30 Things Mexico is Famous and Known For

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Sitting right at the edge of North and Central America, Mexico is a country with a rich history and culture. From its ancient civilizations to its more recent events, Mexico has always been a place of interest for the rest of the world. Mexico is famous for a variety of things, including its food, music, and natural beauty.

There are many things that make the country special and contribute to it being a popular travel destination for vacation makers and digital nomads.

What Is Mexico Famous For?

Mexico is famous for its vibrant culture, beautiful beaches, and rich ancient history. Mexico is also known for its delicious Mexican dishes and food, with some of its most popular exports including chocolate and hot peppers. If you’re looking to experience Mexico’s unique flavor, be sure to try out some of its traditional dishes, listen to Mariachi music, and explore its ancient ruins.

These are just some of the things that Mexico is known and famous for that you can experience on your trip!

Food Mexico Is Famous For

Mexican cuisine is a mix of indigenous ( Aztec and Maya ) and Spanish influences. Mexico is known for its spicy food, as well as its use of beans, rice, corn, and tortillas. Mexico is also home to the world’s hottest chili pepper, the habanero. Here are some of the food that Mexico is famous for.



You can’t talk about Mexico without mentioning tacos! Tacos are one of the most popular Mexican dishes and they come in all shapes and sizes. Known as the land of tacos, there are endless possibilities when it comes to fillings, toppings, and sides.

You can find them everywhere in Mexico, from the smallest street food stalls to the most refined restaurants. And yes, there are all sorts of stuff like mangoes and pineapple in tacos too! You just have to try it.

Mexico City is also widely considered the birthplace of tacos al pastor, which is made with spit-roasted pork. It’s made with pork that’s been marinated and cooked on a spit, like shawarma. Then, it’s cut into thin slices and served on a taco. The dish is thought to be a Mexican and Middle Eastern mix.



Mole is Mexico’s national dish. It’s a sauce, usually served over chicken or turkey that has more than 20 different ingredients, including chili peppers, chocolate, and almonds. However, there are as many moles as there are regions in Mexico. You can find red mole, green mole, yellow mole, and even black mole. Each Mexican state has its own specialty. But if you want to try the best mole, you should visit Puebla, where this dish was created.


Chile en Nogada

Chile en Nogada is a traditional Mexican dish that is typically served during September. It’s made with poblano peppers, stuffed with a mixture of meat, fruits, and nuts, and then covered in a creamy walnut sauce. The dish is also topped with pomegranate seeds, and cilantro, which represent the colors of the Mexican flag.


One of the most popular dishes that Mexico is famous for has to be guacamole. It’s a traditional avocado-based dip that’s usually served with tortilla chips. Guacamole is believed to have originated in the central Mexico state of Puebla, but it’s now popular all over the world. The word “guacamole” comes from the Nahuatl word “ahuacamolli”, which means “avocado sauce”.


Mexico is known as the birthplace of Chocolate. Mexico was actually one of the first places where cocoa was cultivated, and chocolate, as we know it today, originated here. Chocolate was so revered by ancient Mexicans that it was used as currency, and it even played a role in religious ceremonies.

The state of Tabasco produces about 70% of Mexico’s cocoa. Mexico is home to many chocolate museums, the most notable being the Museo del Chocolate in Puebla and the Museo de Chocolate Maya in Riviera Maya.



Mexico is famous for being the origin place of tequila, which is an alcoholic drink made from the blue agave plant. In order to be considered tequila, it has to be made in Mexico in specific regions of the country.

The most popular brands worldwide come from Mexico, such as Jose Cuervo and Patron. Although you can find tequila bars in any big city around the world, there’s nothing like tasting it in Mexico, where you can go on a tour of a tequila factory and learn about the production process.

The best place to do this is in Tequila, Jalisco, which is also home to the Tequila Express train that will take you on a tour of different tequila plantations.

History, Culture, And Traditions Mexico Is Known For


Día de Muertos (Day Of The Dead)

Mexico’s most famous holiday is Día de Muertos or Day of the Dead. It’s a festive occasion that celebrates the lives of loved ones who have passed away. The holiday is traditionally celebrated on November 1st and 2nd.

Día de Muertos is a mix of Aztec traditions and Catholic beliefs. The holiday is celebrated with food, drink, music, and dance. Families decorate altars with photographs of their loved ones, as well as candles, flowers, and other items. As a visitor, Oaxaca is widely considered the best place to experience the tradition/celebration of Día de Muertos.

One of the most important parts of the holiday is the Ofrenda, or altar. Families build altars to honor their deceased loved ones. Ofrendas usually have three levels, which represent heaven, earth, and purgatory. The altars are often decorated with photographs of the deceased, as well as candles, flowers, and other items.


Aztec History and Heritage

Mexico City is the site of one of the largest and most important ancient civilizations, the Aztecs. Mexico City was once Tenochtitlan, the capital of the mighty Aztec empire. The city was founded in 1325 on an island in Lake Texcoco.

Today, Mexico City covers over 1,500 square kilometers (about the size of Rhode Island), making it one of the largest cities in the world. Mexico City is home to over 21 million people and is the second-most populous city in the Americas (after Sao Paulo, Brazil).

The Aztecs were a powerful and warlike people. They built a huge empire that included much of what is now Mexico and parts of Central America. The Aztecs were conquered by the Spanish in 1521. The Aztec culture has had a great impact on Mexico. Mexico City is full of Aztec ruins, and many Mexican people have Aztec names and traditions.

The National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City is one of the best places to learn about the Aztecs. The museum has a huge collection of Aztec artifacts, as well as exhibits on other indigenous peoples of Mexico.

Tarahumara Runners

The Tarahumara or Raramuri people are an indigenous group of Mexico living in the Sierra Madre Occidental. They’re mostly known for their incredible running abilities, as they commonly use this skill to travel long distances quickly.

In fact, they have been able to run up to 200 miles without rest! The famous book “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall tells the story of these fascinating people and their extraordinary skills.


Ancient Maya Civilization

Mexico is also home to one of the most important ancient civilizations: the Maya. Mexico was part of their territory, which extended from southern Mexico to Honduras and El Salvador.

The Maya were a highly developed culture with their own language, art, architecture, mathematics, and astronomy. Today, Mexico has many impressive archaeological sites that are worth visiting, such as Chichen Itza, Palenque, Tulum, and Uxmal.

Drug Trafficking And Cartels

Mexico unfortunately is also well known for its drug cartels and the dangers that come with them. Although it has been improving in recent years, Mexico still struggles with high levels of drug-related violence.

This has led to many areas of Mexico being unsafe for tourists. However, Mexico City and most major resort areas are not affected by cartel activity and are perfectly safe for visitors. However, make sure to exercise the usual caution against petty crime and always be aware of your surroundings.


Mexican Soap Operas (Telenovelas)

Mexico has a long tradition of soap operas, which have been exported to many countries around the world. These shows are usually very dramatic, over the top, and often include forbidden love stories, kidnappings, and betrayals.

Some of the most popular ones are “La Silla Vacía” (The Empty Chair), “La Rosa de Guadalupe” (The Rose of Guadalupe), “Hasta Que El Dinero Nos Separe” (Until Money Do Us Part), and “Por Amar Sin Ley” (For the Love of Without Law). Mexico is also the country where some of the most popular soap opera stars were born, such as Salma Hayek, Gael Garcia Bernal, and Diego Luna.


The Pueblos Magicos

Mexico has more than 120 “pueblos magicos” (magical towns), which are small settlements with a beautiful historic center that offer a special atmosphere. The idea is to promote Mexico’s cultural heritage and boost tourism in these regions.

Most of the pueblos magicos are located in colonial-style buildings, and you can find them in almost every state of Mexico. However, some of the most popular magical towns that Mexico is famous for include San Miguel de Allende, Tepotzotlán , San Cristóbal de las Casas, Xilitla and more.


Mexican Revolution

Mexico’s Revolution is one of the most relevant events in the country’s history. It all started with the assassination of Francisco Madero, Mexico’s president who fought for democracy against the dictatorship of Porfirio Diaz. This murder was the trigger for a long civil war that lasted almost 10 years and ended with the Constitution of 1917.

Mexico City was the scenario for some of the most important battles, such as Puebla’s 5 de Mayo and Mexico DF’s Tlatelolco student massacre in 1968. Nowadays, Mexico celebrates this event every November 20th, also known as Mexico’s Revolution National Holiday.


Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo is different from the Mexico’s Independence Day, which is celebrated on September 16th. However, the reason Cinco de Mayo has gained so much popularity is because it commemorates the country’s victory over France in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.

This was part of the French-Mexican War between 1861-1867. It’s a rather inspiring underdog story as the smaller Mexican army, led by General Ignacio Zaragoza, managed to defeat the French forces despite being outnumbered and outgunned.

Cinco de Mayo is quite significant in the United States since it’s a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage, particularly for Mexican-American communities. Besides, who would say no to a good fiesta and holiday right?

Due to its prominence, many other countries have also tend to have some form of event surrounding it.


Stunning Beaches

Mexico has some of the best beaches in the world. With over 9,000 kilometers of coastline, there are plenty of beaches to choose from.

Mexico is a country with a coastline on both the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, meaning there are plenty of beaches to enjoy. Cancun and Los Cabos are two of the most popular tourist destinations in Mexico, known for their nightlife and luxury resorts. But if you’re looking for a more authentic Mexico beach experience, head to Puerto Escondido or Todos Santos.



Beaches aren’t the only aquatic Mexico attractions. Mexico is also home to the world’s largest underwater cave system, which is open to scuba divers of all levels.

The cenotes are underground freshwater pools, some of which are natural pits or sinkholes resulting from the collapse of limestone bedrock that exposes groundwater underneath. Mexico has the largest number of cenotes in the world, with over 6,000 registered.

The Yucatan Peninsula is famous for its huge amount of cenotes, and exploring them is one of the most popular things to do in Mexico, especially in the Riviera Maya where you can find amazing cenotes like Grand Cenote, Dos Ojos, Ik Kil, and many more.

Sports and Activities Mexico Is Famous For


Football (fútbol)

Mexico’s national sport is football. It’s the most popular sport in the country, practiced by people of all ages and social backgrounds. Mexico has been world champion twice, in 1970 and 1986. Currently, the Mexican national team is ranked 16th in the FIFA World Rankings. Mexico City’s Aztec Stadium is the largest football stadium in Mexico, with a capacity of over 85,000 spectators.

Lucha Libre

Lucha Libre is Mexico’s version of professional wrestling and it’s one of the most popular sports in the country. The first recorded match took place in 1863, but it wasn’t until 1933 that Lucha Libre reached its peak popularity. Mexico City Arena Coliseo was the main stage for Lucha Libre for many years until it was demolished in 1992.

The “Técnicos” are the good guys who follow the rules, while the “Rudos” are the bad guys who break them. There are also a few variations of Lucha Libre, like “Catch As Catch Can” and “Freestyle”, which include different rules. No matter what variation you see, Lucha Libre is always an entertaining sport to watch.


Surfing Destination

From the iconic white sand and blue waters of Cancun to the secluded beaches of Tulum, there are plenty of options for beach lovers. It comes as no surprise that Mexico is also home to many world-class surf spots, such as Puerto Escondido and Sayulita. Mexico’s Pacific Coast has some of the best conditions for surfing, with warm water and consistent waves.


Diving And Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System

Mexico has the second-largest barrier reef in the world, right after Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. It’s called Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, and it goes from Isla Mujeres (near Cancun) to Honduras.

Mexico is also one of the top diving destinations because of this natural wonder that offers a wide variety of marine species, warm waters all year long, and different levels of difficulty, from beginner to expert. Mexico has everything for the perfect diving experience, whether you’re a certified diver or you just want to try it for the first time with a professional.

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Dance And Music Mexico Is Famous For


Mariachi Bands

Mexico is famous for its Mariachi bands music, which is a type of traditional Mexican folk music. The origins of the Mariachi date back to the 18th century, when it was first developed in the Mexican state of Jalisco. The music eventually spread to other parts of Mexico and became popular throughout the country.

Mexico City even has a square dedicated to this music style. Mariachi Plaza de Mexico is the best place to enjoy a live show and get a taste of Mexico’s folklore. You can hear them playing in the streets, in restaurants, or hired for special events such as weddings.

Danza de los Voladores

Mexico is home to several indigenous groups, and each one of them has its own traditions. The Danza de los Voladores (Dance of the Flyers) is a Mesoamerican ritual that was performed mainly by the Totonac people from Veracruz.

Nowadays, you can witness this performance in many parts of Mexico, but the most impressive one is in Papantla, where five men dressed in traditional Totonac clothing climb a 30-meter pole and fly down gracefully to the ground while playing flutes and drums. It’s believed that this ritual was performed to ask the gods for rain or a good harvest.

Cities And Travel Destinations Mexico Is Famous For


Mexico City

Mexico City is the capital of Mexico and it’s one of the largest and most populous cities in the world. It’s located in the Valley of Mexico, also known as Anáhuac.

Mexico City was originally built by the Aztecs on an island in Lake Texcoco. When the Spaniards arrived, they Mexico City on the ruins of the ancient Mexico-Tenochtitlan.

Mexico City is now a cosmopolitan city with a rich history, culture and gastronomy. It’s also one of the most populous cities in the world, with over 21 million inhabitants. There are many things to see and do in Mexico City, from visiting ancient ruins like the Templo Mayor to strolling around Chapultepec Park or browsing the chic boutiques in Polanco.

One of the top facts about Mexico City is that it is home to some of the best museums in the world. These include the National Museum of Anthropology, the Frida Kahlo Museum, and the Mexico City Museum.



Cancun is one of Mexico’s most popular tourist destinations, located on the Yucatan Peninsula. It’s known for its beautiful beaches, turquoise waters, and lush vegetation.

Cancun is also a great place to learn about Mexico’s ancient Maya civilization, as there are many archaeological sites nearby, such as Chichen Itza, Tulum, and Coba. In addition to its beaches and archaeological sites, Cancun is also home to a variety of hotels, resorts, restaurants, and nightlife options.

However, it can sometimes be touted as too touristic. Some visitors might prefer to head out to nearby islands instead like Isla de Mujeres where there are equally nice beaches.



Oaxaca is a state in Mexico, located in the southwest of the country. It’s one of the most culturally rich states in Mexico, with a great variety of traditions and customs. Oaxaca is also famous for its handicrafts, such as hand-woven textiles, carved wooden animals, and painted ceramics.

The state capital, Oaxaca City, is a beautiful colonial city with a lively culture and gastronomy scene. In addition to its colonial architecture and traditional handicrafts, Oaxaca City is famous for having some of the best museums in Mexico, such as the Rufino Tamayo Museum and the Oaxaca Museum of Culture and Art.

If you’re looking for a Mexico vacation with a difference, Oaxaca is the perfect destination.

Famous Mexican People From Mexico

Frida Kahlo

Mexico’s most famous female artist is Frida Kahlo. Her full name was Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo y Calderón. She was born in Coyoacán, now a borough of Mexico City, on July 6th, 1907.

When she was 18 years old, she had a very serious bus accident that affected her for the rest of her life, both physically and emotionally. Her art is often based on her own pain and suffering, as well as Mexico’s political landscape. You can visit her home turned museum “La Casa Azul” in Coyoacán, which used to be owned by Diego Rivera, her husband.

Guillermo del Toro

Mexico’s very own Guillermo del Toro is one of the most important directors of our time. He was born in Guadalajara, Mexico on October 9th, 1964. Some of his works include Pan’s Labyrinth, The Shape of Water, and Hellboy.

He usually mixes fantasy and horror in his movies, which have earned him at least two Oscars and multiple nominations. He’s also the owner of “La Guadalupana”, a Mexico City restaurant specializing in traditional Mexican food.

Architecture And Landmarks Mexico Is Famous For



Chichen Itza was one of the largest Maya cities and also one of Mexico’s most emblematic archaeological sites. It was built by the ancient Maya civilization around 600 AD, and it has been declared one of the New 7 Wonders of the World.

Every year, on the Spring and Autumnal equinoxes, the light hits the pyramid in such a way that it creates the illusion of a snake going down the stairs. This event attracts a lot of people from all over the world.



Tulum is a pre-Hispanic city that was once the capital of the Maya civilization. It is located on the coast of the Yucatán Peninsula, in the state of Quintana Roo, and it’s one of Mexico’s most popular tourist destinations.

Tulum is home to many archaeological sites, the most famous being the Ruins of Tulum, a walled city that overlooks the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea.

Many More Things Mexico Is Known And Famous For

These are just the surface of things that Mexico is famous for. It is a vast and varied country, with something to offer everyone. Whether you’re looking for beaches, ancient ruins, colonial towns, world-class museums, or nightlife, Mexico has it all.

There are many different regions to explore, and each one has its own unique attractions. Mexico is a country that you could easily spend months or even years exploring, so don’t try to see everything in one trip! You can always revisit to explore all that Mexico is known and famous for.



Book Your Flight

I usually use a combination of 2-3 of the following search engines to find cheap flights: Skyscanner, Momondo, Google Flights

Find Your Accommodation

Booking.com is my usual platform for finding accommodation options as they have one of the largest selections. Hostelworld is great for booking hostels. For more private or long term accommodation, Airbnb is my go-to platform.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is important for to protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances. I usually look at a few insurance companies depending on my travel needs.
  • SafetyWings for Travel Health Insurance
  • IMG Global for added Insurance when doing activities outside of usual coverage
Packing for your trip? Check out the packing list for ideas on what to bring

For more travel resources, check out my resources page for best platforms and companies to use when you travel.

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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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