Mexico is more than just beaches; 5 ways to stay active

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I’ve only ever been to Mexico twice and each visit was just a short break. After reading a number of blogs from backpackers and travelers though, my wanderlust has been piqued! Here are 5 of the more surprising things you can do in Mexico besides climbing pyramids and drinking tequila on the beach.

Gulf of Manico

Top 5 ideas for activity breaks in Mexico

If you’ve got a taste for adventure, Mexico’s coasts provide amazing scuba diving opportunities, its rivers the chance to do some pretty wild rafting and its caves the possibility to explore some incredible subterranean landscapes.

So, if you’re after a real adventure in Mexico, just what should you do?

1) Scuba diving and snorkeling

Mexico’s coastline is one of the country’s main attractions—just ask any American Spring Breaker or cruise ship tourist. Yes, it’s beautiful—but that’s not the main reason. Its waters are absolutely teeming with stunning marine life, which means scuba diving and snorkeling are some of the most popular coastal activities.

Just about every dive center caters to every level (novice to expert), it’s just a matter of finding the right place. The picturesque coral reefs of the Parque Marino Nacional Arrecifes de Cozumel are some of the most popular in Mexico. Not surprising, really, when you consider it’s part of the world’s second largest coral reef.

2) White water rafting

Is there any better adventure activity than this? I’m not sure there is! Mexico is full of rivers perfect for this adrenaline-heavy sport, so you shouldn’t have trouble finding something near where you’re based.

That said, one of the more popular places to try rafting is Veracruz’s Jalcomulco, on the Antigua River. Expect class two to class four rapids. Or, visit Chiapas, where you’ll find the Santa Domingo and Jatate Rivers.

3) Snorkeling with whale sharks

This sounds like an amazing experience that you can have in the Caribbean Sea – and, often, you can even actually touch the sharks while you’re there. Holbox Island, which is in Quintana Roo, is probably the best place to try it – especially since you’re likely to see loads of other amazing animals (like pelicans and flamingos) too.

Much more adrenaline-pumping than swimming with dolphins, wouldn’t you say?

4) Caving

There are loads of caves and cenotes in Mexico which makes caving a popular option for activity holidays. Going caving always has a real sense of adventure about it, and it’s something you can’t do everywhere, which I think gives it an added appeal.

If you want the ultimate caving experience, head to San Luis Potosi’s Sotano de las Golondrinas, an open-shaft cavern set in the jungle. The entrance is at the surface, and it starts with a drop of 1,200 feet! I also recall some famous salt caves from a National Geographic cover—something unusual and beautiful all at once.

5) Whale watching

If you ask me, whales are some of the world’s most amazing creates. I’ve always been fascinated by the vast, majestic creatures. It’s been a long time since I went whale watching but it’s one of those activities I’m always on the lookout for. Several kinds of whale can be spotted in the Sea of Cortez in Mexico, including blue and grey varieties.

If you want to go on a trip to spot them, San Carlos in Sonora and Magdalena Bay in Baja California Sur are both apparently excellent places.

Mexico is much more than just beaches, pyramids and ancient history. From what I’ve read about the various adventure activities in the country, it seems there’s quite a few thrilling things to do! Hayes Jarvis offer luxury accommodation booking throughout Mexico—something worth considering if you plan to be wearing yourself out with activities day after day!


Blogs published by Adam Groffman • Please note some posts do make me some money, but I never sacrifice my integrity in exchange for a favorable review. Read the full disclosure policy.

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  1. I came across this post while browsing the net. This is amazing as it totally gives information to those who plan to visit Mexico.

    I am actually also involved in a website that is currently on its development process which will be focused mainly on giving information to Mexico travelers that will help them ease the planning. So I hope that when it is up and live , you’ll check it out and share your experiences and knowledge to our users.


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