Mexico, formally known as “Estados Unidos Mexicanos” (United States of Mexico), is the most southern country of North America. It is bordered by the USA to the North, Guatemala and Belize to the South, the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea to the East and the Pacific Ocean and Sea of Cortez to the West. Mexico has a huge population of over 110 million people covering almost 10,000kms of coast line, desert, tropical forest, valleys and mountains. The country has a lot of varied terrain making it a country with a lot to offer in the way of tourism.
With many Mayan and Aztec historical sites to visit, great food, stunning scenery and welcoming people, Mexico is a fantastic holiday destination worth visiting.
Mexico also plays home to a number of unique diving options. The world’s second largest barrier reef is located in the Quintana Roo region (Cancun) and stretches over 1000kms covering Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras. Divers can experience reef diving, Bull shark and Great White shark diving, large pelagics. See Whales Sharks off Isla Mujeres or experience the cenotes of the Yucatan peninsula.
Australian passport holders do not require a visa. You may be required to purchase a tourist card to enter the country. The cost of this is approx.. US $25. Your passport must have a validity of at least 6 months beyond your intended stay. For more information and for holders of other passports, please refer to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website for the latest travel advice.
The currency is the Mexican Peso (MXN). Although US Dollars are also accepted in some places. One Australian dollar is worth approximately 10 pesos.
Spanish is the official language of Mexico, although in tourist areas, English is spoken. Over 50 indigenous languages are also spoken by small local populations.
110-120V and uses the USA plug type.
GMT-6 in Mexico
Clothing needs range depending on where in Mexico you are travelling and when. We recommend dressing conservatively to avoid attracting unwanted attention. Shorts and swim wear is acceptable in beach areas. Check the climate in the regions where you are visiting before departing.
Mexico has a range of climates due to size and topography. There are two main seasons in Mexico. The rainy season falls between May and September with a hurricane season in some areas between June and November. Low lying coastal areas are generally hot all year round, whereas highland areas have more moderate climates with an average of 18’c. Coastal areas experience temps in the high 20’c to mid 30’c. The further north you travel or elevation, the more mild the temperature.
Water temperatures also vary around Mexico. Socorro Islands experiences water temps of 21’c – 28’c, where as Cancun is 26’c – 29’c year round.
Your departure tax is included in your ticket, except when arriving internationally on some budget airlines.
Tipping is expected in Mexico as wages in service industries are very low. Tipping on a food bill “la cuenta” in Mexico is an average 15%. $1-$2 US on a round for bartenders, bell boys etc. $5 US for a tour guide per day and 15-20% on spa treatments.