14 Places to Visit in Mexico to Experience Its Culture and Beauty

14 Beautiful Places in Mexico for an Unforgettable Tour

From food and culture to gorgeous landscapes, Mexico might just have it all!

Some of the best places to visit in Mexico have many fascinating stories connected to them. As the tenth largest country in the world in terms of landmass, its landscapes are undeniably rich. Some could even say that its beaches and mountains have character and possess jaw-dropping beauty.

Equally fascinating are the cultures that made their mark in Mexico. The country was a huge part of Mesoamerica, with its heritage still evident throughout the country today. And since it was also a Spanish colony, some Mexico destinations exhibit a few traits of European culture. 

The natural beauty and rich history make Mexico a fascinating place to explore. Ready to begin that journey to this enchanting place? ¡Vamos!

Also read: 22 Countries With Digital Nomad Visas for Long-Term Workcations

Best Mexico destinations in the Yucatán Peninsula

1. Playa Delfines – Riviera Maya

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One of the best places to visit in Cancun is Riviera Maya. This vast stretch of coastline hosts some of the best vacation spots in Mexico, especially for people looking for a tropical getaway. One standout beach among locals and tourists alike is Playa Delfines

The colours alone will make anyone’s jaw drop! The combination of fine white sand and turquoise waters seems like it came out of a painting. But what makes Playa Delfines one of the best places to visit in Mexico is the unbridled view of the Caribbean Sea

2. Tulum Mayan Ruins – Tulum

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Remember that marriage of natural beauty and rich history we mentioned earlier? The scenic town of Tulum has to be Mexico’s best example of this impressive intersection of elements. As a result, the town became a popular thriving bohemian hub. 

The Tulum Mayan Ruins have to be its strongest attraction. Seeing the ancient ruins overlooking a beautiful beach is enough to send anyone into transcendental bliss. We’ll never know what it looked like during its heyday, but this remnant of the past looks like it hasn’t aged at all! 

Also read: 16 Airbnb Homes & Vacation Rentals in Tulum With Private Pools & Jungle Views

3. Jungle Art Walk – Tulum

Looking for what to do in Tulum? Begin a journey in art!

On the Jungle Art Walk, artists let their imaginations run wild in this humble space. Almost every colour seen on this street serves an expressive purpose and some of these works can be quite inspiring. Visit this creative place to see some of the boldest strokes on murals and canvas from impressive artists!

The Jungle Art Walk is part of a bigger art community in Tulum. Art collectors will find this space a haven as well. There is a huge concentration of galleries and art stores seen on every corner in this part of Tulum. From paintings to fashion, the local art scene has everything to kickstart one’s interest in creative endeavours.

4. Cenote Ik-Kil

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Cenote Ik-kil has that otherworldly charm, even before it became one of the most famous places to visit in Mexico. Ancient Mayan civilisations believed that in this surreal cenote (or natural swimming hole) dwelled the power of Kulkulkan, the serpent god. Maybe it’s why the mystic city of Chichen Itza was built close to it.

If the cenote does possess a mystic air to it, it certainly fits the look because its colours are magical! Ik-Kil Cenote looks like it wants to invite anyone to slip into relaxation. From its cool air going through its vegetation to its fresh crystalline waters, a plunge into Ik-Kil will feel like heaven on earth.

Places to visit in Mexico City and its nearby areas

5. The Pyramids of the Sun and the Moon – Teotihuacan

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No one has ever really been to Mexico City without visiting the archaeological site Teotihuacan. After all, it’s just an hour away from the capital. Since Teotihuacan is one of the world’s most famous archaeological sites, it is a definite addition to the best places to visit near Mexico City.

Easily the most eye-catching monuments in Teotihuacan are the Pyramids of the Sun and the Moon. This set of pyramids served as altars of sacrifice for Aztec gods during the height of their civilisation. Today, these massive structures attract as many as three million tourists annually!

Also read: 12 Coolest Pyramids in the World (That Aren’t in Egypt!)

6. Arena Mexico – Mexico City

Professional wrestling (or sports entertainment, in some circles) isn’t for everyone, but for Mexicans, it is an intangible cultural heritage. Traditionally known as lucha libre, Mexican professional wrestling is much more distinct from similar products like WWE. Wrestlers, or luchadors, tend to incorporate high-flying moves rather than traditional holds and throws. Along with their colourful masks, lucha libre is a highly entertaining visual spectacle that Mexico is truly proud of.

Fortunately, the supposed “Cathedral of Lucha Libre” isn’t far off Mexico City. Wrestling enthusiasts will be glad to know that Arena Mexico in the Cuauhtémoc borough holds regular lucha libre matches every week. It is one of the most exciting places to visit in Mexico City and it might just convince anyone that pro wrestling is heaps of fun!

7. Xochimilco chinampas – Mexico City

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Xochimilco borough’s claim to fame among the best places to visit in Mexico is its preservation of the chinampas. These are water canals utilised by ancient Aztec tribes to cultivate their floating gardens. 

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Today, the colourful trajineras (traditional boats) used to row along the chinampas aren’t just a tourist attraction. Some of the community’s crops come from this garden, doubling as an ingenious source of food!

Best places to unwind in Cabo San Lucas

8. El Arco – Finisterra

El Arco can be a very surreal sight to behold. Who would have thought that sea waves could sculpt something this precise? Observing this iconic rock formation up close is one of the best things to do in Cabo San Lucas

The formation lies south of the Baja Peninsula, in a promontory otherwise known as Finisterra. El Arco’s vicinity also holds a special distinction among seafarers, since it is this point where the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific Ocean meet.

Also read: 12 Best Airbnbs in Cabo San Lucas for Your Next Mexican Holiday

Mexico destinations when visiting Chiapas

9. Temple of Inscriptions – Palenque

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Yet another archaeological site in Mexico, Palenque was a bountiful city during the early Maya civilisation. The surrounding jungle encroached the city into obscurity but was eventually excavated and discovered between the late 18th and early 19th centuries. One of the ancient ruins discovered deep inside it is the Temple of Inscriptions

This temple is actually a tomb in honour of the Mayan city’s most famous leader, Pakal. The intricate architecture applied to the temple can be astonishing to observe. Fitting to its name, numerous detailed inscriptions about Mayan culture adorned Pakal’s sarcophagus. 

Best places in Oaxaca worth exploring

10. Hierve el Agua – San Lorenzo Albarradas

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Ever seen petrified waterfalls? Even hearing those two words together sounds strange, right? To help your imagination process what petrified waterfalls would look like, the best example has to be Hierve el Agua

These petrified waterfalls are actually mineral-rich springs which formed over time. Mineral deposits have also likely contributed to the formation. A few land-formed basins around the area make for great natural infinity pools, perfect to enjoy a nice spring bath!

Also read: 15 Strange Destinations Around the World That Don’t Seem Real

11. Lagunas de Chacahua

One of the best Mexico destinations for some peace and quiet is Lagunas de Chacahua. Located on the outskirts of the Oaxaca City, this serene environment is a marvel in biodiversity. It is one long chain of mangrove forests and lagoons that meet the Pacific Ocean, essentially a point where these different bodies of water meet. This makes the entire nature park a great destination to switch between hiking and swimming in a flash.

12. El Tule – Santa María del Tule

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El Tule is a Montezuma cypress tree, which also happens to hold a lot of history. Almost 2,000 years worth of it, in fact! The ancient natural monument in Santa María del Tule attracts droves of tourists to this humble town every year. 

Standing at over 131 feet and with a circumference of 138 feet, it would be impossible not to adore it! El Tule also happens to have lush and dense foliage atop it, further exhibiting its wizened charm.

13. Yagul Zona Arqueológica – Tlacolula

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As anyone can tell, Mexico is thriving with archaeological sites from ancient Mesoamerican cultures. The Zapotec tribes constructed the city over Yagul Zona Arqueológica, which was the centre of their civilisation from long ago. Among the structures that the Zapotec utilised here were ceremonial centres, a central civic palace, and perhaps the strangest of them all, a ball court. The site also has a museum should any history buffs want to immerse themselves in the ancient civilisation.

14. Mercado de Benito Juárez – Xochimilco, Oaxaca City

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Not to be confused with the borough in Mexico City, Xochimilco District in Oaxaca is the city’s cultural hub. Murals fill its streets which become stages for many cultural events in the city like La Fiesta de Maxima, the annual Cinco de Mayo, and of course, Dia de la Muertos. It is also in this district where many different peddlers set up shop in Mercado de Benito Juarez.

This bustling market exhibits well-preserved colonial architecture in the middle of the cultural hub. Some of the best offerings from Oaxcan culture come from this place. From colourful crafts to exciting cuisine, the vibrance of Mercado de Benito Juarez is enough for it to be one of the best places to visit in Mexico. So, don’t leave without a souvenir or two!

Also read: 50 Essential Spanish Phrases for Your Next Vacation

There are just so many places to visit in Mexico that it would take months to explore them all. And even then, there may just be even more places in the country which are left hiding! Mexico is vast, but there is just so much charm in this country that visits here are bound to be unforgettable.

So, which of these top Mexico destinations are you visiting first? We’d leave to hear your thoughts on our Facebook page!

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About Author

Aldous Vince Cabildo
Aldous Vince Cabildo

Ever since growing up, Aldous learned how to look at things from an historical perspective. So whenever the opportunity to travel arises, he makes sure to go to places that contain local stories and memories. From there, he takes in the lessons from the past and picks out what to learn, or should it interest him, what to unlearn. At any chance he gets, he also makes sure to try out local cuisine. When not charting his next destination, Aldous likes to explore worlds found in video games, hip-hop, film, and professional wrestling. He is a proud resident of Tondo.