60 Best Things To Know Before Visiting Mexico – Mexico Travel Tips For First Timers
We will tell you about Mexico travel tips and all the cool facts about Mexico and things to know before visiting Mexico for first-timers.
This post will be your go-to guide to get to know more of Mexico and what awaits you from amazing beaches, beautiful landscapes and Natural Parks, Festivals to delicious food to try in Mexico from first-timers to seasoned travelers.
Mexico Travel Tips And Best Things To Know Before Visiting Mexico
1. IS IT SAFE TO TRAVEL IN MEXICO
If you are traveling from a Western country to Mexico. If you will be vigilant and act accordingly and responsibly you will not have any problem, just use common sense.
Try to be cautious when withdrawing money in the ATM take a look around, avoid walking around at night and take a taxi instead. Mexico isn’t that dangerous. So yes! It is safe to travel in Mexico.
2. CASH IN MEXICO
Mexico has its own currency called the Mexican Peso. A $1 USD=19 MXN. There are lots of ATMs and exchange currency in many parts of the country. And you have to know that dollars is very common and well-accepted in the country.
3. VISA FRIENDLY IN MEXICO
Facts about Mexico for citizens of the United States, Germany, the Philippines, the UK, Spain, Japan and many others. Mexico allows visa-free travel both for tourist and business purposes to visitors staying for 180 days or less.
4. BEST TIME TO VISIT IN MEXICO
There are 2 seasons dry and wet season. The rainy season starts in May. The best time to visit Mexico is from the months of November to April because it is the months of the dry season. However, lots of tourists prefer to travel from January to March since it’s not peak season but it can be rainy for a few days.
5. HEALTH TRAVEL INSURANCE
Things to know before visiting Mexico we recommend always bringing travel insurance when traveling abroad just in case you have any problems. You can always have food Poisson, fever or any other kind of disease.
BOOK YOUR TRAVEL INSURANCE
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FACTS ABOUT MEXICO
6. LEARNING SPANISH OR SPEAKING ENGLISH IN MEXICO
Another learning opportunity in Mexico is to learn Spanish. There are a lot of Spanish classes in Mexico offering packages with different services. In most of the tourist areas Mexican people can manage speaking English but it will be really useful to learn some basics in the Spanish language.
7. MEXICAN PEOPLE ARE VERY FRIENDLY
Are the Mexican very friendly? Mexican people are very friendly people. Just a few of them will be able to communicate in English don’t forget their language is Spanish. It will be nice when interacting with Mexican trying to practice a few Spanish words, they will love to hear them.
8. MEXICO ISN’T SO CHEAP
You will have to pay an entrance fee for Natural Parks, around $3-4 USD for a dish in a local restaurant. We will tell you below the accommodation, food budget and general entrance fees and tour prices in Mexico.
9. ACCOMMODATION BUDGET TRAVEL IN MEXICO
A total of $20 USD would be the range of your budget for accommodation in Mexico. There are hotels mid- budget for $50-70 USD and you can find luxury accommodation starting from $120 USD.
10. FOOD BUDGET TRAVEL IN MEXICO
Your daily food budget travel in Mexico could be a total of $8-10 USD if you eat in local places. If you are in a budget you can go for street food all around the country. You can buy tacos for $1 USD. If you are going for fine dining restaurants starts from $10 USD per person for a meal.
11. TOUR/ENTRANCE FEES IN MEXICO
There are many places to visit in Mexico a few of them require an entrance fee and others are free of charge. If you visit ruins or cenotes the entrance fee is around $4-9 USD.
You can visit some Ancient Ruins, National Parks and some beautiful islands that Mexico has to offer. There are also a few spots in Mexico where you can go without paying an entrance fee. Some of them will require a guide and others you can go on your own.
12. WI-FI AND INTERNET IN MEXICO
Wi-Fi is everywhere in Mexico and it works great in hotels. Restaurants and convenience stores often have free Wi-Fi in their places. We advise that you get a sim card in Mexico if you need to catch up with some work online. Internet works great in the cities in Mexico: Guadalajara, Mexico City, Oaxaca and even smaller cities you will not have any problem.
You can get two different sim card companies in Mexico if you travel as a couple since the coverage can change depending on the company that you choose. It will be challenging to find Wi-Fi while traveling in a few islands, beaches, mountains and desert will be hard to get great connections.
13. ADAPTER IN MEXICO
In our Mexico travel tips you should know they use the American adapter. A few places make it possible to fit your European adapter in the plug. If you are coming from European countries, we recommend you to bring an American adapter to be able to charge everywhere.
14. LOCAL TRANSPORTATION IN MEXICO
For local transportation in Mexico Taxis and Uber are cheap in Mexico so convenient in the cities for short distances. Public buses around the cities cost around $1 USD. There are cities like Mexico City with metro and it’s a great experience to move around the city as a tourist for $3-4 USD.
A long-distance bus ride can cost you for about $25-30 USD. A bus from Cancun to Mexico City will take 14 hours. Air travel is a more expensive option but sometimes flights are similar to the bus fares. The flight is great for traveling faster and do not have a lot of baggage since prices are depending on how much luggage you bring.
15. POLICE AND SECURITY GUARDS ARE EVERYWHERE IN MEXICO
Police, militarist and security guards are everywhere in Mexico. You will find them in the entrance of the malls. And even in your accommodation place 24 hours don’t worry is safe but you will see them anytime of the day. If you are a foreigner coming from another country, don’t feel weird and shocked if the guard asks you to open your bag.
16. STAYING WITH LOCAL FAMILY IN MEXICO
Staying with a local family in Mexico was an amazing experience. You can always learn new things and you will have access to the most authentic local food around. I had the extreme pleasure of staying with a local family at Oaxaca. It was a truly memorable experience and it made me feel like I always have my own family to come home to in Mexico.
17. ENJOYING THE NIGHTLIFE IN MEXICO
One of the best nightlife experiences I’ve had in South America (aside from Argentina and Colombia) was in Mexico. Parties start late in the evening and everyone just loves to drink and dance the night away. Plenty of locals go out to bars and foreigners always ask for salsa lessons.
FACTS ABOUT MEXICO FOOD AND DRINKS
Mexico is one of the best cuisine on the world! Mexican cuisine is a delicious mix of indigenous and Spanish flavors. Mexican traditional food has a reputation for being spicy, but it does have a wide variety of flavors, although many spices are utilized in the kitchen not all of them are spicy.
Tacos is the most popular food in Mexico and you will find everywhere in restaurants and as street food. Tacos are prepared with a flavorful ground beef filling, served in corn tortillas, and topped with all of the tastiest toppings. Tacos are probably a family favorite weekday dinner, and you’ll enjoy how simple they are to make!
Quesadilla is a traditional Mexican food dating back to the 16th century. Quesadillas were produced by heating a corn tortilla on a griddle, filled with cheese and other contents like meat and veggies then folding it over to serve by hand.
Chilaquiles is one of my favorite Mexican dishes, Chilaquiles is a traditional breakfast dish that consists of lightly cooked tortillas that have been chopped into smaller pieces. Chilaquiles are served with salsa and a variety of breakfast dishes like eggs, cheeses, cream, or chicken, and served with refried beans.
Pozole is a soup and flavorful bowl stew from Mexico that is traditionally served to large groups on special events and celebrations like Christmas, weddings, and birthdays.
The major component of pozole is nixtamal or also known as hominy which is made out of huge, dried maize kernels that have been pre-cooked in an alkaline solution to flatten them.
22. HUEVOS RANCHEROS
Huevos rancheros is a Mexican breakfast meal made of tortillas, eggs, beans, a variety of meats, all topped with a tomato chili sauce or salsa. Originally, huevos rancheros were a hearty breakfast fed to farm workers in rural Mexico!
Tortas are tasty Mexican sandwiches made with largely real ingredients. Tortas are a one of a kind Mexican dish because they’re prepared in bread rolls, which aren’t commonly associated with the country.
Churros are covered in cinnamon sugar and eaten plain or with chocolate, caramel, or whipped cream. Churros are created with all-purpose flour, eggs, water, and fat such as oil, margarine, or butter in the dough.
25. TEQUILA OLD FASHIONED
Tequila Old Fashioned is a drink for dedicated tequila fans that just takes a few minutes to prepare. Tequila is very well famous for being the origin of the blue agave plant, that is used to make the beverage.
Michelada is a traditional one of the Mexican drinks composed with tomato juice, beer, and spices. The michelada is a great brunch cocktail or even to serve with your preferred Mexican party meals!
Mezcal is a distilled alcohol manufactured from the same agave plant that produces tequila. Mezcal is derived from the Nahuatl words metl and ixcalli, which describe oven-cooked agave.
28. AGUAS FRESCAS
Agua fresca is a refreshing fruit drink that is widely consumed in Mexico. Agua fresca is produced simply by combining fruit with some water, sugar, and lime juice.
MORE MEXICO TRAVEL TIPS AND THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE VISITING MEXICO
29. MEXICAN TIME
Have you ever heard about Mexican time? When meeting locals in Mexico you will hear about Mexican time. It means they aren’t usually on time as many other tropical countries in the world like Costa Rica and Philippines. And maybe you will be waiting for a few minutes or who knows. Just make sure you know about this or you will learn in Mexico.
30. UBER VS TAXI IN MEXICO
Uber vs Taxis in Mexico. In my opinion Uber is a better option to use in Mexico since you will have a fixed price and you will be avoiding getting that price. There is no overcharge until your final destination. You will find Uber in most of the big cities like Mexico City and Guadalajara. Sometimes taxi drivers in Mexico overcharge and can be so challenging to close the exact price.
31. TRAVEL OFF-SEASON IN MEXICO
Travel Off-season in Mexico is the best idea. Since you will avoid the crowds and the prices will go down in the most touristic areas. I would recommend you the end of the dry season and the beginning of the rainy season great options. You can get occasional rains but it will be easier and more comfortable to travel around Mexico.
32. EASY BORDER CROSSINGS IN MEXICO
Easy border crossing in Mexico if you are planning to visit the neighboring countries: United States on the North and Belize and Guatemala on the South. It will be easy and you can do by public transportation. There are also organized shared vans going from hostels in the main touristic places in the country. It’s helpful if you can speak a few Spanish words for crossing the borders to Belize and Guatemala.
33. CENOTES IN MEXICO
Cenotes in Mexico is a must to see in Riviera Maya area and Valladolid. Cenotes is recognized for its beautiful nature and many of cenotes. You can stay swimming, snorkeling and even scuba diving in a few of them
34. Visit Mayan Ruins
Explore the ancient Mayan ruins or just bask in the glory of the Mexican sun to make your trip memorable. There are many places that you can visit around Mexico from Chichen Itza and other areas especially in the South part of the country.
35. MEXICO IS HUGE
Mexico is a huge country and you will find different areas to explore. In the North Cabos is a popular beach destination and cities like Tijuana and Monterrey are popular. Guadalajara and Mexico City are popular cities to visit and in the South Riviera Maya area is popular destination for beaches and islands apart from visiting cenotes and Mayan ruins.
36. High Taxes To Bring Your Drone
You will have to pay high taxes for bringing your drone in Mexico. At the airport, you will have to show your ticket and maybe you can avoid the taxes. If not you will have to pay 16% taxes of the drone price if they find out that you are bringing a drone to Mexico.
37. Spicy Food Means Really Spicy
Spicy food means really spicy in Mexico. When going to local places in Mexico and ordering spicy food the level is high. Mexican chilies are hot and the food can be so challenging to eat. Locals love to eat spicy food so if you do too you will enjoy Mexican cuisine.
38. VISIT PUEBLOS MAGICOS IN MEXICO
Taxco is one of the most popular Pueblos Magicos to visit in Mexico. Taxco is located southwest of Mexico City in the state of Guerrero popular for its scenic silver handiwork and other crafts. Taxco is considered the best silverwork center in the Western Hemisphere.
39. HAGGLING LOCAL STREET MARKETS IN MEXICO
You can haggle in local street markets everywhere in Mexico. You will find in small towns and cities selling food and other things local markets in places like San Cristobal de las Casas. You can haggle the price in the street markets remember always to do it with a smile and polite.
40. ADO Bus Everywhere
ADO Bus Everywhere when going for long distances. ADO Buses are so comfortable, reliable and the best way to move around Mexico since the distances are huge. Prices are affordable and you can book online or at the ADO Bus Terminal in most of the cities in Mexico.
41. Be Careful With Rental In Mexico
Be Careful with rentals in Mexico. Sometimes they will promote a $5-10 USD daily rental and you will find hidden fees in the insurance or similar policies. Make sure you double-check and you rent in a place that you can trust reading recommendations and experiences of other travelers.
42. TAP WATER IS SAFE IN MEXICO
Tap water is safe in Mexico. It’s a concern always for tourists when traveling to South America or Central America about the tap water. In this case you can’t drink tap water in Mexico. You can always buy water everywhere you will find supermarkets or small shops in Costa Rica.
43. Mexicans Dress Conservatively
Mexican dress conservatively in most of the places because they are so religious. Make sure you respect their culture and watch around how locals are dressing. Mexican people are so religious and maybe you will not get noticed in touristic areas like Tulum, Cabos and other beaches.
44. Don’t Throw Paper In The Toilet
When visiting the toilet in Mexico make sure you don’t throw paper inside the toilet. Flushing is an issue in most of the places in Mexico and you will find a basket and a sign next to you to throw your toilet paper. Playing basketball when visiting the toilet in Mexico and other countries around in South America ha!
People coming from Mexico City are called Chilangos. A long time ago it was a disrespectful way but nowdays is accepted and you will hear when traveling outside Mexico City.
46. PACIFIC OR CARIBBEAN COAST IN MEXICO
The Pacific coast of Mexico is less developed than the Caribbean Coast. You will find more luxury hotels and beautiful resorts in Riviera Maya. You will find shops everywhere, bars and restaurants. The Pacific Coast is a great place for surfing in Mexico.
The Pacific Coast is more for backpackers where you will find plenty of options for hostels, you can sleep in tent and hammocks. My favorite town in the Pacific Coast is Puerto Escondido where you can move around beautiful beaches and you will find less luxury options, bars and restaurants than in the Caribbean Coast.
47. DIGITAL NOMADS IN MEXICO
There are many Digital Nomads in Mexico. You will find plenty areas like Mexico City, Guadalajara, Merida and Oaxaca. Prices for renting an apartment can go from $300-500 USD if you are looking for budget options in these areas. Prices in Tulum are more expensive and cheap apartments can start at $500-600 USD.
Mexico has great internet and easy visa for foreigners. But prices can be a little bit higher than other places like Bali and Thailand. If you like relaxing in beaches in Mexico maybe Tulum area Oaxaca is a place for you to live a few months.
FESTIVALS IN MEXICO
48. SEMANA SANTA
The Semana Santa (Holy week) is the most anticipated festival in Mexico. You will find vibrant processions, fancy floats and carefully planned alfombras (“carpets”) adored by hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. The whole celebration is joyful, solemn and heart touching. The holy week celebration starts on April 14-19th.
49. DIA DE LOS MUERTOS
On Dia de los Muertos also known as Day of the Death. Mexicans remember their deceased loved ones. They clean and decorate the tombs of their loved ones and sometimes, offer foods and drinks to them. Locals design these giant kites intricately to win the crowd. Sometimes, the kite makers also voice their social concerns on the kites.
PLACES TO VISIT IN MEXICO
Tulum is a picture-perfect beaches and the sublime climate has made Tulum a much sought after destination by adventure seekers and luxury travelers who fill the plethora of upscale five-star resorts here.
Behind the thick view of the opulent yoga retreats and pricey boutiques, there are many other luxurious options but no so better than enjoying a private dinner at the grand Dos Ojos cenote or a cool cocktail and gourmet meal at any of the high-class resorts.
51. CHICHÉN ITZÁ
The city of Chichen Itza was by far the most populated in the Yucatan Peninsula. Chichen Itza is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World along with its high concentration of culturally significant, ancient manmade masterpieces, as well as its placement in the leading of all finalists in worldwide vote.
52. MEXICO CITY
Mexico City is a bustling city no matter which time of the year you decide to visit it. There are scores of luxury hotel in the upscale Polanco neighborhood, known for its shopping and being an international business hub.
Most of the major attractions are situated in and around the Plaza de la Constitution, the huge main square also referred to as Zocalo.
This vibrant capital of the Mexican state of Yucatan is known for its rich Mayan and colonial heritage and was named the American Capital of Culture for the second time in 2017, highlighting the abundant riches of the state.
Merida’s proximity to the US and its cultural wealth has made it an ideal destination. Merida is known for its faultless service provided by luxury travel outfitters who can book charter and helicopter flights to secure private access to all the major attractions.
Oaxaca is considered to be the gastronomic capital of Mexico. Oaxaca has managed to retain its small-town vibe even till date. The city is also known for its vibrant art scene, indigenous people and rich Mexican culture.
While tourists descend here for the two most notable occasions, the Guelaguetza and Day of the Dead, Oaxaca is colorful and vibrant all the year round.
Guadalajara is a Mexican metropolis in the western part of the country. Guadalajara is famous for both tequila and mariachi music, which together originated in Jalisco. With large tree-lined boulevards, lush plazas, Spanish-influenced buildings, and bustling walkways, the city emanates a distinctly European ambiance.
Guanajuato is located in the central part of the country. Guanajuato is called as the “Land of Legends” because of its people’s fascination in supernatural stories.
57. SAN MIGUEL DE ALLENDE
San Miguel de Allende is the capital of the municipality of San Miguel de Allende, which is found in Guanajuato’s far eastern region. San Miguel de Allende does not have any beaches or blue waters, yet it is famous for its well-preserved Colonial and Spanish structures. Numerous religious and civic structures were constructed in the Mexican Baroque style.
58. SAN CRISTOBAL DE LAS CASAS
San Cristóbal de las Casas is a highland town in the state of Chiapas within Southern Mexico. San Cristobal de las Casas is one of the most famous places in Mexico and is on almost every traveler’s itinerary, therefore the city’s most frequented historical area can be a bit busy.
59. PINK LAKES OF LAS COLORADAS
Las Coloradas, which translates to “blush red,” gets its distinctive color from red-colored algae, plankton, and brine shrimp that live in salty water, giving it a magenta-pink hue.
The pink lake is located near Las Coloradas, a little fishing community on Mexico’s eastern coast with a population of roughly 1,000 people.
60. COPPER CANYON
Copper Canyon is actually a collection of canyons that drain the Sierra Tarahumara’s western flank. Its region encompasses 25,000 square miles, or over a third of the state of Chihuahua, Mexico’s largest. Copper Canyon is named after the copper-green color of the canyon walls and it is a popular hiking destination.
Hope you liked our Mexico Travel Tips blog post and you are ready for visiting Mexico an amazing country with many things to offer. Are we missing more things to know before visiting Mexico? Let us know in the comments below.
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