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Finding a home

Mexico, or the United Mexican States, is a federation of 31 sovereign states, each with its own cultural identity, traditions and geographical flavour.

When considering any move to Mexico, it is therefore important to do some focused research into the area you wish to live in.  

While many U.S. citizens move to Mexico in order to enjoy their retirement in the country’s beautiful climate, most expatriates will relocate for the purposes of work, and so it is worth noting that the following areas are associated with certain industries:

  • Puebla City – where most of the automotive industry in Mexico is located. General Motors, Chrysler, Daimler, Ford, Volkswagen, Nissan and Mazda all have manufacturing plants there.
  • Guadalajara – the electronics manufacturing centre of Mexico. It plays host to multinational companies such as KodakHewlett-Packard, and IBM.
  • Villahermosa – a city on the Gulf of Mexico coast; 90% of the gas and almost all of the oil extracted in Mexico moves through here.
  • Mexico City – the country’s capital where the major financial institutions and embassies are headquartered.

Your research into different locations should also cover what the geography and climate are like and what the main points of interest are. As a starting point, below is a brief overview of some of the major cities associated with professional expatriates working in Mexico.

Puebla City

Located in east-central Mexico, Puebla City is surrounded on four sides by mountains that form part of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. It’s home to more than two and a half million people and benefits from magnificent views of the snow-capped peaks of the Popocatépetl (“the smoking mountain”) and Iztaccíhuatl (“white woman”) volcanoes.

Puebla City (or more specifically the Historic Centre of Puebla) was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 with almost 2,600 buildings in the city of Baroque, Renaissance and Classic design being individually listed. Cultural treasures include:

Puebla Cathedral – a magnificent Roman Catholic cathedral of late Baroque design, dedicated to the Immaculate Conception. Construction began in 1575 and was completed in 1690.

Palafoxiana Library – founded in 1646 and completed in 1773, this was the first public library in colonial Mexico and was listed in 2005 in UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register.

Church of Santo Domingo – a former Dominican monastery completed in 1611 and home to the ornately sculptured Baroque Capilla del Rosario (the Rosary Chapel), which was completed in 1690 and is entirely covered in gold leaf to stunning effect.

Average highest daytime temperatures in Puebla City range from 28ºC (82.4ºF) in the hottest months to 23ºC (73.4ºF) in the winter.  

Average annual rainfall in Puebla City is around 970 millimetres, with the majority of rainfall occurring between June and September, when the monthly average rainfall is around 181 millimetres.  

Puebla City benefits from an annual average of 2,910 sunshine hours, the sunniest months falling between November and May, when the average number of sunshine hours is around 265 per month.  

Guadalajara

Located in west-central Mexico, and home to a population of one and a half million inhabitants, Guadalajara has been nicknamed both the “Mexican Silicon Valley”, on account of its burgeoning technology industry and the “Pearl of the West”, due to its importance as a centre of culture.

Guadalajara’s cultural offerings are many and varied. These include:

  • Opportunities for learning offered by its six universities and two culinary institutes.
  • A multitude of musical, poetic, theatrical and art events held each year, highlights of which include concerts by the Jalisco Philharmonic Orchestra, the International Film Festival, which takes place in March, the Festival Cultural de Mayo (the May Cultural Festival) and the Guadalajara International Book Fair. 
  • Many wonderful examples of Neoclassical, Baroque, Art Deco and Neo-Gothic colonial architecture evident in the city. 

Average highest daytime temperatures in Guadalajara range from 32.5ºC (90.5ºF) in the hottest months to 24.7ºC (76.5ºF) in the winter.

Average annual rainfall in Guadalajara is around 1,000 millimetres, with the majority of rainfall occurring between June and September, when the monthly average rainfall is around 215 millimetres.

Guadalajara benefits from an annual average of 2,670 sunshine hours, the sunniest months falling between February and May, when the average number of sunshine hours is around 260 per month.  

Villahermosa

Located in the south-eastern part of Mexico in the state of Tabasco, on the banks of the Grijalva River, Villahermosa is a small, prosperous and vibrant city nicknamed the “Emerald of the Southeast”. Home to around 650,000 people, it’s well placed to access the many cultural opportunities offered by wider Tabasco, specifically the ancient archaeological remains of the once-vast Mayan culture.

·Villahermosa offers plenty of cultural, historical and natural sites both within the boundary of the city itself, and also within easy travelling distance. Within the city, the most famous cultural sites include:

  • Casa de los Azulejos (“House of Tiles”), which combines Gothic and Moorish architectural styles to stunning effect, and is now home to the Tabasco History Museum. 
  • Parque-Museo La Venta, which showcases some of the most important artefacts recovered from the La Venta Archaeological Site (located a few kilometres outside Villahermosa, and now only containing fibreglass copies of the original artefacts).
  • Museo Regional de Antropología Carlos Pellicer Cámara, which houses more than 770 exhibits from the Olmec, Mayan, Zapotec, Tlatilco, Huastec and Aztec/Mixtec cultures.

Further afield are such attractions as:

  • Villa Luz Ecological Reserve and Tomas Garrido House Museum. 
  • Coconá Caves Natural Monument. 
  • Comalcalco (“House of Frying Pans”) archaeological site – one of the most important ancient Mayan cities, uniquely built in clay rather than stone. 
  • Hacienda de la Luz – a fifty hectare farm, which provides the ubiquitous Route of Sacred Cacao tours.

Average highest daytime temperatures in Villahermosa range from 35.1ºC (95.2ºF) in the hottest months to 27.9ºC (82.2ºF) in the winter.

Average annual rainfall in Villahermosa is around 1,960 millimetres, with the majority of rainfall occurring September and October, when the monthly average rainfall is around 314 millimetres.

Villahermosa benefits from an annual average of 2,440 sunshine hours, the sunniest months falling between March and August, when the average number of sunshine hours is around 243 per month.  

Mexico City

Located in the Valley of Mexico, high in the plateaus of the south-central Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt, Mexico City is the capital of Mexico and home to a population of around nine million people.

Both the Centro Histórico and the “floating gardens” of Xochimilco are designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, with the city boasting a huge array of cultural and historical treasures, including:

Templo Mayor – an excavated Aztec temple complex in the centre of the city.

Catedral Metropolitana de la Asunción de la Santísima Virgen María a los Cielos  – a magnificent Baroque Roman Catholic cathedral built in sections from 1573 to 1813 on an area considered sacred to the Aztecs close to the Templo Mayor.

Palacio Nacional – the palace is located in the city’s main square and is home to stunning murals by the celebrated artist Diego Rivera, depicting Mexican history from Aztec times to the post-revolution era.

Average highest daytime temperatures in Mexico City range from 20ºC (68ºF) in the hottest months to 25ºC (77ºF) in the winter.

Average annual rainfall in Mexico City is around 380 millimetres, with the majority of rainfall occurring between June and September, when the monthly average rainfall is around 57 millimetres.

Mexico City benefits from an annual average of 2,613 sunshine hours, the sunniest months falling between November and April, when the average number of sunshine hours is around 246 per month.

Settling into a new town in a new country is always an exciting but daunting prospect. Making sure you’re in a good place for excellent transport links, hospitals and schools means you need to do your research first. Take the worry out of health care cover by talking to one of our friendly expert sales consultants today. We can help make sure you get the cover you need for you and your family.

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