If you are planning your first trip to Latin America, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the dazzling procession of available adventures.

Mexico travel

Mexico travel

Mexico holidays are a welcoming North American gateway to the diverse patchwork of Central and Southern states below it. First Choice flies out to this Latin jewel and from here you can work your way down to explore the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu, seek out the dizzying wonders of Iguazu Falls in Brazil, or stalk through cloud forest in the hope of spotting jaguars in Nicaragua.

First, there is a vibrant and richly cultured land to scale. So let’s take a look at where you should check out in Mexico before moving on.

Beach and ruins in Cancun

While Mexico may immediately conjure associations with the glorious hustle and thrum of its capital city, there’s more to this epic country than its urban areas. Venture instead to one of its sandy retreats for an altogether more chilled out vibe. Cancun, in the northeast of the Mexican Caribbean is well-frequented by visitors, not just for its idyllic swathes of white beach and swaying palms, but also its position as meeting point of the Yucatan peninsula, Chichen Itza, and other, stellar Mayan ruins. This gives you the best of a resort holiday, without compromising on culture.

Cancun

Cancun

Temples and snorkelling in Riviera Maya

Riviera Maya is another beach paradise and Tulum is one of the hotspots on its 30 km of clear coastline. What make this area particularly special are the Mayan ruins that sit on the rugged cliffs overlooking the waters, where you’ll find the Temple of Frescoes. Snorkelling is another highlight in the Riviera Maya: the Great Maya Reef is the largest coral reef system in the Northern Hemisphere! Swim with over 500 species of fascinating marine life such as turtles, manta rays and a rainbow of tropical fish. Things get lively at night in Playa Carmen, making the area a perfect blend of relaxation, adventure and excitement.

Riviera Maya

Riviera Maya

Mountains and luxury in Puerto Vallarta

Along the alluring stretch of Mexico’s Pacific coast you will find the Puerto Vallarta resort. Boasting the same glorious mix of sands, waters and activities as its Mexican siblings, the area is also home to an old town, mountainous backdrop and contemporary shopping and retail scene. Adrenalin junkies can rent a jeep to tour the forest or ride a zipline down the Sierra Madre Mountains. Those looking for a more leisurely pastime can take a stroll down the cobbled streets and plaza, while calling in at boutiques and quirky shops. There are plenty of swish restaurants to choose for a bit of a treat before continuing your Latin American journey.

Clearly, Mexico has inviting waters to swim in and sunbathe near but if you want to head inland then Mexico City is a must, where you can tick off the Great Pyramid of Tenochtitlán, Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral and Chapultepec park.

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