensen - Mexico City

Ciudad de Mexico, or Mexico City, is more than 7300 feet above sea level, so exercise caution when embarking on strenuous activity. Mexico's first constitution was signed at Zocalo, or the Plaza of the Constitution, in 1813 and is an ideal starting point for exploration of the city.

Landmarks to explore include: