We all have our favorite travel and vacation destinations, and if we’re lucky enough to be able to afford to do so, we visit them again and again. There isn’t a major city or country in the world that’s small enough for you to see everything on a first visit, and so if you love what you see the first time around, you’re bound to want to go back. 

No matter how many times you’ve been to a destination, though, there’s always a first time. Going to a new country for the first time ever is what makes travel so exciting – it gives you the perfect balance of excitement and trepidation! Fear of the unknown is part of what makes us human, and so it’s totally normal to have a few concerns ahead of going somewhere you’ve never been before. Those concerns can apply to any location in the world, but today we’re talking about Mexico

Mexico is the crown jewel of Latin America. It’s known around the world for being a nation of parties, entertainment, great cuisine, beautiful beaches, and good times. If you want a fiesta, head to Mexico. There are hundreds of things that make Mexico a great place to visit, but you’ll also probably have a hundred questions before booking your trip. Let’s see if we can answer some of those questions for you with this special set of tips for first-time visitors to Mexico. 

They’re Not Joking About The Spicy Food

There are a lot of stereotypes about Mexico and Mexicans – not all of which are flattering or helpful – but one cliche that’s definitely true is that they love to put spice into their food. The connection between Mexico and hot chili is so well known that it’s even used as an advertising feature on mobile slots websites, where ‘Hot Chili’ is one of the most popular mobile slots currently available. If you get your food order wrong in Mexico, you may even feel a little bit like you’re playing mobile slots on websites such as Casino Sister Site because you’ll be gambling with the ingredients! If you’re sensitive to spice, you might be better ordering pre-packaged food from stores and heating it up. If you’re brave enough to try the restaurants, make sure whoever served you is very clear that you want as little spice as possible. 

Almost All Of It Is Safe To Visit

Forget the scare stories that repeatedly appear in the American press. Mexico is not full of the Zika virus, and nor is it riddled with crime. There may be slight trouble hotspot at the central northern border, but it’s highly unlikely you’d ever have a reason to visit that area as a tourist. Mexico loves tourists and tourism and does everything it can to make people feel safe and welcome in the country. You’re not going to run into the cartel on your way home from a day out in town. You’re no more likely to be mugged than you are in any American city. Relax, and enjoy the scenery. You don’t need to be on guard all the time. 

Timing Is Important

Pay close attention to this before you book your trip – weather conditions in Mexico vary dramatically from season to season and location to location. It’s almost insufferably hot between May and September in all of the beach resorts. You should completely avoid the Caribbean coast of the country between September and November because that’s hurricane season. If you’re visiting Mexico City, you’ll be seven thousand feet above sea level, and it’s colder there in winter than it is in New York. It isn’t especially warm at any time of year. The most temperate time for the average American to visit a Mexican beach is between December and April when the temperatures are a little kinder, and the hurricanes are out of the way. The only downside of that is that it’s when everyone else will be visiting, too. 

Cancun Isn’t All About Parties

Some people who visit Mexico give Cancun a wide berth because they associate it with Spring Break, and wild parties. Cancun can be a party city, but not all of it, and not all of the time. If you write it off as a place to visit, you’ll be missing out on some spectacular sights – and that would be a real shame. You’ll find Cancun to be a quiet, delightful city if you steer clear of its ‘hotel zone’ – that’s where all the noise happens. If you’re willing to take a trip to the south of Cancun, you’ll find Bacalar and its legendary multicolored lake. Mahahaul is also close to Cancun and is arguably the best-kept-secret beach town in the whole country. That’s also where you’ll find a lot of Mexico’s more creative and artistic citizens. The nearby jungle is full of ancient Mayan wonders, too, which are available for a guided tour. Miss Cancun, and miss the Mayans. That isn’t something you want to do! 

You Don’t Need To Know Spanish

We offer you this piece of advice with a word of caution – you don’t ‘need’ to speak Spanish to get around Mexico, but the locals do appreciate the effort if you try. You should always make an attempt to ingratiate yourself to your host country as a visitor, and trying to learn a few basic Spanish phrases is a small way of showing Mexicans your respect. That being said, all of the Mexicans you’ll meet in tourist-heavy areas – especially restaurants and hotels – will be fluent in English. It’s part of their job. If you’re heading further afield or off the beaten track, though, you may want to take a Spanish phrasebook with you. Failing that, keep your mobile phone charged and use Google translate. The further away you are from major population centers, the less likely it is that you’ll find English speakers. 

We hope we’ve dealt with the more significant queries you might have about visiting Mexico for the first time, and that you feel a little more at ease with the idea of traveling there as a result. Whether it’s a beach holiday or a Mayan cultural retreat you’re looking for, Mexico has everything you could ever hope to find in a vacation destination. Enjoy it!