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Posted by MXHerper on January 24, 2003 at 15:04:03:
In Reply to: Re: Mexico posted by chrish on January 24, 2003 at 00:45:37:
:And I have found that the people of Mexico are friendly and welcoming and go out of their way to help you, even if you don't speak their language!
I've found that once you get away from the border towns, the Mexican people are some of the nicest, hardest working people I've ever met. They are very patient with tourists, more so outside of the larger cities in the more rural areas.
:There are unsafe places in Mexico. We modified our last trip to Chiapas because there had been some trouble near the towns of Bonampak and Ocosingo. We saw no sign of it from Palenque, where we were.
:We also changed our itinerary about going onto the Oaxaca/Tuxtepec road and from going to the Sierra just southeast of Chilpancingo, Gro. We made these decisions by doing some online research at various state department (US and other country) web sites and reading travel warnings. There is good information out there.
Mexico in general is a very safe country. The problems can arise when you go exploring in the "real" backcountry. The desert areas and coastal areas are very safe. The places that require extra care and attention are in the Sierras where there are numerous tropical and subtropical valleys and canyons. It's these remote areas where the vast majority of drugs are being grown. It's quite possible to be hiking in these areas and enter a small canyon only to find a small corn patch with marijuana plants growing within it. I've met a lot of locals in these areas and although they have almost always been friendly I get looked at much more and I've been given some warings about certain places to avoid. I've also been escorted through some areas by locals I've met in order to avoid possible problems.
:The crime rate in Mexico is lower than that in the US. I'm not telling everyone to jump in their cars, but you don't have to be afraid to go there.
Hopefully I didn't scare anyone off. Mexico is a great country. I wish more people went herping there, it's a great experience. Just do a lot of research on the area you'd like to visit before you go and you will have a far more successful, more enjoyed, and problem free trip.