30 BEST things to do in Mexico that you can’t miss (2024)

Discover the most popular things to do in Mexico to plan the best vacation possible.

Plan your trip to Mexico

👩🏻 Best guided tours in Mexico

🏡 Where to stay in Mexico

Mexico has to be one of the most amazing countries in the world.

Tropical beaches and dreamy cenotes. Delicious tacos, and ancient temples like Teotihuacan. And that’s not all.

I’ve made of list of the top things to do in Mexico that you shouldn’t miss on your trip.

Let’s dive in!

This post contains referral links for products I love. Adventurous Miriam earns a small commission at no extra cost to you if you purchase through my links. I appreciate your support ♡ Learn more

Mexico bucket list

Things to do in Mexico

1. Explore Chichén Itzá, the famous Mayan ruins

Chichen Itza – known locally as Chicken Pizza – is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.

It might even be the most popular landmark in all of Mexico.

This ancient Mayan city is famous for the iconic El Castillo pyramid, and it’s important to get there early to beat the crowds. Don’t miss the Ball Court.

Book a guide – Chichen Itza, Cenote and Valladolid All-Inclusive Tour

Things to do in Mexico - Chichen Itza
Chichén Itzá is a major historical site

2. Dive into the Cenotes of Yucatan

In Mexico’s beautiful Yucatan peninsula, you’ll find magical cenotes, which are natural swimming holes. So, make sure to bring your swimsuit and a towel!

Some cenotes are hidden in caves, others are open air. Each has its atmosphere, like the popular Ik Kil or the serene Cenote Azul.

Avoid the crowds – Private Cenotes tour from Playa del Carmen

Things to do in Mexico - yucatan Cenotes

3. Stroll through Mexico City’s historic center

Mexico City has a beautiful historic center.

I recommend starting at the Zocalo, the main square, and then checking out the Aztec ruins at Templo Mayor and the stunning Metropolitan Cathedral.

Street vendors and lively music add to the vibrant atmosphere.

Book a guided tour – Walking Tour of the Historic Center of Mexico City

Things to do in Mexico - Mexico City
The historic city center

4. Enjoy the beaches of Tulum

Picture soft white sand and turquoise waters and you’d still be amazed at how dreamy the beaches in Tulum are.

You can snorkel here or go paddle boarding. We spent most of our time swimming and tanning on the beach.

Oh, and don’t miss the Tulum ruins overlooking the sea!

Book here – Tulum Ruins, Reef Snorkeling, Cenote and Caves

Things to do in Mexico - Tulum (2)

5. Visit the Frida Kahlo Museum in Mexico City

The Frida Kahlo Museum in Mexico City (also known as Casa Azul or the Blue House) is a deep dive into the artist’s life.

Once inside, you’ll see her art, personal belongings, and the vibrant blue walls. It’s a real window into Frida Kahlo’s world.

Book tickets in advance to skip the long lines.

Book a tour – Frida Kahlo Museum VIP: Skip-the-line & Bikes & Churros

6. Experience the nightlife in Playa del Carmen

We’ve been out a few times in Playa del Carmen, and it has always been super fun!

Start with a sunset beach drink, then head to Fifth Avenue for bars and clubs.

Whether you love live music, fancy cocktails, or dancing until dawn, there’s something for everyone.

7. Taste authentic tacos al pastor

Tasting authentic tacos al pastor is a must in Mexico!

Find a busy street vendor – the busier the better because then you know it’s the good stuff.

Watch them shave the marinated pork off the spit, top it with pineapple, and wrap it in a fresh corn tortilla. It’s a flavor explosion, especially when you add spicy salsa.

Things to do in Mexico - tacos al pastor

8. See the Monarch butterflies in Michoacán

Witnessing Monarch butterflies in Michoacán is amazing.

Go between November and March when millions migrate from Canada.

Seeing those orange and black wings fluttering around is like nothing else – truly a natural spectacle.

Book a tour here – Butterfly Monarch Tour from Mexico City

Things to do in Mexico - Monarch butterflies in Michoacán
The monarch butterfly biosphere reserve

9. Kayak in the Sea of Cortez

Kayaking in the Sea of Cortez is a great adventure. You can either rent a kayak or join a tour. The water is usually calm, so it’s perfect for beginners.

When you’re there, paddle around, enjoy the clear blue sea, and keep an eye out for dolphins and sea lions.

Book a tour – Los Cabos Arch and Playa del Amor by Glass Bottom Kayak

10. Discover the colorful streets of San Miguel de Allende

In San Miguel de Allende, you’ll find some of the most beautiful streets. They’re super colorful, and the buildings are old and charming.

Duck into some art galleries or grab a snack from a street vendor.

It’s a chill place, great for just hanging out and seeing what’s around the next corner.

Book here – Historical and Cultural Walking Tour of San Miguel de Allende

Things to do in Mexico - San Miguel de Allende

11. Snorkel in Cozumel’s coral reefs

Cozumel is one of the best places to snorkel in Yucatan. You can rent gear or join a snorkeling tour.

The water is crystal clear, and the coral reefs are full of colorful fish and even sea turtles.

Book here – Cozumel Snorkeling Tour: Palancar, Columbia and El Cielo Reefs

Things to do in Mexico - Cozumel

12. Hike the Copper Canyon

In the north of Mexico, you’ll find the Copper Canyon. It’s larger and deeper than the Grand Canyon!

There are trails for every level, so pick one that suits you. Just remember to bring water and good shoes because it can get pretty rugged.

Book here – Adventure tour from Creel Pueblo Magico

Things to do in Mexico - Copper Canyon

13. Attend a traditional Day of the Dead

The Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) is Mexican culture at its best.

Streets are lively with parades and music. People wear colorful costumes and skull makeup.

Visit the candlelit cemeteries at night, and make sure to try the special bread, Pan de Muerto.

Visit Lake Patzcuaro for the Day of the Dead

Lake Patzcuaro is the place to be for the Day of the Dead. Expect traditional dances, locals in elegant costumes, and striking skull make-up.

Things to do in Mexico - Day of the Dead

14. Visit the pyramids of Teotihuacan

Teotihuacan is an ancient Mesoamerican city near Mexico City and it’s home to massive pyramids. It’s over 2,000 years old.

The Pyramid of the Sun, one of the largest in the world, offers a killer view. Climbing those pyramids is a workout but totally rewarding – just see the view in my image below.

Head out early, wear good walking shoes, and a hat, and don’t forget water – it gets scorching hot!

Book your tour here – Teotihuacan Private Tour from Mexico City

Teotihuacan, Mexico

15. Relax in the hot springs of Hierve el Agua

Hierve el Agua, known for its natural hot springs and petrified waterfalls, is a must-visit near Oaxaca. It’s about a two-hour drive from the city.

The springs are great for a relaxing dip with an incredible view. So, remember to bring a swimsuit, sunscreen, and water.

Book a tour – Hierve el Agua and Mezcal Distillery Tour

Things to do in Mexico - Hierve el Agua

16. Shop at the markets of Oaxaca

The markets in Oaxaca are a feast for the senses.

Try local specialties like mole, tamales, and Oaxacan cheese. Don’t miss the handcrafted textiles and pottery.

Haggling is part of the fun, but remember to do it respectfully.

Book here – Oaxaca Food & Markets Tour

Things to do in Mexico - Oaxaca

17. Explore the Mayan ruins of Palenque

Palenque is an ancient Mayan city that’s over 1,000 years old. The ruins are hidden in the jungle, so it has that Indiana Jones vibe.

Plus, it’s not as crowded as other sites, which is awesome.

The main palace and the Temple of the Inscriptions are must-sees. And I really do recommend going with a guide so you can get the history behind the places.

Our guide also took us through the jungle where we got to taste termites and avocados, fresh from the tree.

Book here – Private tour to Palenque Ruins, Misol Ha Falls and Agua Azul

Palenque, Mexico

18. Experience a traditional Temazcal ceremony

A Temazcal ceremony is a traditional Mexican sweat lodge experience. You can find them at some resorts or local villages.

It’s like a sauna but with rituals and herbal steam, and they’re used for spiritual healing.

Be prepared for heat and tight spaces!

Get the luxury edition – Temazcal Ancestral Healing Ceremony

Things to do in Mexico - temazcal

19. Relax at Isla Mujeres

Isla Mujeres is a small island off Cancun that means “Island of Women” in Spanish.

Catch a ferry from Cancun – it’s a short trip, and trust me, it’s worth it!

After you’ve arrived, make sure to rent a golf cart to explore the island. Don’t miss the beautiful Playa Norte for beach time, the sea turtle sanctuary, and the scenic views at Punta Sur.

Take a day trip to Isla Mujeres – Catamaran Tour to Isla Mujeres from Cancún

Isla Mujeres, Mexico

20. Join a food tour

Taking a food tour is a must if you like Mexican food (and let’s be honest, who doesn’t?).

Join a guided tour or just hop from one local eatery to another. They have the best street food, too, so make sure to try it – it’s a delicious way to learn about the city’s rich culinary history.

Book here – Historic Center Food Tour in Mexico City

Things to do in Mexico - food tour

21. Watch a Lucha Libre match

Lucha Libre is professional Mexican wrestling, and the atmosphere is electric, with masked wrestlers and loud crowds.

Get into it – cheer, boo, and laugh. It’s not just a sport, it’s a whole entertainment experience.

Either head to Arena Mexico or Arena Coliseo or book a tour in advance. Tours also come with tacos, beer, and mezcal.

Watch in Mexico City – Lucha Libre Tickets & Tacos & Beer & Mezcal 

Things to do in Mexico - Lucha Libre

22. Visit the Guanajuato Mummies Museum

That’s right!

There a real-life mummies at the Guanajuato Mummies Museum in Guanajuato City.

These naturally preserved mummies were discovered in a local cemetery and they’re super creepy but also intriguing!

Just a heads up – it’s a popular spot, so be ready for some crowds.

23. Explore the colonial city of Merida

Wander the colorful streets of Mérida, and check out the grand Plaza de la Independencia and Mérida Cathedral.

Don’t miss the local markets for some authentic Yucatecan food.

Book a food tour – Merida Street Food Walking Tour

Things to do in Mexico - Merida

24. Swim with whale sharks in the Yucatan Peninsula

Swimming with whale sharks in the Yucatan Peninsula is one of the best adventures I’ve had.

We took the tour from Isla Mujeres, but you can also book a tour from Cancun or Isla Holbox between May and September. They’ll take you out to sea where you can snorkel with these gentle giants.

The tour is safe and guided, and seriously, how cool to swim with the biggest fish in the ocean!

Book here – Whale Shark Adventure in Isla Mujeres and Cancun

Swimming with whale sharks in Mexico

25. Take a cooking class for Mexican cuisine

Taking a cooking class in Mexico is a great way to dive into the culture. You’ll find classes in most tourist towns.

They often start with a market visit to pick fresh ingredients, and then you’ll cook dishes like mole or tamales. It’s hands-on, and fun, and you get to eat your dishes!

Book here – Cabo San Lucas Mexican Cooking Experience with Market Tour

Things to do in Mexico - cooking class

26. Visit the Sumidero Canyon

If you’re in San Cristobal de las Casas, make sure to visit Sumidero Canyon!

You can take a boat tour through the massive canyon walls, and they’re up to 1,000 m high!

The views are incredible with waterfalls and wildlife, like crocodiles and monkeys.

Book a tour – Sumidero Canyon – Lookouts – Chiapa de Corzo


27. Huasteca Potosina waterfall

Huasteca Potosina is in San Luis Potosi, and you can drive or take a bus there.

Once you’re there, hike or swim up to the waterfall. It’s a nice spot for a swim and some photos.

Book here – 3-Day Tour in Huasteca Potosina from Ciudad Valles

Things to do in Mexico - Huasteca Potosina

28. Visit the pink lake of Las Coloradas, Yucatán

Did you know that there’s a pink lake in Mexico?

Las Coloradas is located in Yucatán, close to Merida, and it’s pink due to algae and shrimp.

You can’t swim here, but the view is Instagram-worthy. Tours are available, and they sometimes include a visit to a nearby flamingo sanctuary.

Book a tour to the Pink Lake from Cancun or Tulum.

Things to do in Mexico - Los Colorados

29. Grutas Tolantongo, Hidalgo

Grutas Tolantongo in Hidalgo is the most beautiful hot springs and caves – it reminds me of Pamukkale thermal pools in Turkey.

The place has pools built into cliffs and a warm river. You can stay overnight in a cabin or camp to enjoy it.

Book a tour from Mexico City – Tolantongo Caves Hot Springs & Waterfalls

Things to do in Mexico - Grutas Tolantongo

30. Playa Balandra and El Arco de Cabo San Lucas

Playa Balandra has got super clear water, perfect for swimming, and nearby is El Arco in Cabo, which is this amazing rock arch you gotta see by boat.

Both are in Baja and totally worth the visit for the views and beach vibes.

Book here – Horseback Riding on a Punta Cana Beach

Things to do in Mexico - Playa Balandra
Baja California

FAQ – Things to do in Mexico

What activities are done in Mexico?

In Mexico, you can explore ancient ruins like Chichen Itza, relax on beaches in Tulum, snorkel in Cozumel, taste street food in Mexico City, hike in Copper Canyon, and experience vibrant local fiestas.

There’s also kayaking in the Sea of Cortez and visiting the colorful streets of San Miguel de Allende.

What are 7 things Mexico is famous for?

These are some of the things Mexico is known for:

  1. Ancient Mayan and Aztec ruins like Chichen Itza and Teotihuacan.
  2. Beautiful beaches like Cancun and Playa del Carmen.
  3. Delicious cuisine, especially tacos and mole.
  4. Lively Day of the Dead celebrations.
  5. Mariachi music.
  6. Tequila and mezcal.
  7. Colorful handcrafts and vibrant art, including Frida Kahlo’s works.

What can tourists do if they visit Mexico?

Tourists in Mexico can explore ancient ruins, enjoy beautiful beaches, sample delicious local cuisine, visit colonial cities, snorkel in coral reefs, experience vibrant cultural festivals, and shop for unique handicrafts.

They can also hike in natural reserves and learn about traditional arts and crafts.

What is the number 1 tourist attraction in Mexico?

Chichen Itza, the ancient Mayan ruins, is often considered the number 1 tourist attraction in Mexico.

It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site and renowned for its historical significance and architectural beauty, particularly the iconic El Castillo pyramid.

More posts about Mexico you might like

Save it!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *