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Is it safe to travel to Mexico alone, as a solo female traveler? The quick answer is “yes,” but it always depends on the area you visit and on your taking certain general precautions, as you would when visiting most places.
I know that we all keep seeing “travel warnings” about Mexico online and in the news, but there is a reason why many people that visit Mexico keep returning several times, to different locations, year after year. Many are charmed by the amazing vibe Mexico emanates for fun and frivolity, some people love the beautiful views, others the culture and history, the number of amazing activities and sites to see, not to mention the food!
I’m definitely one of those people who completely fell in love with the country. I lived there as a student for nearly a year and returned many times to see even more of this amazing country. Every time you visit, you can find something new to do in Mexico! Also, it’s hard not to fall in love, more and more, with the people, the culture, the traditions and, of course, Mexican food. Mexico just has it all!
Here is a guide to Solo Female Travel in Mexico, highlighting all you need to know before you visit Mexico.
Table of Contents (skip directly to the info you're looking for)
- 1 Best Time to Visit Mexico
- 2 Mexico is a Massive Country – Don’t try to cover too much Ground!
- 3 There are some Amazing Activities and things to do in Mexico
- 4 Safety in Mexico: Is it safe to travel to Mexico alone as a female?
- 5 How to Travel Around Mexico as a Solo Female Traveler
- 6 Where to go in Mexico: Best places in Mexico to travel alone
Best Time to Visit Mexico
The best time to visit Mexico is between December and April which is the dry season – when there is little to no rain. However, as it is peak tourist season, it may be busier at some of the more popular attractions, such as Chichen Itza. The rainy season lasts from May through to October, so if you wanted to visit when it is a little quieter, and you don’t mind the wet weather, you could go at the beginning or nearing the end of their rainy season.
Regardless of when you visit, prepare to have a wonderful time!
Mexico is a Massive Country – Don’t try to cover too much Ground!
Many people do not realize that Mexico is a very big country even if it doesn’t look so big on a map. Unless you have a lot of time, don’t think you can see it all in one trip – this is another reason why many choose to return. Mexico has a lot of interesting traditions, delicious food, wonderful beaches, super-friendly people, lots of history everywhere…it is really hard not to like it! Also, Mexico can suit the tastes of different kinds of travelers: From those looking for a bit of adventure, for the perfect couple’s getaway, a romantic destination wedding or honeymoon, a bachelorette party, to a solo travel experience, to backpacking, to those choosing Mexico as a destination for a holiday full of relaxation and luxury, whatever you’re looking for, try to narrow down what you want to do on this trip and then go for it!
Recommended: 15 Fun activities to do in Cancun, Mexico!
There are some Amazing Activities and things to do in Mexico
In Mexico you can dive in the world’s second largest barrier reef. If you’re passionate about history, you can walk around ancient Mayan and Aztecan sites. You can dive into the beautiful cenotes – those blue holes of underground water so common around the Yucatan Peninsula and considered sacred by the Mayans.
Mexico is a lot more than the usual stereotypes we often hear about the country. There are many destinations that are still not as popular among tourists which will give you a taste of the “real Mexico” – Puebla’s state is very rich in terms of activities you can do – it has the largest pyramid in the world, two active volcanoes that you can climb, and a food culture different from anywhere else around the country. Here you can read more about Puebla Travel.
Later on in this post, I’m going to be outlining more amazing destinations in Mexico for you to visit. But before we rush into this, let’s take a look at safety tips for solo female travelers and the best ways to get around.
Safety in Mexico: Is it safe to travel to Mexico alone as a female?
Unfortunately, the media and the news can portray a negative view of Mexico. The images that often come to mind when thinking about Mexico include violence, drug cartels and narcos. Of course, as a country, it’s not without its problems… but most countries have something or other. And if we took every story to heart, nobody would want to leave the safety of their own homes.
But as a tourist or a visitor, worrying about safety shouldn’t be more important than when you are going to visit any other part of the world. Remember to keep your belongings close – don’t lay your mobile phone down on cafe tables and keep your money out of sight. Avoid getting drunk and walking home alone, and definitely do not decide to go anywhere that appears isolated, especially at odd hours of the day or night.
I would also suggest that you share your itinerary with close friends and/or family members; it is good to let people know when you are going and where. It is good to research the areas where you are planning to book your stay. In order to stay connected, consider getting a sim card and/or buying a portable wifi device. It might come in very handy if you need information or assistance quickly. Personally, I use the international portable wifi device, Tep Wireless.
As in any other country, there are always areas that should be avoided, always keep yourself informed and ask the staff at your accommodation. Basically, the better your research, the better your experience!
Note: To safeguard your stomach, do not drink anything but bottled water. In fact, use bottled water to brush your teeth and definitely avoid drinks with ice. Montezuma’s revenge is real!
How to Travel Around Mexico as a Solo Female Traveler
Public transportation is not very reliable in Mexico. The smaller buses called “camiones” or “combis” are the cheapest way to travel, but they usually make many stops and are pretty uncomfortable, since the drivers pack the bus with as many people aa can fit in in order to earn as much as possible.
There are however many private bus companies which organize long-destination trips, connecting the biggest cities and the most popular destinations, without stops – a “directo” – more of direct, non-stop travel option. The most reliable companies are: ADO, Estrella Roja and Primera Plus.
If you’re short on time but still want to visit multiple destinations in Mexico, you should consider taking local flights between locations. The low cost companies are VivaAerobus, Volaris and Interjet, while VivaAeromexico is the biggest airline, so usually a little more expensive. You can check the companies’ website for special offers and book your flights directly.
You might also like: A solo road trip adventure from Chiapas, Mexico to Antigua, Guatemala
Unfortunately, it is not easy to travel by train in Mexico – but there are few passenger rail networks in the country if you happen to be near a station.
Another option is to book a tour that covers one place or or several parts of Mexico. Then, the tour company will arrange all of the transportation and what a great way to meet new friends and learn more about what you are seeing at each location from the local professionals!
Accommodation in Mexico
In terms of infrastructure, Mexico has a lot of options for different budgets. Apart from many great hostels to chose from, you can opt for AirBnB if you are on a budget. But hostels are a great way to meet people when you are traveling solo. Some of my best travel friends have been made from sharing hostel dorms! Of course, there are also plenty of luxury resorts and charming boutique hotels all around the country. Something for everyone!
If you don’t know any Spanish, and you’re willing to visit more than the resort area, it is recommended to at least learn some basic Spanish; just a few simple phases can go a long way! In places like Cancún, or other popular touristic places, you’ll see many speak some English. But when visiting smaller cities, going to street food stands and/or bus stations, you may find it difficult to find someone who speaks or understands English. But is there a better incentive for learning another language?! Locals would really appreciate your efforts and repay it with friendliness.
Where to go in Mexico: Best places in Mexico to travel alone
Depending on your interests and how many days you have at your disposal, there are certain destinations you should consider for your trip to Mexico. You can decide to go for the Riviera Maya, which is easily reached by flying directly into Cancun International Airport. Tulum, Bacalar and Isla Holbox are stops you should definitely review for your itinerary! They are real paradises.
Another favorite: The largest spa in the Caribbean found in Riviera Maya!
If you’re into adventure and ruins, I highly recommend that you visit Chiapas. Again, not many have heard of this state but you can see wonderful Mayan ruins immersed in the jungle, waterfalls and pretty colonials towns, like San Cristobal de las Casas.
Visiting Mexico City is also something you might enjoy, especially since this Mexican capital has the highest number of museums in the world, many bars and restaurants and hip-style food markets. From Mexico City, you can also enjoy a day trip to the ancient ruins of the city of Theotihuacan, one of the biggest cities in the world during its golden era.
Oaxaca is a gem of a city, with nice architecture and amazing culture. From there you can easily visit lesser-known, but beautiful, beaches and/or go hiking in the surrounding nature. If you are looking to catch some waves, Puerto Escondido is the best choice for surfers.
Baja California had been popular among surfers for many years and, aside from that, you can still find beaches that are mostly unknown to the masses of tourists going to Cancun or Playa del Carmen. The landscape, a unique mixture of desert and beach, between enormous cacti and the beautiful shades of the blue of the ocean, it is perfect for a road trip!
Guanajuato City is a beautiful and charming city in Central Mexico. It’s known for its silver mining history and amazing colonial architecture. It is also considered one of the most stunning places in Mexico, so you will definitely enjoy how picturesque this city is, not to mention the cool vibes.
San Miguel de Allende
San Miguel de Allende is a colonial-era city in the central highlands of Mexico, located in the far eastern part of Guanajuato state. It is known for its impressive baroque Spanish architecture, its art scenes, and tons of cultural festivals.
These are just some of the best destinations to visit in Mexico, especially if you are traveling alone. We have no doubt that you can arrange an amazing get away no matter what your taste or preference. Hope that you feel inspired and prepared to get started!
Have you ever visited Mexico? What was your experience like? Any cities we must add to our list?
This is a guest post by Anastasia Malavolti, contributing writer from Templeseeker.com
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