July 13, 2024
Mexico Encouraging Tourists To Explore 177 ‘Magical Towns’ – These Are The Top 5 For Summer Getaways

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Mexico is more than just a picture-perfect beach destination.

Immersing yourself in our southern neighbor’s culture will immediately have you questioning why this country holds an iffy reputation.

I can attest that locals far and wide, from Tijuana to Chetumal, are warm, friendly, and welcoming, outside a select few no-go zones tourists should avoid.

Chen Rio Beach of Cozumel

Some travelers who visit America say we don’t actually have much of a culture as if we’re just glued to our phones and ordering food at the drive through rather than visiting ancient sites and bustling markets.

It’s not a bad argument, but Mexico is undeniably the antithesis, brimming with magnificent cultural sites no matter where you go.

In fact, the country is home to 177 designated pueblo magicos, translating to ‘magic towns’.

The Mexican government is encouraging tourists to take a deep dive into the endless magic of their country.

These are the top 5 magic towns for summer getaways:

Tulum

Tourists visiting Mayan site in TulumTourists visiting Mayan site in Tulum

If you didn’t know Tulum now has its own international airport by now, you must be one of the Americans glued to scrolling their phone aimlessly.

Tulum has soared to new heights thanks to the new airport providing much easier access by skipping Cancun and, of course, the highly anticipated Maya train – although, there have been some hiccups.

Interested in being one of the first to fly straight to Tulum? Check out your options on Google Flights here.

Beyond this popular beach destination’s new direct flights and thrilling train rides is a treasure trove of fascinating history.

Tulum was honored with pueblo magico status in 2015, largely in part due to ancient ruins overlooking the Caribbean like the unmissable El Castillo.

Pristine cenote outside TulumPristine cenote outside Tulum

Intermixed with a buzzing arts scene, don’t skimp out on Tulum’s incredible history as one of the best places to visit Mayan structures in Mexico, as they’re renowned for being extremely well-preserved.

Summertime is perfect for a visit as you can explore fascinating sites and the gorgeous waters of both the Caribbean and nearby cenotes all in one trip.

Cozumel

Do islands ever get old? Nada.

They’re even better when jam-packed with intriguing history and culture. While Mayan ruins may not typically top the list for an island paradise vacation, Cozumel is a different story.

Fresh fruit on Cozumel beachFresh fruit on Cozumel beach

This gorgeous island in the Caribbean Sea is more than just a popular cruise port and lavish resort hotspot.

As one of the latest destinations to be given pueblo magic status, the question should be, “why did it take so long?”.

With immaculate sites such as San Gervasio, El Cedral, and El Caracol, you’ll instantly discover why Cozumel is so much more than pristine blue waters.

Zihuatanejo

Zihuatanejo is the second half of the highly underrated all-inclusive resort destination of Ixtapa, which has done enough to catch my eye as my next Mexican vacation.

Aerial view if beach in ZihuatanejoAerial view if beach in Zihuatanejo

Commonly bunched together as Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo, the latter is a phenomenal place to experience not only scenic beaches but also a glimpse into the region’s past.

Like Cozumel, Zihuatanejo is yet another new addition to the exclusive pueblo magico club, being recognized in 2023.

Known for its stunning beauty and vibrant culture influenced by indigenous groups still showcased today through art, cuisine, and festivals, this lovely vacation spot is more than meets the eye.

For traditional dishes, a visit to either Restaurante Carmelitas or Restaurante Doña Celia will surely hit the spot. Aporreadillo, anyone?

Colorful Zihuatanejo signColorful Zihuatanejo sign

Loreto

While Los Cabos tends to steal the spotlight of Baja, there is one stunning coastal town perfect for a summer getaway.

Loreto is blissful, beautiful, and in some areas, timeless. While hitting the beach is the most tempting aspect of any of Mexico’s shores, a walk through Loreto’s fascinating city center is a must.

Lined with charming cobbled streets and 17th-century missions, you’ll be taken back to another era all while enjoying the jaw-dropping scenery surrounding this lesser-known gem.

Coronado Beach in Loreto, MexicoCoronado Beach in Loreto, Mexico

Lying along the Sea of Cortez, you’ll see why pueblo magico status isn’t only chalked up to history – it’s designated to emphasize Mexico’s natural beauty too.

Famed explorer Jacques Cousteau once dubbed the Sea of Cortez “The Aquarium of the World”.

Veracruz

Veracruz, both a city and state, is one of Mexico’s most underrated beach escapes. Better yet, the state as a whole is teeming with historic goodies.

Home to 6 separate pueblos magicos, the incredible sunny weather in summer makes for both the perfect beach escape and cultural immersion.

Cerro del Borrego Ecopark in VeracruzCerro del Borrego Ecopark in Veracruz

Between small-town charm and decadent eats, an adventure through Veracruz is the trip you’ve been searching for if real Mexico is more up your alley.

These are the 6 magic towns of Veracruz:

  • Coatepec
  • Coscomatepec de Bravo
  • Orizaba
  • Papantla
  • Zozocolco de Hidalgo
  • Xico

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Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

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