The Country of Mexico forms a part of the North American continent and lies directly south of the United States and is the fifth largest country in the Americas. It comprises of 31 states and a Federal District. The capital of Mexico City lies in the Federal District. Mexico is dominated by several mountain ranges and the more well-known ones are the Sierra Madre Oriental and the Sierra Madre Occidental. It is famous for its amazing beaches, and the best known Latin American pyramids include the Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Moon at Teotihuacán in central Mexico,
Mexico is one of the top five medical tourism destinations in the world. Its medical care center’s offer high-class and boutique-style recuperation facilities and the cost of a procedure is 70% to 80% less than the cost of the same procedure in the United States.
As per the 2016 statistics, Medical Tourism in Mexico is a $4.8 Billion industry. Every year, a staggering 1 Million medical tourists arrive in Mexico for various treatments and procedures. 70% of medical tourists come from California, Texas, and Arizona.
Tijuana, Cancun, Mexicali, and Monterrey are some of the more popular cities in Mexico for medical tourism and the flowing procedures:
Dental treatments including dental surgery
Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery
Other medical procedures like dermatology, orthopedics, gynecology, and ophthalmology.
Popular Parts of Mexico
Six Cities in Mexico that should be on your itinerary:
Mexico City – This enormous capital city is the most populous city on the North American continent. The metropolitan area of the city is home to a staggering 21.2 million people. El Zocalo, the main public square is a famous landmark in Mexico City. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Cancun –Is a major resort city with turquoise blue waters and striking white sandy beaches. It has a population of about 628,000 people. You can take day trips to the Mayan ruins, the unspoiled jungle habitats of Coba and Chichen Itza from Cancun.
San Miguel de Allende –Is one of the most popular cities in Mexico. The must-visit sites in this city are the San Miguel Arcangel Parish, the archaeological zone of Canada la Virgen and the handicraft market.
Guadalajara – It’s the second largest city of Mexico and has a population of 5.1 million. The city has a more relaxed feel and a distinctly Mexican flavor. The historic center is impressive with a cathedral and colonial architecture. Guadalaraja Cathedral, Instituto Cultural de Cabanas, and the Expiatory Temple are famous sights to visit.
Oaxaca – Is a southern Mexican city and is situated in a valley. It is home to 4.2 million inhabitants. Oaxaca Cathedral, Zocalo and Mercado Benito Juarez, and The Rufino Tamayo Museum are a few of the interesting places to see in this city.
Tijuana –Is a border city of Mexico and shares its border with California. Because of its location, this city is very popular with American medical tourists. The Avenida Revolucion is the main street and is lined with Bars and Restaurants. Popular landmarks include Jai Alai Fronton Palace, Centro Cultural Tijuana, and Estadio Caliente. It has a population of 1.3 million people.
Other important cities are Merida, Acapulco, Puebla City, Taxco Puerto Vallarto and Playa deal Carmen.
Weather and Climate in Mexico
Mexico as a whole does not have a uniform climate. It is a large nation and weather differs from region to region. Mexico’s topography is extremely diverse and so is its weather.
Mexico has two major seasons, the rainy and the dry seasons.
Rainy Season – Most of Mexico experiences rain from May to September or October. The weather is hot and humid in these months, especially in Southern Mexico. The average temperature in the summer months is around 83 degrees Fahrenheit. In winter, the temperature averages between 68- and 74-degrees Fahrenheit.
Dry Season – October to May there is hardly any rain and it happens to be the most popular time to visit Mexico. During the winter months of December to February, the non-coastal regions have cold weather. At times, it reaches freezing temperatures. June to November is the hurricane season and hence it is better to avoid traveling during this time.
Getting Around in Mexico
The easiest way to reach Mexico is through Mexico City International Airport, which is also referred to as Benito Juarez International Airport, is the busiest airport in Mexico. The airport links 52 domestic cities and 50 international destinations in Latin America, North America, Europe, and Asia. Aeromexico is the largest carrier serving many Latin American cities, domestic and international cities. Other prominent Mexican airlines are Interjet, Volaris and Aeromar. Major American carriers like United Airlines, American Airlines, and Delta Air also operate flights to Mexico City.
For travel within Mexico, air travel is the best mode considering the vast size of the country. Budget airlines like Avolar, Azteca, Interjet, vivaAerobus and Volaris offer competitive and cheap airfares for domestic travel.
You can also travel by local buses and hired cars between cities. However, the fastest mode of transport is the metro system that connects major cities like Mexico City, Guadalajara, and Monterrey.
It is easy to move around within Mexico City, as it has a pretty cheap public transport system. You have the option of the Metro, first and second-class buses, colectivos, and Nissan Tsuru libre taxis. Sitio taxis, its best not to hail cabs off the street after dark, and if you are unfamiliar with the city and don’t speak Spanish, it’s always best to always use taxis from Taxi Ranks.
Tourist Visas in Mexico
Traveling to Mexico as a tourist, you need to apply for and get a tourist visa well in advance. Your passport must be valid to cover at least three months beyond the duration of your visa. A Mexican tourist visa is for a single entry and valid for only six months. You should travel within 90 days of visa been issued.
Mexico has a waiver for the tourist visa requirement for the citizens of 67 countries including the USA, European Union, Latin America, and Australia. Under this privilege, you can visit Mexico for a period of 30 to 180 days without a tourist visa. However, you need to get an online Electronic Authorization before traveling to Mexico.
Nationals of Russia, India and China and a few other countries need to get a visa in advance before entering Mexico.
The currency of Mexico is Peso and has a $ symbol like the US Dollar. So, MXN is the alternative symbol to avoid confusion. Shopkeepers accept US dollars but refuse Euros. The conversion rate of a US dollar to Mexican Peso is 18.84 as of April 2019.
You can use debit and credit cards within city limits in Mexico, but many retailers levy a surcharge for credit cards. Small shopkeepers insist on cash. ATMs are present everywhere and have bilingual options with English as a choice.
Spanish is the first and the main language is spoken in Mexico. People also speak English in tourist areas and along the Northern border. However, it is always better to learn a little Spanish when you travel to Mexico.
Mexico does not have a national religion, but Roman Catholicism is a major faith.
Constitution Day (Feb 4), Benito Juarez’s Birthday (Mar 18), Independence Day (Sep 16), Revolution Day (Nov18) and Christmas (Dec 25) are some of the statutory public holidays in Mexico.