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Going to Mexico... Looking for some good recommendations...

Travel Forums North America Going to Mexico... Looking for some good recommendations...

1. Posted by laura_mroz (Budding Member 6 posts) 5y

Hey there,

I'm planning a 10+ day trip to Mexico with my girlfriend at the end of February/early March. It will be a break from full-time school, though I'd like to avoid the typical Mexico "vacation" and stick to visiting Mexico as a traveler with a genuine curiosity about the people, landscape, history (architecture), and culture (food, art/music, religion, etc.). It's a relatively short time for traveling Mexico, but I'd like to get the most authentic taste as possible.

I'm looking for some recommendations about a general region or town to stay in, where to visit and explore, where to stay, and sites to visit (whether it's a ruin site, small village, place for good food, music).

I'm interested in staying in a cabana that is ideally on the ocean with access to a nice beach and place to swim. Also it would be great to stay in a place with a self-service kitchen for making personal meals. However, it would be best to stay in an area where there is true exposure to Mexico - the people and it's culture - to visit local restaurants, see live music shows and dance, and eat Mexican food. Day trips where we can hop on a bus and visit ruin sites, go hiking, see waterfalls, mountains, etc. would also be wonderful.

Where to fly in, names of small eco-resort/cabana properties, names of towns/villages, etc...

So I'm trying to put this all into context and figure out a region where doing all of this would be possible.

Your help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks and happy travels,
Laura

2. Posted by Cyberia (Travel Guru 1827 posts) 5y

Mexico has always had a bit of violence but it is becoming more widespread recently with 15 headless bodies found just outside Acapulco a few days ago (drugs, which is an increasingly dangerous problem). Some years ago on a night coach, we were stopped 12 times within 2 miles by armed soldiers and searched (as in a quick look around). There is potential violence in a number of areas like Mexico City, Oaxaca, etc. I would hope a tourist area like Cancun would be safe because of the number of tourists there but would not guarantee it.

If you do go, make sure you have insurance.

3. Posted by laura_mroz (Budding Member 6 posts) 5y

Quoting Cyberia

Mexico has always had a bit of violence but it is becoming more widespread recently with 15 headless bodies found just outside Acapulco a few days ago (drugs, which is an increasingly dangerous problem). Some years ago on a night coach, we were stopped 12 times within 2 miles by armed soldiers and searched (as in a quick look around). There is potential violence in a number of areas like Mexico City, Oaxaca, etc. I would hope a tourist area like Cancun would be safe because of the number of tourists there but would not guarantee it.

If you do go, make sure you have insurance.

Thanks for the info, but these are not the recommendations that I'm looking for.

4. Posted by Calcruzer (Moderator 1989 posts) 5y

I think that places like Guanajuato, or San Luis Potosi would fit your bill if you decide on inland places where you could enjoy yourself by the hotel/resort pool, while I would suggest one of three places if you really want a true beach: (1) west of Merida on the coast--where there are lots of Mayan ruins all over the place, (2) north of Cancun on the Isla Mujeres (Island of Women) where there are resorts on the west end and you can connect to the mainland easily via a 15 minute ferry ride--or (3) in Cancun proper--but staying at a north-facing beach like the Riu Caribe or the Presidente or my favorite, the Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach.

First, things to know about Guanajuato or San Luis Potosi;--both are towns that are large enough to have nightlife, but they are typically Mexican and off the normal tourist routes. Both have beautiful central squares, extremely beautiful painted houses--and artistic communities with interesting local items for sale.

As far as Merida, it's an old town wth a real mexican favor and unspoiled. Stay west of here on the beach and you'll feel like you are miles from Cancun itself. If you stay in one of the Cancun spots, you will find Chichen Itza (best ruins in the Americas, along with Machu Picchu in Peru) about 2 hours west, and Tulum about 1 hour south. P.S. Chichen Itza is also about 2 hours drive east of Merida--but about 3 hours east of the beaches in this area.

I guess if I were you, I might go to the area west of Merida or else Isla Mujeres, where I would take time to go into the old downtown area of Cancun for meals and celebrations. I know that my friend, who is a high-end swimwear photographer, goes about 2 hours south of Cancun to a resort where he takes all his top models to do his shots--but then they never leave the resort.

Enjoy

[ Edit: Edited on 15-Jan-2011, at 20:24 by Calcruzer ]

5. Posted by Calcruzer (Moderator 1989 posts) 5y

I've been talking to some friends about your request--and they've said that Zihuantanejo should also be considered for a good beach resort location with good ruins nearby--and the "real" Mexico all around.

So consider this option also--especially if you are interested in somewhere on Mexico's western coast.