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In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 3rd decade of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

Must See Places in Mexico

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli

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map of Mexico

Visit these must-see places in Mexico

Mexico is a huge country and it's hard to know where to go if you only have a limited time to visit this nation. Some people prefer the beaches, some might want to take advantage of the culture, history and international restaurants, and others could consider emigrating to spend their retirement years there. Below are must-see towns and cities along with useful notes to help you get an idea of what Mexico offers.

Chapala, Mexico - Church and Braniff building

Beautiful, easy-going Chapala, Mexico

Chapala, Mexico, located in central Mexico, has the largest expat community in the world and offers lots of activities to keep one busy. If you like to play tennis, golf, bridge or get involved in garden clubs, animal rescue or theater, this lovely town with year-round spring climate is a good bet. Chapala's location, just 30 minutes from Guadalajara's international airport and an hour from the capitol city itself, is a good home base to travel to the beach, to the mountains, or to the States or Canada.

Cons - Because Chapala is such a pleasant town with lots to do and great weather, it is definitely getting overrun with Expats and is losing some of its innocence and true Mexican culture. Traffic congestion is a problem during the snowbird season and prices continue to rise. Still, it is a great value compared to the States. For the most part there aren't problems with drugs or the darkness it attracts, but there have been altercations between the police and gang members in recent years.

Santo Domingo Church in Oaxaca, Mexico

Historical and clean Oaxaca, Mexico

Oaxaca, Mexico, located in southwestern Mexico, is a beautiful colonial city with picturesque architecture. The colorful indigenous add zest to the ordinary walk through town. Offering food specialties like mole and locally made chocolate, Oaxaca - as a living cultural center with lots of museums, free concerts and cultural events - also has an international feel. The Zocalo Plaza is one of the finest in Mexico, and there is a large variety of restaurants to choose from, city markets, and famous churches. For a day trip you are close to the Maya ruins of Monte Alban, and you can visit the largest tree in the world there.

 

 

 

 

Cons - There aren't many cons about Oaxaca, although it has a cooler climate overall than the Lake Chapala area and prices are slightly higher. It's more populated, larger and is definitely a city - which some would not take as a negative feature at all.

Caleta de Campos Beach, Mexico

Calm, sweet, undeveloped Caleta de Campos

If you like beaches, here are two completely different styles of beach from which to choose. Caleta de Campos, located in the Mexican state of Michoacan, is an undeveloped beach town where if you would like to be involved with the locals and eat fresh grilled fish and shrimp at a palapa shack on the beach, this is the place. The horseshoe beach is wide and gorgeous. Completely non-touristy, you won't be annoyed with the sounds of jet skis or bothered with vendors begging you to buy.

Zicatela beach, Mexico

Stunning Zicatela Beach

Zicatela, Puerto Escondido, located in southwestern Mexico, is an old fishing village transformed into a surfer's paradise. Choose to board surf or body surf, there are lots of little coves to escape from the tourist crowds. You can enjoy delicious fresh seafood beachside and watch the sun set. Zicatela is becoming more developed every time we visit, but it has a cutesy, arty feel to it. The larger city of Puerto Escondido is walking distance away offering larger shops, pharmacies, and open markets.

Cons - Both beaches are hot and humid in the summer which can be unbearable. On the one hand, Caleta is wonderfully undeveloped, but one could feel isolated, especially if you don't speak Spanish, and services are limited. For the conveniences of banking and medical, one must travel 40 miles away to Lazaro Cardenas, which could get old after a while. Zicatela is a hopping place with lots of action and a focus on being hip. It is close to Puerto Escondido, but that city is not nearly as colorful or intriguing and there is city traffic.

The Golden Triangle of Tequila-making, Mexico Highlands

The Golden Triangle of Tequila-making, Mexico Highlands

In the Mexico Highlands you'll find some of the most beautiful cities, towns and countrysides with the best weather in Mexico. Clean air, beautiful mountains, "Eternal Spring" climate, family-centered towns, and home to the Golden Triangle of Tequila-making.

The Highlands cities of Atontonilco el Alto, Jesus Maria and Arandas are the homes of the best tequila-making distilleries in the world.

Arrange for private tours at distilleries such as El Pandio, Siete Leguas, La Altena, Don Julio and more. If you don’t think you like tequila or know nothing about it, this area and the tours you take will change your mind forever about Mexico’s National Drink.

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Cons: One cannot visit this area in a few days. Prepare to spend at least a week or two to fully enjoy the tours (which must be booked online or by phone) and have a day or two off between tastings. Be prepared to purchase some of these tequilas to take home, as you might not find them on your home country’s liquor shelves.

Downtown Morelia, Michoacan, Mexico

Downtown Morelia, Michoacan, Mexico

Morelia, is a fine Colonial City in Central Mexico with one of the most beautiful Cathedrals in the nation, and an alleyway made specifically for romance! Engrave your lover's name and yours on a lock and seal your love forever!

An aristocratic and sophisticated metropolis, spend time at any of their many rooftop bars and international restaurants, or enjoy a group tandem bicycle trip through town. At night, the Cathedral and Plaza light up. Great for photography, and for a large city, the residents seemed very friendly.

Cons: Well, Morelia is a city after all, and for those who enjoy tiny Mexican or indigenous towns, this buzzing and clean city might not appeal. However, city folks will love it.

piteado belts, Jerez, Mexico

As Mexican as you can get, Jerez, Mexico

Some say Jerez is the most Mexican town in all of Mexico and is an hour away from Zacatecas. This easy-to-navigate town has lots of shops, and offers clean, simple living that is family oriented and traditional. Everyone seems friendly in that small-town-sort-of-way and locals are eager to make conversation and engage with strangers. Streets are walkable and not steep like either Zacatecas or Guanajuato, with shops and grocery stores easily accessible on foot or by bus.

Cons - There are no great ruins, no international cuisine and if small town charm doesn't do it for you, you will be bored within minutes. There are cultural events, theater and music, but there isn't a heavy emphasis on this side of life.

Hip, happening, artistic Guanajuato

Guanajuato is another World Heritage site and is a photographer’s paradise. This city is cosmopolitan and offers a full variety of restaurants, entertainment, fabulous scenery and culture. Guanajuato teems with vitality, history and the influence from the students of the University. Every turn of the corner offers you a photographic opportunity and is a goldmine for sketching or watercolor topics. Pricing for lodging and food is available in all ranges and transport to, from and around the city is easy. Lots of free theater and concerts.

 

 

 

 

Cons - Guanajuato is also located in the highlands of Mexico and can be cold in the mornings and evenings. Altitude may pose a problem and streets are steep and winding.

Bicycle race Merida, Yucatan, Mexico

Tropical and historic Merida

Many people love Merida which is located on the Yucatan Peninsula. It has the region's best museums and is only 22 miles to the Gulf of Mexico Coast. There are lots of affordable places to eat and thriving markets. If you want to see the pyramids of Chichen Itza, you can come and go in one day if you would like. The Maya ruins of Tulum are reachable in a day but seeing them is not a day trip. There is gorgeous Colonial architecture, sweet barrio churches, wide boulevards and a very active main Plaza with mimes, shops and entertainment. Upscale hotels, restaurants and outdoor cafes can entertain you for hours.

Expats who live here enjoy the historical culture and social activities. Merida also boasts of many regional hospitals and medical centers offering full services for the city, the whole Yucatan Peninsula and for neighboring states.

Cons - Hot and congested with belching traffic, Merida is a city of almost a million inhabitants and has humid, tropical climate.

From stunning beaches, to highland mountain towns, cultural World Heritage sites to local small-town charm, Mexico offers something for everyone.

 

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Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance, medical tourism and world travel. With the wealth of information they share on their award winning website RetireEarlyLifestyle.com, they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since 1991. They wrote the popular books, The Adventurer’s Guide to Early Retirement and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible available on their website bookstore or on Amazon.com.

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