Dominated in some ways by its northern neighbor, the United States of America, Mexico has its own proud and diverse culture the origins of which go back thousands upon thousands of years. Although part of the North American continent, Mexico’s waves of Spanish invaders have left a distinctive Latin stamp on the country, and its oil riches have allowed its cities to boom. Yet there are huge, unspoiled areas to explore where the pace of life harks back to earlier days.
Mexico has a generally warm to hot climate, making the beach a popular destination, but it can get quite cold in winter months at higher elevations. It’s as well to remember that hurricane season lasts from June to November.
The country has a good bus and road network, though journeys can be long. Flying can prove to be a good option, with airlines such as Aeromexico offering a wide range of interior destinations.
Tackling top gear off the road
Off-roading is an incredibly popular activity in Mexico thanks to its amazing range of locations. Whether it’s on a motorbike, in an ATV or a rugged 4×4, the country’s beaches, trails and challenging landscapes all offer fantastic thrills as well as heart-stopping excitement. With hills and jungles, dunes and dirt tracks, it’s little surprise that so many vacationers make the way to the country’s favorite off-road destinations.
Vehicles are available to hire, and it is advisable to carefully check on insurances and rental terms when arranging an off-road experience. Travelers bringing their own vehicles should also check what their insurers require before heading off into the wild open spaces. As well as individual off-roading, there are many organized tours available with experienced guides who know all the very best places to drive.
Top off-road locations
Rosarito, in Baja California, is a little to the south of Tijuana, close to the US border. It has beaches and hill trails that are popular with off-roaders, and rentals are easily available. Tours also operate, led by experienced guides, and these take in mountains or dunes; they are in demand from a variety of groups, including friends and corporate outings.
Though fishing is a main attraction for Los Cabos, right at the end of Baja California, off-roading is a great way to explore the region’s less accessible places. Visitors can ride the dune buggies that are used to compete in the famous Baja 1000 race in the desert, or head for the High Sierra where the terrain is rough and ready, and there can be surprises around every corner.
On the opposite side of the country, at the edge of the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico, is the vacation paradise of Cancun. Instead of gently idling on a beach, intrepid off-roaders roar off to the surrounding mangroves and jungles to test themselves against the wildness of the landscape. Many organized tours operate, including using Hummers for a beast of an experience, and there’s always the sea to cool off in at the end of a tough but fulfilling day.
Mexicali is a Mecca for dirt bike racing and exploration in the desert, with endless tracks and trails to range over at leisure.