Today, Mexico is the fifth largest country in the Western Hemisphere
and is rich in natural resources such as petroleum and natural gas.
Tourism is important.
Near the Mayan ruin of Chichen Itza is Cancun -- is one of
the top beach destinations in the world. Nearby, the island of Cozumel
is a world-famous scuba diving and snorkeling spot.
The nation's capital, Mexico City,
is one of the largest cities in the world. In Latin America, only
Brazil has a larger population than
Mexico is bordered by the United States on
the north, the Pacific Ocean on the west, the Gulf of Mexico and
the Caribbean Sea on the east . Guatemala and Belize are to
Mexico is crossed by two major mountain chains, the Sierra Madre
Occidental and the Sierra Madre Oriental. The high central plateau
between these two mountain ranges is where many
traveled toward the center of this region.
Mexico features volcanic peaks, snow-capped mountains, tropical
rain forests, and internationally famous beaches including CANCUN
with its famous row of hotels on a beach of crystal blue ocean..
showing glamorous Cancun hotels right on the beach in the background
Mexico City is an enormous metropolitan area and
dominates the rest of the country's culture, economy, and politics.
Nearly one-fifth of the nation's population lives in the immediate
vicinity of the capital.
a rich heritage in art and architecture and is recognized internationally for
the contributions of its 20th-century mural artists, who created murals that
reflected Mexico's history and culture and current social issues.
The history of Mexico revolves around the mixing of numerous cultural, ethnic,
and political influences. These include contributions from several major indigenous
civilizations, Spanish influences from the period of colonial rule, and a significant
African heritage resulting from the slave trade of the early colonial era.
Mexico is a mountainous country with a large central
plateau and relatively small amounts of naturally fertile land.
Much of the country has limited rainfall.
Earthquakes are fairly common in the capital city.
The Yucatán Peninsula extends northeast
from the Isthmus of Tehuantepec into the Gulf of Mexico. It is
a flat, low-lying region without rivers. The northwestern peninsula
is dry and supports some agriculture; further south rainfall is
plentiful and the peninsula is covered by tropical rain forests.
The important international tourist center of Cancún is located along
the eastern coast of the Yucatán.
South and east of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, bordering
Guatemala, are the Chiapas Highlands. Much of this region gets
heavy rainfall and is covered by tropical forests. Some mountains
in the Chiapas Highlands rise to more than 9,000 feet
In the far northwest of the country is the Baja California
Peninsula. Stretching from the U.S. border southeast for 800
miles, the peninsula is extremely dry and mountainous, with a very
narrow coastal plain. It is largely unpopulated, but has become increasingly
attractive to U.S. tourists who visit coastal resorts along the northern
Gulf of California and on the Pacific Ocean. At the end is Los Cabos,
well known as a tourist attraction.
For more on Los Cabos, visit mexico-guides.com
Plant and Animal Life
Much of northern Mexico is covered by desert vegetation,
including mesquite, cactus, desert scrub, and some grasses. The
higher regions are forested largely with hardwoods such as oak,
and needle-leafed trees such as pine and fir.
Some of the animals found in Central and South
Americasuch as monkeys, tapirs, and jaguarsremain in parts of southern
Mexico. Bear, deer, coyote, peccary, and mountain lion, many
species of which you can see in American zoos, remain in the rugged,
mountainous regions of the Sierra Madre. Environmental groups have
tried to protect Mexico's endangered species, particularly marine
turtles, from further exploitation and decline .