Nature has carved some amazing formations at Los Cabos, and El Arco is perhaps the most famous.
A signature icon of Los Cabos, the limestone arch carved by time, tide and wind runs down to the water’s edge and into the sea. From a distance the formation looks for all the world like a dragon, and up close the arch frames sky, sea and sand for picture-perfect photos.
Take a cruise by day or sunset for views of El Arco from the water, and look out for sea lions basking on the shore.
Kept hidden from the public until 2007 and strictly adhering to its sustainable tourism model, the evocatively named Rio Secreto, or “Secret River,” is deserved of its reputation as the best kept secret of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. A dramatic series of caves carved out by the flow of an ancient underground river, the Rio Secreto is most famous for its large half-sunken cavern, one of few in the world that is accessible to non-professional divers.
Venturing underground, visitors can explore the eerie passageways that once formed part of the mysterious, yet much talked about Mayan underworld; swim in the fabled underground river; and admire the unique natural caves, dripping with stalactites, stalagmites and strikingly colored mineral formations.
Playa del Amor - or Lover's Beach - is a true hidden gem, nestled amongst the craggy rocks of Land’s End. Reached only by boat, this perfect crescent of sand is surrounded by rocky outcrops, including views of El Arco.
The secluded location is a romantic destination for a day by the sea, the lovely stretch of sand extending across the Land’s End peninsula from the Sea of Cortes to the Pacific Ocean. The water here is dangerous, so take care if you go for a swim or snorkel, and only enter the water on the Sea of Cortes side of the beach.
Beautiful Banderas Bay - or Bahia de Banderas - is just one of the reasons why Puerto Vallarta is such a highly sought-after beach resort destination.
The Pacific Ocean bay is Mexico’s largest, lapping the two Mexican states of Jalisco and Nayarit. Its long beautiful coastline runs for 42 miles (68 km), 25 (40) of them in Puerto Vallarta.
Banderas Bay is the number-one location for sports and eco adventures on the water, from parasailing and surfing to yachting from the port’s ritzy marina.
Whale-watching in these waters is also popular, especially December to April when the whales come here to calve.
Get out on the water of Banderas Bay in a sea-kayak, or cruise to one of the many islands dotting the bay.
The seat of Mexico's federal government since the age of the Aztecs (at least), the National Palace - or Palacio Nacional - is a working building, and many offices are off limits to visitors. You can, however, pass through the enormous baroque facade dominating the eastern side of the Zócalo and enjoy some of its ample interior.
Though the arcaded courtyards and fountains are fine examples of Spanish colonial architecture, you're here to see artist Diego Rivera's triptych of murals, "Epic of the Mexican People." From the creation of humankind by Quetzalcóatl, the Feathered Serpent god, and subsequent rise of the Aztecs, Rivera plunges you into the horrors of the Spanish Conquest - rape, murder, slavery, and finally, mercy to the defeated survivors. In the final piece, Mexico's resistance to invasions by France, the United States, and corporate robber barons including Vanderbilt, Rockefeller and J.P. Morgan, are depicted.
Villa Coyoacan is 29 blocks of one of Mexico City’s most charming districts. Also one of the area’s oldest districts, the area is filled with cobblestone streets, counterculture museums, and small park plazas that date back to Spanish colonial times and have an absolutely charming feel. Independently ranked as one of the best urban places to live, Coyoacan is where Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, and Leon Trotsky all chose to reside, and museums dedicated to them now fill their old houses. Tranquil on the weekdays, filled with culture and music come the weekend, Coyoacan is more than simply a nice neighborhood – it’s a hotbed of culture and a must-see if in Mexico City.
One of the premier beaches in the Cabo San Lucas area, Chileno Beach offers sun-seekers unrivaled beauty, deep seclusion, and some excellent snorkeling opportunities. Protected by the Chileno Bay, the waters here are calm, warm, and clear, and the reefs that lie just offshore act as home to an abundance of sea-life. It’s no wonder that Chileno beach is one of Cabo’s most celebrated treasures, as a visit to the beach here is close to what you get in the rich Caribbean.
Chileno beach is a popular stop for those looking to do a bit of underwater exploration or to laze on the sunny shores of this secluded escape. Still, there are few accommodations to be found here (bathrooms aside), so if you’re planning on making the trek to Chileno Beach yourself, it’s best to bring your food and snorkel gear yourself, unless you’ve planned to take a tour of the area.
La Casa Azul, or the Blue House, was the birthplace of iconic artist Frida Kahlo (1907 - 1954), whose beautifully tortured self portraits and passionate, tumultuous life with muralist Diego Rivera have elevated her to the status of legend.
Her home, today one of Mexico City's most popular museums, doesn't have an outstanding collection of her own work, though there are several sketches and less famous pieces to see. Instead, the rooms and gardens - still in much the same state as she left them - offer insight into her life as a wife, lover, artist, and hub of the city's (and Latin America's) socialist intellectual scene during the 1920s and 1930s. The tender details, from her brushes and canvasses, the pre-Columbian art collected by her husband, and even the prosthetic leg she wore in the months before her untimely death, will touch even casual visitors to the Museo Frida Kahlo.
Came to Mexico City in search of some adventure? Look no further than Arena Mexico. This hard-hitting lucha libre (Mexican Wrestler) playground is known to wage epic battles of good versus evil in full luchador splendor.
Built in 1968 to hold 16,500 spectators, this was once the largest stadium ever built for professional wrestling – proving what a following the sport has in Mexico City, which is a little different from its American counterpart. In Mexico, the lucha libre match is a fight not just of contestants, but of good vs. evil, and the crowd (of all ages) gets behind the event to cheer for their favorite wrestler in whatever his particular plight might be. Beer is served, the rules are announced (though loosely adhered to), and then all bets are off, so to speak. Truly an event unique to Mexico, if you’re the type of traveler who wants to do how the Romans do, you must attend an event at Arena Mexico and see the tight-masked wrestlers do their thing.
Relaxed Chankanaab Park - or Parque Chankanaab - is a lovely and laid-back "eco archaeological park," just south of the town of Cozumel. There are several attractions on dry land, including faux Mayan ruins, pleasant gardens, dolphin and sea lion shows, and good seafood.
The main attraction, however, is the wildlife rich undersea park, which you can explore with rented snorkel equipment. They also offer regular diving (you must have PADI certification) and the Sea Trek Adventure, like a resort dive with a breathing helmet but no certification necessary. You could also swim in a tank with dolphins, manatees and sea lions for an extra fee.
Quinta Avenida in Playa del Carmen in Mexico is niet te missen. Het is de hoofdstraat van de stad. Quinta Avenida ligt parallel aan de kust en doet zowel dienst voor automobilisten als voetgangers die de stad willen verkennen. Het is een populaire plek om te overnachten, want de hotels langs deze straat bieden een ideaal startpunt voor trips naar het strand en de vele winkels, clubs en restaurants. De winkels zijn zeer divers, met lokale ambachten, kleding en andere modeaccessoires, mooie sieraden en tabakswinkels (u kunt hier Cubaanse sigaren kopen). Ook zijn er regelmatig straatartiesten te zien die de bezoekers aan Quinta Avenida bezighouden.
Considered one of the world's most beautiful buildings, the Mexico City Palace of Fine Arts - or Palacio de Bellas Artes - is a harmonious synthesis of Art Nouveau, Art Deco, and Baroque styles, a style sometimes called "Porfiriano," after architecture-obsessed Mexican President Porfirio Díaz, who commissioned the project.
The exterior, surrounded with gardens, rises in elegant columns and domes above the cool, green Alameda Central. Inside, it is an exceptional art exhibition, filled with a permanent collection of statues, murals, and other outstanding ornamentation. In addition, there are regular world-class art exhibitions open to the public.
In addition to its daytime attractions, you can appreciate the building's acoustic excellence by enjoying a performance at its National Theater. International artists appear regularly, but try to catch Mexico City's own Ballet Folklórico de México Compania Nacional or National Symphonic Orchestra.
De Maya’s noemden deze adembenemende ondergrondse bestemming een heilige bron. Tegenwoordig zien reizigers het als een unieke scuba-duikervaring. Hier kunnen duikers met een openwaterlicentie de indrukwekkende grotten en ondergrondse rivieren verkennen. Deze zijn al ongeveer 7.000 jaar oud. Dit natuurwonder bestaat uit bijna 6500 kilometer aan ondergrondse gangen. U ziet hier van dichtbij de opmerkelijke ecosystemen die alleen hier bestaan en via helder blauw water naar een landschap stromen vol met rotsachtige stalactieten en stalagmieten.
The Mexican flag refers to a vision dating to the 13th century, telling Aztec seers to seek an eagle on a cactus, devouring a snake, and build their temples there. The wandering tribe finally found their sign atop an island in Lake Texcoco, and built the mighty city of Tenochtitlán upon it.
Fast forward 7 centuries, to a 1978 electrical problem close to the Zócalo, Spanish Colonial heart of Mexico City. Workers, digging into the soft earth, uncovered a massive, eight-ton stone depicting Coyolxauhqui, Aztec goddess of the moon. Archaeologists who had long suspected that the Templo Mayor, or Great Temple lay beneath this neighborhood, were vindicated. Throughout the 1980s, Spanish buildings were cleared away as excavation revealed an unprecedented wealth of treasures from every corner of the Aztec Empire. The old pyramid was decapitated by the Spanish advance, but much remains: walls of stuccoed skulls and enormous carvings dedicated to Tlaloc, god of storms.
North America may not be known for its regal royalty or holding court, but Chapultepec Castle in Mexico City—the only palace on the continent—is definitely the real deal. Located more than 7,000 feet above sea level, Chapultepec has housed sovereigns, served as a military academy and was even an observatory. In 1996 the castle was transformed into Capulet Mansion for the movie Romeo and Juliet, too.
Until 1939, Chapultepec Castle served as the presidential residence. Then a new law moved it elsewhere and the castle became home to both the National Museum of History and the National Museum of Cultures instead. A stroll through these halls, followed by a tour of lush castle grounds is a perfect way to spend a Mexico City afternoon.
Chapultepec Park, or Grasshopper Hill, is the largest city park in the world, an awesome expanse of greenery marbled with walking paths that meander between quiet ponds, monumental buildings, and a world-class collection of museums. Visitors could enjoy a quiet afternoon in its embrace, surrounded the sidewalk stands, soccer games, and other amusements, or explore the park for months on end, finding something new every day.
The park was probably set aside as green space in the 1300s, but wasn't officially protected until 1428, by King Nezahualcoyotl. The Spanish and Mexican governments have since maintained most of its natural integrity, though they did add aqueducts, palaces and other public spaces within. The most popular attractions include the massive zoo, also founded in the 1400s; the National Museum of Anthropology; La Feria Chapultepec Mágico, a small amusement park; the Ninos Heroes Monument; and the President's mansion at Los Pinos.
De Paseo de la Reforma is voor Mexico-Stad wat de Champs-Élysées voor Parijs is. Het is niet zo maar een grote straat door de stad, maar een historische ontmoetingsplek, waar de indrukwekkende geschiedenis van Mexico-Stad zichtbaar en voelbaar is.
De straat werd ooit aangelegd in opdracht van de kersverse keizer Maximiliaan. Paseo de la Reforma moest het centrum van de stad verbinden met het keizerlijke kasteel in het park van Chapultepec. Eerst heette de straat ook Keizersavenue, maar na de executie van Maximiliaan en de bevrijding van het Mexicaanse volk werd de straat hernoemd naar Paseo de la Reforma. Vanaf dat moment gold het als toonbeeld van de veerkracht van de Mexicanen.
Tegenwoordig staan de belangrijkste gebouwen van Mexico-Stad langs deze straat. Tijdens het bewind van president Diego werd de straat gewild bij de Mexicaanse elite, waardoor er een aantal huizen in Europese stijl aan de straat verschenen.
One of the most popular snorkeling destinations in the Bay of Banderas is Los Arcos. The protected marine park has all manner of treats in store for avid snorkelers and divers.
There are islands to visit, reefs to dive, tunnels to swim through and caves to explore, providing plenty of the arches and grottoes that give the park its name.
The marine life is stupendously varied, from clownfish to rays, octopus and lobsters and angelfish.
Organize a day cruise for relaxing at sea and peerless diving and snorkeling in the caves of Los Arcos.
Prachtige onderwater ruimten met lichtval. In de omgeving van Riviera Maya in Mexico zijn veel van deze natuurwonderen te vinden. Casa Cenote heeft ook nog eens een unieke ligging midden in een mangrovebos dicht bij de zee. Het lijkt haast een onderwaterjungle met het door algen bedekte mangrovebos en zacht zand.
Omdat het in de openlucht ligt en minder gesloten is dan de andere ruimten is er vaak meer zeeleven te bewonderen. Casa Cenote verbindt een van de grootste onderwaterrivieren met de oceaan. Hierdoor zijn er zowel zoetwater- als zoutwatervissen te vinden. De unieke combinatie van helder zoet water en ondergrondse holtes en rotsformaties maken dit een unieke plek voor scubaduikers en snorkelaars. De lichtbundels die door het water heen schijnen versterken de schoonheid en maken het geheel nog beter zichtbaar.
International restaurants, popular nightclubs and trendy bars line the shaded streets of Condesa, an up-and-coming district in the Cuauhtemoc Borough of Mexico City. Just west of Zocalo, this youthful neighborhood is known for its attractive residents, fashionable businessmen and innovative artists. Its quiet cafes, unique galleries and stylish boutiques offer an ideal way to spend a leisurely afternoon in the city, and Art Deco architecture dating back to the early 20th Century makes for picturesque strolls.
Stop by the Trolleybus Theater, where abandoned trolleys provide a creative space for inventive theater and art shows, or wander over to the well-known Parque Mexico. Previously a racetrack, this green space has since become the center of the district and is recognized by the Instituto Nacional de Antropologia e Historia, as an important part of Mexico City’s unique charm.
Puerto Vallarta’s Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe was built over the course of several decades in the first half of the 20th century.
Built in rustic pink stone, to a neo-baroque design, one of the prettiest details is the crown that tops the church bell tower.
The liveliest time to visit the church is December 1 to 12, when crowds celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe with street processions, festive food and mariachi music.
The festival coincides with the anniversary of the founding of Puerto Vallarta, so locals have even more reason to celebrate.
One of the oldest markets in the city, the San Juan Market (Ernesto Pugibet Market) was established in colonial times and is over 150 years old. One of the most popular places to shop in the city, the market had simple roots, once beginning as people put things out upon blankets on the ground. Perhaps it is for precisely this reason that San Juan Market has excelled where others have failed. Known for its gourmet products and its exotic ingredients, the gathering is what all markets hope to be – unique, genuine and useful.
Look for La Jersey, a famous stall where imported delicacies are sold, such as foie gras, French cheeses and Italian meats. There is also Café Triana where you’ll taste the finest in Mexican organic coffees. Other stalls sell everything from quail to venison to shark.
The Diego Rivera Anahuacalli Museum, commonly just referred to as the Anahuacalli Museum, can be tricky to find in Mexico City, but it is worth the extra effort to visit. Diego Rivera was a famous painter who was known for his cubist style and murals. He lived in Mexico City for most of his life and was married to the artist Frida Kahlo. The Anahuacalli Museum is designed by him and houses ancient artifacts he amassed during his lifetime as well as some of his own works of art. The museum was opened in 1964, after Rivera’s death, though the layout and design of Anahuacalli was planned out by the artist prior to his passing. The pyramid-shaped building made of volcanic stone is impressive in and of itself to see, but the real allure of the museum is inside where 2,000 artifacts from his massive Pre-Columbian art collection is housed. A tour through the museum will teach you about the history of Mexico’s ancient civilizations, a subject Rivera was especially passionate about.