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A unique blend of European and indigenous American cultures, product of a fateful confrontation five centuries ago, modern Mexico welcomes travelers with astounding beauty, deeply rooted culture and warm hospitality. Its landscapes always amaze, from the austere cactus-studded deserts of the north to the snow-capped central volcanoes or palm-lined Pacific and Caribbean sands washed by turquoise seas. The excitement of its cities rarely stales, whether you're experiencing the seething megalopolis that is Mexico City, the stately beauties of colonial Oaxaca, Guanajuato or Zacatecas or the beachside hedonism of Cancún, Puerto Vallarta ...

A unique blend of European and indigenous American cultures, product of a fateful confrontation five centuries ago, modern Mexico welcomes travelers with astounding beauty, deeply rooted culture and warm hospitality. Its landscapes always amaze, from the austere cactus-studded deserts of the north to the snow-capped central volcanoes or palm-lined Pacific and Caribbean sands washed by turquoise seas. The excitement of its cities rarely stales, whether you're experiencing the seething megalopolis that is Mexico City, the stately beauties of colonial Oaxaca, Guanajuato or Zacatecas or the beachside hedonism of Cancún, Puerto Vallarta and Acapulco. Mexico's savage yet artistically inspired ancient cultures - the Maya, the Aztecs, the Olmecs and countless others - bequeathed one of the world's great archaeological legacies, from the giant pyramids of Teotihuacán to the sublime temples of jungle-shrouded Palenque. The mestizo (mixed) culture that resulted from those cultures' union with their Spanish conquerors' yields food, art and festivities of unique flavors and colors. Whether you're looking for fun in the sun on the beach, or planning an in-depth investigation of archaeology and architecture, Mexico is unlikely to fail you.

John Noble
About the Expert

John Noble is a coauthor of Lonely Planet's Spain, Andalucia, and Mexico as well as many other LP titles from Indonesia to Belize to Brazil.

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