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The Three Things You Must Do In Veracruz


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Jennie Mullis



Welcome to the vibrant and captivating city of Veracruz, located on the eastern coast of Mexico. With its rich history, stunning natural landscapes, and mouthwatering cuisine, Veracruz offers a one-of-a-kind adventure for travelers. Whether you’re a history buff, nature lover, or food enthusiast, this destination has something to offer for everyone.


Veracruz is known for its role as a significant port city and its historical importance as the entry point for Spanish conquistadors into Mexico. This deep-rooted history is evident in the city’s architecture, museums, and cultural festivities, making it a fascinating place to explore and immerse yourself in the past.


But Veracruz isn’t just a city stuck in the annals of history. It also boasts a stunning coastline along the Gulf of Mexico, offering opportunities for beach lovers and water sports enthusiasts. The region is also blessed with a diverse ecosystem, including lush jungles, cascading waterfalls, and serene mangroves, providing nature lovers with endless exploratory possibilities.


As you venture through Veracruz, be prepared to tantalize your taste buds with its exceptional cuisine. The city is famous for its delicious seafood, thanks to its coastal location. From fresh ceviche to succulent shrimp dishes, Veracruz’s gastronomy is a treat for food lovers.


In this article, we will delve into the three must-do activities in Veracruz. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or a food fanatic, these experiences will ensure that you make the most of your visit to this enchanting destination.


Explore the Historic Zone

Immerse yourself in Veracruz’s rich history by exploring the fascinating Historic Zone. This area is home to numerous architectural gems, museums, and landmarks that provide a glimpse into the past.


Start your exploration at the Zocalo, the main square of Veracruz. Here, you’ll find the iconic Municipal Palace, a stunning architectural masterpiece dating back to the 17th century. Take a moment to admire the colonial-style building and its ornate details before delving further into the Historic Zone.


Next, head to the San Juan de Ulua Fortress, a historic landmark that played a significant role in the Spanish conquest of Mexico. Explore the fort’s intriguing chambers and learn about its intriguing past as a fortress, prison, and military base. The panoramic views from the fortress offer a breathtaking vantage point of the city and the Gulf of Mexico.


Continue your journey through time by visiting the Veracruz Cathedral, an imposing structure that dates back to the 17th century. Admire the cathedral’s impressive architecture and step inside to marvel at its beautiful altars and stained glass windows.


Don’t miss the Naval Museum, located near the Malecon, which showcases the maritime history of Veracruz. Learn about the city’s important role as a port and its connection to trade and exploration. The museum houses an extensive collection of artifacts, including model ships, navigational instruments, and historical documents.


As you wander the charming streets of the Historic Zone, you’ll encounter colorful buildings, bustling markets, and lively plazas. Take the time to soak in the vibrant atmosphere, indulge in some sightseeing, and perhaps even stumble upon a traditional live music performance.


Exploring the Historic Zone of Veracruz is like stepping back in time. The blend of colonial architecture, intriguing museums, and lively streets creates an immersive experience that allows you to connect with the city’s rich history and cultural heritage.


Discover the Natural Beauty

Veracruz is not only steeped in history but also blessed with an abundance of natural beauty. From majestic mountains to pristine beaches, this region offers a diverse array of landscapes that are a paradise for nature lovers.


One of the highlights of Veracruz is the Cofre de Perote, a magnificent volcano that rises to an elevation of over 4,000 meters. Hiking up its slopes rewards you with breathtaking views of the surrounding valleys and the opportunity to explore unique flora and fauna in the high-altitude ecosystem.


For a different natural wonder, head to Los Tuxtlas Biosphere Reserve, a protected area encompassing lush jungles, waterfalls, and stunning coastal scenery. Explore the reserve’s trails, visit the magical Catemaco Lake, and marvel at the diversity of bird species that call this area home.


No visit to Veracruz is complete without a trip to the Cempoala Archaeological Zone. Nestled amidst lush vegetation, this ancient city was once a thriving hub of the Totonac civilization. Explore the well-preserved ruins of temples, ball courts, and pyramids that offer a captivating glimpse into the past.


If you’re seeking a beach getaway, Veracruz won’t disappoint. The region boasts pristine coastal stretches, such as Boca del Rio, where you can enjoy sun-soaked days lounging on the sandy shores, swimming in the crystal-clear waters, or indulging in thrilling water sports like surfing and snorkeling.


For a unique natural phenomenon, visit the El Tajin archaeological site during the equinox. Witness the stunning spectacle as the sun casts shadows on the Pyramid of the Niches, creating an illusion of serpents descending the structure. This ancient ritual is a testament to the deep connection between the Totonac culture and the celestial realm.


In Veracruz, nature is not just limited to the land. Take a boat tour through the mangroves of Tlacotalpan, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and marvel at the intricate ecosystem of these coastal wetlands. Immerse yourself in the tranquil surroundings as you spot native wildlife, including crocodiles, birds, and turtles.


Veracruz’s natural beauty is awe-inspiring, from its towering mountains to its pristine beaches and diverse ecosystems. Exploring these wonders allows you to connect with nature on a profound level and experience the breathtaking beauty that Veracruz has to offer.


Indulge in Local Cuisine

Veracruz is a culinary haven that will delight your taste buds with its flavorful and diverse cuisine. Influenced by its coastal location and indigenous roots, the local dishes in Veracruz are a fusion of Spanish, Afro-Caribbean, and indigenous flavors, creating a unique gastronomic experience.


Start your culinary adventure by trying the iconic Veracruzano style seafood. From savory ceviche to succulent shrimp dishes, the seafood in Veracruz is fresh and bursting with flavor. Be sure to sample the famous Huachinango a la Veracruzana, a red snapper cooked in a flavorful sauce made from tomatoes, olives, capers, and herbs.


Another must-try dish is the Afro-Caribbean influenced mole de Xico. This rich and complex sauce is made from dried chili peppers, spices, chocolate, and various aromatic ingredients. It is typically served over chicken or pork and accompanied by rice and tortillas.


Veracruz is also known for its delicious tamales. These savory corn cakes are filled with a variety of ingredients such as meats, beans, cheese, or vegetables and are wrapped in corn husks or banana leaves. Indulge in the flavors of traditional Veracruzano tamales and discover a true staple of the region’s cuisine.


As you explore the local markets and food stalls, don’t miss the chance to try the famous café de olla. This traditional Veracruzano coffee is brewed with cinnamon and piloncillo, a type of unrefined cane sugar. The result is a rich and aromatic beverage that will awaken your senses and keep you energized throughout the day.


To satisfy your sweet tooth, be sure to try the traditional Veracruzano dessert called leche condensada. This creamy and sweet treat is made by caramelizing condensed milk and can be enjoyed on its own or as a topping for other desserts.


If you’re feeling adventurous, try the local delicacy of chapulines. These toasted grasshoppers seasoned with chili and lime are a popular snack in Veracruz and are surprisingly flavorful and crunchy.


To truly immerse yourself in Veracruz’s culinary culture, consider taking a cooking class or food tour. These experiences offer opportunities to learn the secrets of traditional Veracruzano recipes, interact with local chefs, and savor the authentic flavors of the region.


Veracruz is a gastronomic paradise where the blending of cultures and flavors has created a vibrant food scene. Exploring the local cuisine allows you to discover the unique tastes and culinary traditions that make Veracruz a must-visit destination for food enthusiasts.



Veracruz is a destination that offers a myriad of experiences for travelers. From exploring its rich history in the Historic Zone to immersing yourself in the natural beauty of its landscapes, and indulging in the mouthwatering local cuisine, Veracruz is a captivating place that has something for everyone.


The Historic Zone of Veracruz takes you on a journey through time, with its colonial architecture, iconic landmarks, and fascinating museums. The blend of history and culture creates an enchanting atmosphere that invites you to delve into the city’s past and immerse yourself in its heritage.


For nature lovers, Veracruz’s diverse landscapes provide endless opportunities for exploration. From hiking up volcanoes to discovering hidden waterfalls in lush jungles, and relaxing on pristine beaches along the Gulf of Mexico, the region’s natural beauty will leave you in awe.


No visit to Veracruz is complete without indulging in the local cuisine. The flavors of Veracruzano seafood, traditional tamales, rich mole, and aromatic coffee offer a culinary adventure that will tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving for more.


Whether you’re a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or a food lover, Veracruz promises to fulfill your every desire. With its vibrant culture, welcoming locals, and an array of exciting activities, Veracruz is a destination that will leave a lasting impression and create memories to cherish.


So pack your bags, immerse yourself in the vibrant colors, flavors, and traditions of Veracruz, and let this extraordinary destination take you on a remarkable adventure like no other.