Donna@LoneStar-Travel.com
972-658-6351
LoneStar Travel, travel agent in Frisco Texas

Mexico







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The Riviera Maya of Mexico

Yearning for sun, sand and eye-popping natural beauty? A trip to Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula -- and its crowning resort developments in Cancún and the Riviera Maya -- offers something for just about everyone.
Playa del Carmen prides itself on being the anti-Cancún destination, and it’s true that the Riviera Maya beach town exudes a hipper, more laid-back vibe than gringo-friendly Cancún to the north. But make no mistake: Playa, as locals call it, is big-time touristy all the same. Having said that, the local experience is there for the taking for anyone who’s willing to veer off the beaten path and embrace the Mexican way of life. How do you accomplish that in a city where tourist traps are lurking around every other corner? Here are some tips.
Biking shall set you free
Gone are the days when Playa, once a small fishing village, could easily be covered on foot. At last count the population had surpassed 150,000 inhabitants, making it the Riviera Maya’s largest and fastest-growing city. As a result of the population boom, city limits are constantly expanding and more folks are turning to bicycles as a mode of transport. Bike rental shops are everywhere in town and most charge about US $10 a day, including lock and helmet. To get a look at everyday life in Playa’s residential neighborhoods, simply pedal west beyond Highway 307 or head north of Avenida Constituyentes. If you need a quick snack break you’ll find plenty of enticing ice cream shops around town, or drop by local fave La Floresta (at Highway 307 and Calle 14 Norte), a lunch-only roadside eatery specializing in fish and shrimp tacos.
Divers and snorkelers must -- yes, must -- head to Cozumel. The Palancar Reef is Cozumel's most famous dive -- you'll only see one-third of the wall's amazing sights with one tank. Snorkelers and novice divers should head to the Colombia shallows for great visibility and some of the area's most spectacular coral formations.

Mexico Info

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Most media reports of violence in Mexico fail to mention nearly all of these incidents take place along the border and far away from popular resort areas frequented by U.S. tourists. Mexico is a huge country. Based on geographic size, it’s among the top 15 largest independent nations in the world.
Major resort areas where Americans like to go, such as Cancun, Cozumel, the Riviera Maya and Cabo San Lucas are quite safe. The ongoing drug-related violence is predominantly taking place in the northern Mexican states that border the U.S. and is not targeting U.S. tourists.
USA Today provided some statistical comparisons in the fall of 2014 between Mexico and the U.S.
1. Yucatan, the Gulf of Mexico state known for its beaches and Mayan ruins, had a murder rate of 2 per 100,000 which is comparable to Wyoming and Montana.
2. Washington, D.C.’s murder rate is nearly quadruple that of the Mexican capital. Washington’s murder rate was 31.4 per 100,000 people in 2008; Mexico City’s rate in 2009 was 8.
While the U.S. State Department issued a Travel Warning last year, it is primarily devoted to the violence in communities at or near the U.S. border. The State Department does not explicitly say, do not travel to Mexico. The State Department aptly notes: “Millions of U.S. citizens safely visit Mexico each year. This includes tens of thousands who cross the border every day for study, tourism or business and at least one million U.S. citizens who live in Mexico. The Mexican government makes a considerable effort to protect U.S. citizens and other visitors to major tourist destinations.”
The distance between the U.S./Mexico Border, where much of the violence takes place, and Cancun is over 1,400 miles. That is like the distance from Los Angeles to Dallas!
All travelers, no matter what country they visit, can take precautions to help ensure their safety and well-being. First and foremost: obey the law. If our clients are going to pack one thing, we’d strongly recommend it be common sense. No matter what our clients’ age or destination, they should always use good common sense when it comes to their personal safety, just as they would at home.
To maximize safety and security while traveling in Mexico or any other international destination:
  • Follow your instincts and avoid any areas or situations that seem as though they could become dangerous.
  • Stay in the well-known tourist areas of the cities.
  • Know and respect the laws in the country you are visiting.
  • Visit only legitimate businesses and tourist areas and avoid areas where prostitution and drug dealing might occur.
  • Leave your itinerary with a friend or family member back home.
  • Check with your cell phone provider prior to departure to see if your phone is capable of roaming on GSM or 3G international networks.
  • Do not display expensive looking jewelry, large amounts of money or other valuable items.
  • Make every attempt to travel during daylight hours and stick to main roads.
  • Safety is our top priority for our clients.
Our business is founded on repeat customers. Therefore, we would never send anyone to an unsafe area! We provide the facts so our clients can make informed decisions about their travel plans. We closely monitor the U.S. Department of State Web site for travel alerts for all destinations, including those that are most popular with our clients. Should we become aware of an issue for a specific destination, we alert clients who may be planning to travel there so they can make and determine for themselves if they still wish to travel. We also work closely with respected hotels and resorts to remain informed of security precautions they’re taking to guard our clients’ safety.