Mexico is a fascinating experience characterised by deep-rooted traditions, bustling colonial cities, sleepy villages and the striking archaeological sites of the Maya and the Aztecs. A leisurely wander around the streets of Oaxaca and Mérida is an absolute delight – listening to live music and soaking up the ambience.
The hard-working Mexicans are congenial and welcoming people. Out of a total population of 105 million, nearly 30 percent are indigenous whilst 60 percent are mestizos (fusion of indigenous and European blood). They are great fans of pyrotechnics and incorporate fireworks whenever possible into the numerous celebrations.
Mexicans have the greatest respect towards death. They strongly believe in afterlife and they expect to meet their loved ones during the Day of the Dead celebrations. Altars in homes are adorned with goods that were enjoyed by departed familymembers such as cigars, tequila and chocolate. Miniature skeletons and papier mâché life-sized devils and skulls are also very much in evidence.
Holidays In Mexico
A variety of cuisine and cooking methods can be found throughout Mexico. The country is renowned for its fresh seafood such as ceviche (white fish marinated in lime juice), conch, octopus and shrimp. Common meat dishes are shredded beef and barbecued goat.
Mexico’s earliest and most fascinating civilizations were that of the Maya; its people occupied the Yucatan peninsula, as well as Chiapas and other parts of Central America. There are three main centres of Maya civilization in Mexico; Palenque, Chichén Itzá and Uxmal. The pyramids here rival those found in Egypt.
Mexico does offer some interesting flora and fauna, which are found in the more remote corners of the country. The Yucatán peninsula is a breeding ground for sea turtles and the coral reef boasts an impressive marine life. Celestún also on the Yucatán peninsula, is a prime spot for observing flamingos.
The majority of tourism comes from North America and is focused on four developed and commercial coastal resorts. The discerning European traveller interested in history, culture and wildlife can thus enjoy other parts of the country in relative peace.
There are direct flights with British Airways and AeroMexico from London Heathrow to Mexico City. British Airways and Virgin Atlantic also fly from London Gatwick to Cancun. Iberia operate from London Heathrow to Mexico City and Cancun via Madrid. Other options from London Heathrow include Air France (via Paris) to both Mexico City and Cancun; and KLM (via Amsterdam) to Mexico City. US carriers cover Mexican destinations extensively, notably United Airlines via Houston. Other airlines include American Airlines and Delta. Any flights via the US require an ESTA application. Regional departures include Edinburgh, Manchester and Birmingham.
Mexico boasts a variety of destinations and attractions and is therefore ideal for a 15 to 20 day trip. It can also be easily combined with the archaeological sites, lakes and colonial towns of Guatemala.
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