Mexico and Central America

Travel Guide
Playa La Audiencia which includes a beach, tropical scenes and landscape views

Wedged between two polar opposite continents, this subcontinent offers the best of both worlds: rural villages, modern cities, beach resorts and thrilling attractions.

Visit Mexico and the Central American countries for fabulous beaches and much more. Find history, culture, ancient ruins and delicious food.

Mexico’s beaches are justifiably famous. On the western Pacific Ocean coastline, see cliff divers in Acapulco, stay in a private bungalow with a pool in Puerto Vallarta and watch marine wildlife in Cabo San Lucas. Cozumel and Cancun on the eastern Yucatan peninsula on the Gulf of Mexico offer lovely sand beaches with access to reef diving and nearby Mayan ruins.

Moving south, appreciate impressive art and architecture in Mexico City. See the folk ballet and visit museums ranging from anthropological to artistic, including the famed Museo Frida Kahlo. Eat spicy meals on a food tour and purchase hand-crafted silver jewelry. Climb the 2,000-year-old pyramids of the pre-Columbian site, Teotihuacan.

Continuing south from Mexico, visit Guatemala. Here, find places across the nation where you can wake to watch the sun rise over Mayan temples and pyramids. See numerous volcanoes across the country and swim in blue-green limestone pools in the isolated area of Semuc Champey.

Snorkel, learn to dive or add to your scuba certifications through dive programs on Roatan and Utila off the coast of Honduras.

Although Costa Rica is relatively small, the country has 20 national parks. Join an ecotourism tour to observe wildlife and natural vegetation. Watch nesting sea turtles, fish for tarpon and venture into the rainforest.

Nicaragua is a narrow country with beaches on both east and west coasts. Inland, see volcanoes, islets and old Spanish cathedrals. Stay in Granada to kayak on Lago Nicaraugua and visit the Mombacho Volcano.

In Panama, learn about the long and difficult path to the construction of the 48-mile (77-kilometer) Panama Canal. Watch huge ships move through the locks of the 100-year-old structure that enables a marine “shortcut” between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

Enjoy the variety of cuisines across the countries. Sample fresh seafood, stuffed empanadas, peppery sauces and desserts made from sweetened milk.

If you’re staying in any Central American country for a lengthy period, take an immersion language program in Spanish at the beginning of your travels. Since Spanish is the primary language for the entire region, you will be able to speak with friendly local residents as you cross borders between countries.

Popular cities in Mexico and Central America

Palacio de Bellas Artes showing heritage architecture, night scenes and a park
Mexico City
Known for Historical, Museums and Cathedrals
This cultural metropolis offers dramatic murals, ancient ruins and classical architecture. 

Reasons to visit

  • Zocalo
  • Alameda Central
  • Palacio de Bellas Artes
Museo Nacional de Antropologia featuring interior views and art
Mexico City
Known for Historical, Museums and Cathedrals
Find out what makes Mexico’s capital city pulse by exploring its lively neighborhoods, expansive parks, museums and ancient ruins.

Reasons to visit

  • Zocalo
  • Alameda Central
  • Palacio de Bellas Artes
Palacio de Gobierno showing an administrative buidling, a square or plaza and a city
Guadalajara
Known for Shopping, Cathedrals and Museums
Intriguing architecture, mariachi music and mouthwatering food will have you falling in love with one of Mexico’s largest cities.

Reasons to visit

  • Guadalajara Cathedral
  • Plaza de Armas
  • Hospicio Cabanas
Zocalo Square which includes night scenes
Puebla
Known for Historical, Cathedrals and Churches
One of the oldest cities in Mexico fascinates visitors with its Spanish colonial buildings, creative cuisines and artistic output.

Reasons to visit

  • Puebla Cathedral
  • Zocalo Square
  • Rosario Chapel
Paseo de Montejo showing a monument and night scenes
Mérida
Known for Historical, Ruins and Museums
Mérida awaits: its ruins, museums, entertainment, and more!

Reasons to visit

  • Casa Montes Molina Museum
  • Anthropology and History Museum
  • Paseo de Montejo
Cancun which includes a sandy beach, landscape views and general coastal views
Cancun
Known for Dining, Beach view and Sea
Explore ancient Mayan pyramids, the world's second-longest coral reef, endless beaches and even longer nights in this party-friendly city on the Yucatan peninsula.

Reasons to visit

  • Cancun Interactive Aquarium