Mexico’s rich culture and joyful spirit are a large part of the country’s allure. Family connections and a strong sense of tradition are highly valued in Mexico, as seen on occasions like Día de los Muertos (the Day of the Dead), when the living remember the deceased by decorating their tombs and leaving gifts.
Stunning architecture abounds -- from Baroque-style cathedrals to old haciendas converted for modern use. Picturesque plazas are still intact in the centers of historic districts. Artists produce handcrafted goods like ceramics, jewelry, woodcarvings and leatherwork. Some artisans follow the same methods that their ancestors used to dye and weave the brightly colored textiles for which Mexico is known.
Cuisine also is an essential element of Mexico’s vivid cultural palette. Pre-Hispanic and Spanish influences combine to create the flavorful fare here, and seafood lovers will find abundant fresh fish dishes while visiting the Pacific coast, like huachinango, a red snapper preparation, ceviche and sopa de mariscos (seafood stew).
Finally, beautiful beaches and warm waters make the Mexican Riviera a hot spot for water sports of all kinds, notably deep-sea fishing, sea kayaking, surfing and scuba diving. Add great restaurants, a vibrant night life and great shopping, and it’s easy to understand why Mexico draws a variety of travelers to its western shores.