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With more than 123 million people, Mexico is the 11th most populous country in the world. The country is divided into 31 states and the capital of Mexico City. Each one celebrates its own unique culture, cuisine, and landscapes, making it an extraordinarily diverse country.
Mexico is home to an estimated 10% of the world’s biodiversity, making it a wonderful country to join a wildlife tour. Mexico wildlife tours can introduce you to a wonderful array of species including whale sharks, jaguars, primates, ocelots, among many others. The beautiful landscapes from tall mountains to picturesque beaches draw millions of visitors each year. While a popular holiday is Mexico’s All-Inclusive Resorts, adventure tourism and wildlife tours are increasingly sought after.
For Canadians and Americans, the close proximity of Mexico makes it appealing, as well as the affordability once landed.
Found mainly in the Quintana Roo region of Mexico, the Spider Monkey is critically endangered according to the IUCN red list. The Mexican spider monkey is a subspecies of the Geoffroy’s spider monkey, native to Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Nearly 80% of their population has been wiped out, widely impacted by habitat loss.
Best places to visit to see the Mexican spider monkey:
Because they are critically endangered in the wild, we recommend visiting a sanctuary where they are provided with medical care, food, and shelter. The Mexican spider monkey’s habitats have been largely impacted and many have been displaced, which is why they require sanctuaries.
While we don’t have any tours that visit a sanctuary, check out The Jungle Place, a sanctuary located in Quintana Roo.
While many people do not travel often to Mexico looking for jaguars, it is a remarkable destination to catch a glimpse of a jaguar. Travel to the Yucatan or Chiapas and explore the jungle or rainforest where the jaguar calls home. They are not seen often, but it is an impactful moment if you are lucky to see one zip through the trees.
Best places to visit to see jaguars in the wild:
In Chiapas’ Lacandon Rainforest on a guided trek, you may have the chance to see a jaguar. While sightings are not guaranteed, they can happen, especially here. The good news is that the jaguar population in Mexico is on the upswing. Since 2010, the numbers of jaguars has risen 20%, an extraordinary feat.
Considered the gentle giants of the sea, whale sharks are often seen in the Baja California Sur region of Mexico, as well as off the coast of Playa del Carmen. The size of these mammals is incredibly dwarfing as a human, but the majesty of having been in the presence of a whale shark is an unparalleled experience.
Best places to visit to see whale sharks in the wild:
Travel to La Paz in Mexico’s Baja California Sur where you’ll have the chance to see whale sharks in these stunning blue waters. Or, visit Isla Holbox where they can also be seen, along with other wildlife including flamingoes. Known as the ‘Aquarium of the World’, the Sea of Cortez allows travelers access from many points along it’s idyllic Baja Peninsula.
Consider joining RED Travel Mexico in La Paz where you’ll have the chance to be a whale shark researcher for a day. Swim alongside the biggest fish in the sea while learning more about efforts to conserve their populations.
The Cenzontle or Northern mockingbird is the only species of mockingbird found in North America. Found in most states of Mexico, the Cenzontle vocalizes more than 11 different bird species, as well as cats, dogs, crickets, and frogs! They are not considered in danger or vulnerable, and can be seen across most tourist regions in Mexico.
Best places to see a Cenzontle:
Watch for the northern mockingbird in parks, the edges of forests, and tall shrubs or tree branches.
Consider a small group multi-day wildlife tour in Mexico with RED Travel Mexico. You’ll explore various parks with a naturalist guide who can point out mockingbirds or other species along the way!
Sea Turtles (Green, Hawksbill, Loggerhead)
Each year thousands of sea turtles make their way to the coasts of Mexico to build their nests and lay eggs. The experience of seeing sea turtles complete this act is wonderful and can be enjoyed responsibly with a wildlife tour. Depending on the company you choose, you can have fulfilling experiences including working with sea turtle conservation. Whether you choose to observe or participate, one of these tours will be perfect for you!
Best places to visit to see sea turtles:
In Mexico’s Baja California Sur you can have the chance to help with Green Turtle conservation where you’ll participate in studies. You can also visit Mazatlan, Akumal, Oaxaca, Manzanillo, and others.
Join SEE Turtles in Mexico on an Ocean Wildlife Tour that includes camping, kayaking, and a conservation program with Green Sea Turtle conservation.
Located across Central America all the way to Chiapas, Mexico, this stunning bird is a delight for travelers to see. Their colorful feathers are almost iridescent and their green bodies can take on other colors including cobalt, ultramarine, green-gold, and the like. The quetzal’s thick feathers are intended to protect their very thin, delicate skin.
Best places to visit to see resplendent quetzals:
The resplendent quetzal is mostly found in the mountainous cloud forests of southern Mexico.
In the Riviera Maya region of Mexico, travelers may have the opportunity to see the spiny-tailed iguana. These unique-looking iguanas are recognized by their spiny scales, rough textures, and tall dorsal crest. The iguanas prefer rocky terrain with plenty of crevices to claim as their habitats.
Best places to see spiny-tailed iguanas:
In Mexico, the best places to spot a spiny-tailed iguana is near the Tulum ruins near Cancun. This area is known to be a place where these iguanas flourish, however, they are still facing dwindling populations due to illegal trade.
Consider joining a marine conservation program near Playa del Carmen. You’ll come close to the habitats that spiny-tailed iguanas live but can also make a difference with other vulnerable sea coral and sea life in Mexico.