The Hottest Vacation Spots in Mexico

couple walking on beach
Photo: Getty
  1. Tulum

    Located in the Riviera Maya, this sun-drenched town is known for its Mayan ruins and sandy beaches.

    Where to stay: Try La Zebra Beach Cantina & Cabanas (from $100). It has nine jungle-themed cabanas and salsa lessons on the beachside deck every Sunday.

    Eat here: For authentic Mexican fare, saddle up with a margarita and the catch-of-the-day at the most popular restaurant in Tulum: ¡Que Fresco!, found at Zamas Hotel. If it's Friday night, head to Mezzanine for Thai cuisine and dancing.

    Must-dos: Explore the Mayan ruins of Coba and climb the 138-foot Nohoch Mul pyramid. Kayak or bike through the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve.

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    Photo courtesy of La Zebra Cantina & Cabanas

  2. Punta Mita

    With its proximity to Puerto Vallarta, this emerging town is rich in sand, surf, and swank.

    Where to stay: Almost all of Four Seasons Resort’s airy guest rooms (and 30 suites) offer mountain or ocean views. Spoil yourself with an outdoor massage, play 18 holes at the golf course (it’s on the edge of the Pacific), or relax in marble tubs (from $375).

    Eat here: Like your meals barefoot on the beach? Try Mañanas (329-291-6374).

    Must-dos:Swim with a bottlenose dolphin. Imagine you’re a cowboy and ride on horseback along the 40 miles of coastline to the charming town of Bucerías.

    Photo courtesy of Four Seasons Resort

  3. Guadalajara

    Guadalajara is said to be the birthplace of the mariachi band and tequila!

    Where to stay: Every room at the elegant and charming boutique hotel Quinta Real Guadalajara (from $200) is adorned with Mexican art and colonial furniture.

    Eat here: Dine beneath the stars at La Fonda. Or, for some really fast food, order Carne en Su Jugo, the signature steak soup at Karne Garibaldi.

    Must-dos: Stroll through Parque Agua Azul, Guadalajara’s major 40-acre park. You can even walk through a live butterfly collection. Plaza del Sol is a hub to shop and dine.

    Photo courtesy of Quinta Real Guadalajara

  4. Loreto Bay

    You've gotta see this up-and-coming, relatively inexpensive, and virtually unknown seaside city.

    Where to stay: Set between the Sierra de la Giganta mountains and the Sea of Cortez, all of the rooms at The Inn at Loreto Bay (from $125) have waterfront views.

    Eat here: For an eclectic mix of Italian and Spanish food, try The Roof Garden inside the Posada de las Flores (613-135-1162) or dine atEl Nido Steakhouse.

    Must-dos: Hike or bike up the Sierra de la Giganta mountains for a panoramic view. Rent a two-person kayak, gliding the coast.

    Photo courtesy of The Inn at Loreto Bay