Mexico is the most popular tropical destination for north Americans. It’s close enough that flights are reasonable and far enough to have a culture that is distinctly different from what Europeans and North Americans see day-to-day. It has amazing beaches all thanks to its long coastlines that goes on to almost 7,000 miles and colonial cities that is home to great street food and fine cuisine.

Quick rundown

  • Best known for: Guacamole and Tacos
  • Currency: Peso (short: MXN)
  • Population: 128,052,847
  • Size: around the size of Greenland
  • Electricity voltage: 120V – 60Hz
  • Used GSM frequencies: 1900
  • Phone prefix: +52
  • Internet Top level domain: .mx
  • Language: Spanish
  • Timezone: GMT-6

Visa requirements

Depending on your country of origin, you may not need a visa if you decide to only stay within 180 days. Check the government site to see if you’ll need to get a visitor visa. Aside from a visa, there are certain documents that the border authorities look for:

  • Passport with more than 6 months of validity
  • Multiple migratory Form that you usually get from airlines
  • Documents that shows where you are staying and the purpose of your tripmexi

Best time to visit

Mexico’s vast landscape includes deserts, savannas, and tropical rainforests and all of them are found at different altitudes so plan for temperature changes depending on where you are staying in Mexico.

Tierra Cliente is where most coastal and desert regions are found. Hot and humid best describes this area, and includes cities like Todos Santos, Pescadero, La Paz, and San Jose del Cabo, and Valle de Guadalupe in the Baja California Peninsula

Tierra Templada literally translates to the temperate land, and it’s where the largest cities are found like Mexico City, Guadalajara, and Monterrey.

Tierra Fria is at higher altitudes well known for mountains and volcanoes, and only a handful of towns are in this region such as San Juan Chamula and Zinacatan in the southern state of Chiapas and the Copper Canyon in the state of Chihuahua

For the most part, the dry seasons are months when it’s hot and humid and without rain. It starts in December and ends around April. In those months, December to February are the coolest. The rest of the year is the rainy season, with hurricanes being very common from June to November.

Safety Rating

Things to Know

  • A bit of Spanish goes a long way. When going to the bathroom, know that M is for mujeres or women and H is for Hombres
  • Have physical copies of your documents and your itinerary confirmation. They asked for these as you enter the country
  • Boil your water
  • Negotiate when you can
  • Look out for flags on the beach. Seeing a red flag means that it’s not safe for swimming, and a purple flag means that jelly fish may be in the water. Other colors are typically fine

What to Pack

If I were to add a couple of items specific to my trip to Peru, it would be

  • Rain jacket or umbrella
  • Fleece jacket
  • Dry fit shirt or sleeveless top when it gets hot
  • Sunglasses
  • Cap

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