Discover Mexico travel guide

Image of a mexian woman weighting berries in a rudimentary scale in an open market

Located between the USA in the North and Belize and Guatemala in the South, Mexico is filled with beautiful beaches, cactus-strewn deserts and everything in between.

There’s plenty of history with Aztec and Mayan ruins scattered throughout, and despite the country’s proximity to America, it has remained a unique and individual destination.

Mexico shares a land border with the United States of America, Belize and Guatemala. Mexico spans four main time zones. Southeast Zone (UTC -5), Central Zone (UTC -6), Pacific Zone (UTC-7) & Northwest Zone (UTC-8), with only the Central, Northwest and parts of the Pacific Zone observing daylight savings time in Summer.

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Emergency Numbers Dial 911  
Main Ethnic Groups Mestizo 62%
Amerindian 21%
 
Main Religion 83% Roman Catholic
11% Protestant
 
Geographic Facts Capital and the Largest City: Mexico City (21.7 million people)  

Mexico’s culture and customs, while modern, are heavily based on religion, family and social class. They reflect the attitude of Mexico being laid back and fun but also the country’s complex history.

  • While skimpy clothes on the beach or in Cancun are fine, dress more appropriately if visiting Indigenous or conservative areas.
  • Arriving fifteen or thirty minutes late is still considered being on time.
  • Festivals and celebrations mean a lot to Mexicans. Being familiar with a few of the bigger dates on the festival calendar will get you a nod from the locals.
  • Hola = Hello
  • Adios = Goodbye
  • Por favor = Please
  • Gracias = Thank you
  • No hablo español = I don’t speak Spanish
Image of people walking on a zebra crossing in Shinjuku at sunset

Best time to visit
With warm weather at sea-level all year round, December to February can be a great time to visit Mexico. The rainy season extends from May to September and hurricanes can run through to October or November.

Seasons
Temperatures across Mexico vary throughout the year and across the country depending on the region. While it is warm at sea level all year round, higher elevations can become chillier in the months near December. Temperatures below are averages for Mexico City:

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Dry season
Oct to Apr
5° / 25°
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Wet season
May to Sept
25° / 32°
Transport

Mexico has a well-developed and comprehensive bus system which is the most common and efficient way to get around and between cities. Other options include trains, ferries and rental cars. In the cities, taxis are another low-cost option but it can mean haggling for a price as not all taxis have working meters.
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Dialing code +52

 
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Visas - Canadian citizens don’t need a visa to stay as a tourist for up to 180 days.
Icon of languages chat bubbles
Language is Spanish.
 
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Currency Mexican Peso (CAD$1 = MXN $14.14)
*average rate, April 2019.
Icon of a glass of beer
The drinking age in Mexico is 18.
Icon of a hand tipping
Tipping - 10 – 20% is expected in the service industries.
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Drive on the right side of the road.
 
Icon of an electrical socket
Electrical / Device: 120 V -Type B plug.

World records

  • Baluarte Bridge is the highest cable-stayed bridge in the world and can be found in Pueblo Nuevo, Durango Mexico.
  • The world’s largest taco weighed 750kg and was made in the city of Mexicali.

National icons

The national icons are the Spanish Guitar, Cactus and Sombreros.

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of all information as of the date of publishing, Allianz Global Assistance does not accept liability for any errors or omissions. Allianz Global Assistance strongly recommends seeking the guidance of a professional travel agent/agency for further information on a specific destination. On your next trip, whether to another province or country, ensure you have travel insurance as it may assist you in cases of unforeseen medical emergencies and other types of mishaps that can happen while you travel. Travel insurance does not cover everything, please always refer to the policy document for full terms and conditions, including limitations and exclusions. Allianz Global Assistance is a registered business name of AZGA Service Canada Inc. and AZGA Insurance Agency Canada Ltd. Photography Credits: Tati Nova photo Mexico, Gerald Marella, Shutterstock.com.
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