There is no shortage of things to do in Mexico. The benefit of planning a tailor-made itinerary is that you can enjoy as many of the highlights Mexico has to offer as you want. Experiences on offer range from a weekend in the lively capital to exploring ancient Mayan and Aztec ruins; spectacular whale-watching expeditions; boat trips to offshore islands; cable car rides over the Copper Canyon; cooking classes and market visits in Oaxaca; and visits to indigenous villages in Chiapas.
In the capital, take a full-day city tour visiting the best sites, such as the Zócalo, the main square lined with the impressive Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral and the government’s National Palace. Search for Diego Rivera’s many murals decorating theatres, government buildings and showcased in museums. The enormous Anthropological Museum requires a full day or split over a few afternoons. Nearby you can also walk around the Chapultepec Park and Chapultepec Castle.
Outside of Mexico City, we would recommend a tour of Teotihuacán, pyramids dating back 2,000 years. Alternatively, you can take a short trajinera (brightly painted, flat-bottomed boat) ride along the canals of Xochimilco, where mariachi and marimba music are the soundtrack of the day.
On a tailor-made itinerary to Mexico you can choose to travel north-west from Mexico City to the pretty colonial towns of San Miguel de Allende and Guanajuato. Or venture further north and board the Chihuahua Pacific train to reach Copper Canyon and end your stay crossing the Sea of Cortez to La Paz, where you can spot blue whales off Espiritu Santo island between January and March.
Alternatively, journey south towards Oaxaca and Chiapas and enter the ancient lands of the Zapotecs and Mayas. In Oaxaca City, find out why it is famous for its cuisine and mezcal with a cooking class and visit local markets to taste moles (there are eight variations), crispy fried grasshoppers, and giant tlayudas – a large flat tortilla topped with meat, salad and cheese. Take a morning tour to the Zapotec capital of Monte Albán or visit the ruins of Mitla. In November, join the locals as they honour the memory of their ancestors in graveyards decorated with golden marigolds and street processions at the famous Day of the Dead festival.
In Chiapas, take a boat along the Grijalva river to the Sumidero Canyon, ending in Chiapa de Corzo, famous for its annual Fiesta Grande each January. Continue to San Cristóbal de las Casas and wander the charming cobbled streets and local handicraft markets. Experience the nearby Tzotzil Mayan villages, such as Zinacantan and San Juan Chamula to discover colourful textiles with flowered designs woven by treadle loom, and ancient rituals to ward off negative energies.
For those who are interested in Mexico’s fascinating ancient history, we would recommend visiting the Mayan ruins of Palenque, Uxmal, Chichén Itzá, and Tulum, among many others.