Places to Visit in Mexico for Your Beautiful Trip to the Sun

Places to visit in Mexico. Dig into this guide to help you plan your own incredible trip to this North American paradise.

Mexico is extremely popular, and it always makes the top countries to consider for a trip.

The country’s abundant history, varied landscapes, lively culture, and hospitable warmth all make it a lovely destination.

In this guide, I will share specific types of places, including for solo travelers, couples, families, and more.

So, if you’re planning a trip to Mexico, get your notes ready because I have a ton of tips and ideas to share.

Welcome to Mexico

Welcome to Mexico

Mexico is home to a robust tourism sector, with millions of visitors annually. I’ve met travelers from many countries.

The top destinations include Cancun, nearby Playa del Carmen, and the nation’s capital, Mexico City.

Major airports Mexico City’s (MEX), Cancun’s (CUN), and Guadalajara’s (GDL). You will find direct flights to these.

Before you book your trip, though, check into the visa situation. Fortunately, the country has a quick turnaround of 2 days.

Meanwhile, many nationalities, including citizens of the United States and Canada, don’t require visas for short visits.

Spanish is the official language, the Mexican peso is the currency (about 20 to 1 U.S. dollar), and the time zone varies but is generally Central Standard Time (CST).

At the airports, you will find tons of ATMs, taxicabs, and rideshare options, and getting to the city centers is easy.

With that out of the way, let’s get into some of the places to visit in Mexico!

Mexico for First Timers

Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, and Mexico City are great for first-timers.

For first-time visitors to Mexico, Cancun is perfect. This is the ultimate beach town, blending sun, sea, and culture.

Cancun has gorgeous beaches, lively nightlife, and proximity to ancient Mayan ruins like Chichen Itza.

Puerto Vallarta on the Pacific Coast is another excellent choice. You get pretty beaches, a charming old town, and a diverse food scene.

Of course, Mexico City is definitely one of the best places to visit in Mexico for the first time.

With its Aztec history, colonial culture, and world-class gastronomy, you won’t be bored in this megacity.

So, yeah, these destinations give you diverse experiences that work for different interests and preferences.

Nicest Parts of Mexico

The nicest places to visit in Mexico include Puerto Vallarta, Merida, and San Miguel de Allende.

Think of lovely towns that have a lot of culture, including delicious food.

In my mind, in a country like Mexico, where there are high crimes in some areas, the “nicest” parts are about destinations that are safe to visit.

I’m thinking about local crime rates, tourism infrastructure, and government efforts.

Generally speaking, tourist-friendly cities like Puerto Vallarta, Merida, and San Miguel de Allende are great choices.

These cities have relatively low crime rates and are popular among expatriates and retirees.

Plus, they all give you different vibes.

Visit Puerto Vallarta for the coastal lifestyle, Merida for the unique Mayan culture, and San Miguel de Allende for its highlands bohemian ambiance.

So, yeah, choose one or go to all three!

Unique Places in Mexico

Unique Places in Mexico
Unique places to visit in Mexico include Hierve el Agua, Las Coloradas, Real de Catorce, and Caribbean islands.

Mexico has a ton of unique destinations that attract various interests and preferences.

One standout is Hierve el Agua, which is a petrified waterfall in Oaxaca. These are gorgeous mineral formations and natural infinity pools.

Then you have the colorful town of Real de Catorce. It’s in the Sierra Madre Mountains, and it has a mystical atmosphere.

After that, check out the surreal Las Coloradas in the Yucatan Peninsula. This is pink-hued salt flats!

Finally, the country is home to some remote islands you definitely don’t want to miss.

Isla Holbox and Isla Mujeres (both in the Mayan Riviera) have incredibly pristine beaches.

Plus, these islands give you opportunities for wildlife encounters.

So, yeah, definitely unique places to add to your list.

Beautiful Spots in Mexico

Beautiful places to visit in Mexico include Tulum, the Copper Canyon, Guanajuato, and the Lagoon of Seven Colors.

Mexico is home to a ton of gorgeous destinations. This is truly a country that has a mesmerizing natural beauty.

Start at the paradisiacal beaches of Tulum. This area has ancient Mayan ruins overlooking crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean Sea.

The Copper Canyon, which is a network of deep gorges in Chihuahua, is another place. These truly mesmerize with rugged landscapes and scenic train rides.

Of course, you don’t want to miss the colonial city of Guanajuato. It dazzles with colorful buildings, winding streets, and underground tunnels.

Meanwhile, head to the border with Belize to visit Bacalar. You won’t want to miss the town’s lake, the Lagoon of Seven Colors.

Finally, all of Mexico is really beautiful, so it’s always hard to “choose” a few. But, yeah, you will love it here.

Mexico for Solo Female Travel

Places to visit in Mexico for solo female travelers are diverse, including Merida, Veracruz, and more.

Consider destinations like Mexico City, Playa del Carmen, Puerto Vallarta, Merida, and Veracruz for your solo travel.

Mexico City is full of culture, cuisine, and nightlife. This city is perfect for a solo urban experience.

On the other hand, Playa del Carmen has a coastal village vibe. Oh, and a ton of selfie opportunities.

Then, there is Puerto Vallarta, which is a combination of both. It has a major city attached to it, but the beach area is super chill.

Meanwhile, Merida is a charming and super-safe destination. It has colonial architecture, lively markets, and cultural events.

Finally, you will absolutely love Veracruz. This is a cool town with a historic port, a colorful music scene, and flavorful cuisine.

Basically, you could choose one or more or all of them!

Mexico for Young Adults

Places to visit in Mexico for young adults include Mexico City, Cancun, and Puerto Vallarta.

Young adults flock to Mexico’s lively destinations for their fun atmosphere and diverse attractions.

Mexico City’s eclectic neighborhoods, trendy bars, and cultural sites give you endless opportunities.

You will get to wake up in youthful neighborhoods like La Condesa, enjoy endless tacos across Centro, and party in Roma Norte.

On the other hand, Cancun is about wild nights and beach afternoons. Parties in this town break the dawn.

You will lounge at pristine beaches, go on thrilling water sports, and rub elbows with a ton of tourists your age.

Of course, Puerto Vallarta’s lively Malecon, beach parties, and outdoor adventures speak to the young travelers.

If you’re seeking excitement and memorable experiences in Mexico, this town has it all.

So, yeah, enjoy your youthful time in Mexico, but be careful, too!

Romantic Mexico

Romantic Mexico
Romantic places to visit in Mexico include Oaxaca, San Miguel de Allende, and Puerto Vallarta.

Mexico has a lot of romantic getaways perfect for couples seeking unforgettable experiences, including Oaxaca.

Oaxaca has artisan markets, historic architecture, and delicious food for couples to explore together.

This is really the ideal romantic city, where you can stroll hand-in-hand and create memories.

Likewise, the highlands town of San Miguel de Allende is super romantic.

It has colonial charm, cobblestone streets, and intimate cafes.

Finally, Puerto Vallarta’s gorgeous sunsets create a romantic atmosphere.

Plus, this city has beachfront dining, as well as a charming old town.

As you can see, Mexico isn’t short on romantic spots.

Family-Friendly Mexico

Family-friendly places to visit in Mexico include the Riviera Maya, Los Cabos, and Mexico City.

Families tend to find endless fun and memorable experiences in Mexico’s family-friendly destinations.

Start with the Riviera Maya. This area has theme parks like Xcaret and Xel-Ha, as well as kid-friendly beaches and eco-tours.

The Carribean vibe will make the kids very happy and give the parents the much-needed romantic ambiance.

Of course, Los Cabos has whale watching, snorkeling, and camel rides in scenic landscapes.

Your family will make amazing memories in this desert-influenced area.

Finally, Mexico City engages all ages. The city’s Chapultepec Park, museums, and cultural shows will work for the whole family.

Plus, this is a great town to go shopping in and let the kids pick up culturally relevant stuff.

So, yeah, Mexico has a ton of family things to do!

LGBT-Friendly Mexico

LGBT-friendly places to visit in Mexico include Puerto Vallarta, Mexico City, and Cancun.

LGBT travelers find welcoming and lively destinations across Mexico. This is a country that recognizes same-sex marriages.

Puerto Vallarta’s Zona Romantica area has beach clubs, nightlife, and LGBT-friendly resorts.

If you come during Pride, you will really enjoy this city, especially since it has a sizable expat gay community.

Then, of course, there is Mexico City’s Zona Rosa. This neighborhood has a thriving LGBT scene with bars, clubs, and events.

You will love Zona Rosa if you want to experience local LGBT life, although you really need to speak Spanish.

Finally, Cancun’s LGBT-friendly resorts and beach parties create a lively atmosphere for travelers.

This is strictly a tourist area, unlike Puerto Vallarta’s expat experience or Mexico City’s local life.

But, yes, Mexico is definitely a great place to visit for the members of the LGBT community.

Places to Avoid in Mexico

Avoid Acapulco, Coatzacoalcos, Ciudad Obregón, and Culiacán to minimize safety issues.

Not all of Mexico is created equal, and some destinations have high crime rates, violence, and cartel activity.

Acapulco was once a glamorous resort town but has seen a rise in crime and violence.

This is really sad because it has that “Rio” vibe, with hills, beaches, and incredible weather.

Likewise, Coatzacoalcos is another city to avoid. It faces challenges with crime and drug-related violence.

Similarly, Uruapan struggles with organized crime activities and occasional violence.

Meanwhile, Ciudad Obregón has experienced an increase in crime, including cartel activity and violence.

Finally, Culiacán, although lively and culturally rich, has high crime rates and cartel presence.

Final Thoughts

Places to visit in Mexico are truly plenty. Selecting a destination isn’t difficult here due to its many benefits.

Mexico has an overall beauty, and it gives you amazing options across the country for travelers to explore.

That said, though, this is also a country with some of the most dangerous locales in the world.

In other words, you will need to plan a real trip to Mexico. It just so happens that I gave you plenty of ideas here.

Enjoy Mexico!

AJ Paris is a travel photographer based in New York. He is the editor of Caravanzers.

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