A quick look at Mexico reveals a few statistical surprises.
For those counting it’s the sixth largest country in the world (eleventh by population), first in the Americas in UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and the fourth most bio-diverse country in the world.
Throw in some stunning beaches. Take it up a notch with world renown culinary creations, then add one of the world’s great emerging economies.
It’s no wonder then that 32 million tourists a year open up their wallets here – and there’s no reason you shouldn’t be the next.
Here are 11 things to do in Mexico.
Cruise The Mayan Riviera
This stretch of coastline along the Gulf of Mexico is famous for its expansive beaches and crystal clear waters. With resort destinations like Cancun and Playa del Carmen you can go full on holiday mode here whether you’re looking for a big party or a relaxing day snorkeling.
Check Out Chichen Itza
This massive pre-Columbian city built by the Mayans on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula is one of the great mythical cities referred to in Mesoamerian literature. It’s dominated by an imposing step pyramid called El Castillo and filled with a ton of graphic stone carvings of the day.
See Mexico City’s Historic Centre
What was once the ancient Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan is now a city with a metropolitan population of over 20 million.
Away from the sprawl you’ll find loads of 16th century colonial architecture cut up by cobblestone streets in the Historic Centre. The city really comes to life here, especially around Plaza de la Constitucion, one of the world’s biggest squares.
Scarf Down Street Food
Especially in the capital you won’t be able to understand Mexico without at least one meal at one of the country’s endless food stalls.
Start the day with a tamale (a cheese or meat stuffed corn based dough steamed in a corn husk) breakfast and then go for a classic taco of your choice for lunch, dinner, or even a snack.
Discover The Copper Canyon
One of the country’s most visited natural attractions finds itself in the northern state of Chihuahua. Here locals brag that Barranca del Cobre is actually larger and deeper than the Grand Canyon. Explore the area with a scenic rail trip or ante up for an unforgettable horseback excursion.
Take in Guanajuato
This colourful colonial city is a cluster of tinted houses framed perfectly on its surrounding hills. Get into the city centre and wander through postcard worthy squares and rainbow surroundings that will make you want to put down a stool and start painting.
Plunge into Puetro Vallarta
On the Pacific coast it’s hard to go wrong with this port city known for its green spaces and beachside boulevards. Head to Banderas Bay to snorkel with stingrays by day and have some of the world’s top nightlife by night.
Learn at the Museo Nacional de Antropologia
There’s no better way to learn the history of the land than this 8 hectare museum with its 23 permanent exhibition halls. With an exclusive coverage of pre-Columbian Mexico you’ll see everything from the urban design of the Mayans to the cosmology of the Aztecs.
Get Mythical at Teotihuacan
Mesoamerica’s greatest city was the site where Aztecs believe the gods gathered to plan the creation of man. The City of Gods is a mere 40 kilometres northeast of Mexico City and is famous for its two massive pyramids called the Temple of the Sun and the Temple of the Moon.
Head For Los Cabos
The two towns of Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo make up one of the most well known holiday destinations in the country. The stunning rock formations creating isolated coves make nature king here, but it’s the surfing at Zippers or camel rides through Desert Park Natural Reserve that take it to a whole new level.
Hit Up the Ancient Fortress of Tulum
Just around the corner from Cancun and Playa del Carmen is this super famous Mayan settlement perched on a cliff 12 meters above the Caribbean Sea. It’s one of the most well preserved coastal Mayan sites and highlights are the Castillo and the Temple of Frescoes.