best places to live in mexico
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9 Best Places to Live in Mexico (2023)

Mexico truly is one of the best places in the world to live. From its diverse culture to its breathtaking landscapes, there is something for everyone here.

The people are friendly, the cost of living is affordable, and of course, the food is incredible – but you knew all of that already.

The real question is, now that you’ve made the decision to move to Mexico, where are you going to live? There are so many options, it can be overwhelming.

best places to live in mexico playa del carmen

That’s why I’ve put together this list of the 9 best places to live in Mexico (based on my own research and personal experience).

Whether you’re looking for big-city excitement or beautiful Caribbean beach life, there’s something for everyone here.

Check out our extensive list below and find the perfect spot for your new life in Mexico!

Best Places to Live in Mexico

From the beaches of Playa del Carmen to the cobbled streets of San Miguel de Allende; here are the best places to live in Mexico.

playa del carmen beach

1. Playa del Carmen

If you’re looking for a place that has it all – beaches, nightlife, shopping, and more – then you should definitely consider Playa del Carmen as your new home in Mexico.

One of the first things you’ll notice when you arrive in Playa del Carmen is the friendly vibe. Everyone from shopkeepers to waiters to taxi drivers will go out of their way to make you feel welcome. It’s one of the things that makes Playa del Carmen such a great place to live. 

In terms of nightlife and entertainment, Playa del Carmen has plenty to offer. Fifth Avenue is the main drag and it’s lined with bars, clubs, and restaurants.

There’s something for everyone here, whether you’re looking for a quiet cocktail bar, cheap street tacos or a lively club where you can dance the night away. 

playa del carmen 5th avenue shopping

If shopping is more your thing, then you’ll be happy to know that Playa del Carmen is home to some fantastic boutiques and shops. Again, Fifth Avenue is the best place to start your shopping spree but be sure to venture off the beaten path too so you don’t miss any hidden gems! 

And last but not least, let’s not forget about the beaches. After all, this is Mexico we’re talking about!

The beaches in Playa del Carmen are absolutely stunning and there’s something for everyone here too. If you’re looking for a party scene, then head to Mamitas Beach Club. But if you’d prefer somewhere a little more low-key, then try out one of the many smaller beaches dotting the coastline.

Regardless of which beach you choose, you’re guaranteed to have an incredible time under the Mexican sun. 

Pros and Cons of Living in Playa Del Carmen

tulum beach shot

2. Tulum

Tulum is a small hippy-chic town located on the Caribbean coast of the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico.

In recent years, it has become increasingly popular with digital nomads, expats, and retirees from all over the world. But what’s so great about Tulum

Tulum is known for its stunning Caribbean beaches and laid-back, hippy vibe. The turquoise water and soft, white sand make for a perfect day of relaxing by the beach.

In addition to the gorgeous setting, Tulum also offers a unique atmosphere compared to other Caribbean destinations. Many shops and restaurants have an eco-friendly focus, and there’s a strong emphasis on wellness and spirituality.

It’s not uncommon to see yoga classes or meditation sessions taking place on the beach or in open-air studios.

READ MORE: How to Get to Tulum

tulum smoothie bar

One of the things that makes Tulum such a great place to live is the fact that it’s relatively safe. There’s very little crime, and you can feel comfortable walking around town, even at night.

The town has a laid-back, relaxed vibe, and everyone seems to know each other. It’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life.

The cost of living in Tulum is also very reasonable. Rent and groceries are relatively cheap, and there are plenty of affordable restaurants and bars, in Tulum town.

The weather in Tulum is another huge selling point. It’s warm year-round, with an average temperature of 28 degrees Celsius (82 degrees Fahrenheit). And because it’s located on the coast, there’s always a pleasant breeze blowing through town.

Check out our Tulum Digital Nomad Guide

READ MORE: Where Exactly is Tulum?

puerto escondido beach

3. Puerto Escondido

Puerto Escondido is well-known for its surfing beaches and laid-back vibe. While it’s already a popular tourist destination, it’s also a great place to live – and here’s why!

Puerto Escondido has one of the best climates in Mexico. it’s warm and sunny year-round, with an average temperature of 26 degrees Celsius. And even though it’s located on the coast, it rarely gets too hot or humid.

If you’re looking for a place to escape the cold winters, Puerto Escondido is definitely worth considering!

Even though Puerto Escondido is becoming increasingly popular with tourists, it’s still relatively affordable to live here. Rent and groceries are both fairly cheap, and you can get by on around $1,500 USD per month if you’re careful with your budget.

Compared to other places in Mexico (and around the world), Puerto Escondido is definitely a bargain!

puerto escondido volleyball

One of the best things about Puerto Escondido is the friendly and welcoming locals. The people here are warm and hospitable, and they’ll make you feel right at home.

Even if you don’t speak Spanish fluently, you’ll find that most people here are happy to help out with translations or any other assistance you might need.

Puerto Escondidians are also very proud of their culture and heritage, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to learn about the history and traditions of this Mexican town.

puerto vallarta malecon

4. Puerto Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta has something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for a quiet beach town to retire in or a bustling city with plenty of things to do, Puerto Vallarta has you covered.

It’s widely known as a common tourist destination because of its beautiful beaches, great weather, and vibrant nightlife, but Puerto Vallarta is also an excellent place to live

One of the biggest reasons people choose to retire or live in Puerto Vallarta is because it’s more affordable than living in the United States or Europe.

The cost of rent, food, and utilities are all much lower than what you would find in other developed countries. And although the cost of living has been on the rise in recent years, it’s still relatively affordable compared to other places in the world.

Moving To Puerto Vallarta – Our Guide

puerto vallarta beach

Puerto Vallarta is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in Mexico. With over 200 miles of coastline, there are plenty of beach towns to explore. Each town has its own unique vibe and personality. You can find everything from lively party beaches to secluded stretches of sand where you can relax and enjoy the scenery.

Puerto Vallarta is also known for its year-round sunshine and warm weather. The average temperature is around 85 degrees Fahrenheit (29 degrees Celsius), with very little variation throughout the year.

Puerto Vallarta also has a rich culture that stems from its history as a fishing village. Over the years, it has evolved into a thriving tourist destination while still maintaining its small-town charm.

From its affordable cost of living and beautiful beaches to its rich culture and friendly people, there are plenty of reasons to consider Puerto Vallarta as your next home.

You may also want to check out the beautiful nearby beach spot of Sayulita, which makes for a great weekend escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

READ MORE: How to Get To Sayulita

best places to live in mexico mexico city

5. Mexico City

With its rich culture, vibrant nightlife, and opportunities for exploration, it’s no wonder that Mexico City is one of the most popular places to live in Mexico.

But what really sets Mexico City apart from other cities in the country?

One of the biggest advantages of living in Mexico City is the affordability. Compared to other major cities around the world, the cost of living in Mexico City is very reasonable. In fact, it’s been ranked as one of the most affordable cities to live in globally! 

Another big factor that makes Mexico City a great place to live is safety. Although there is always crime in any large city, Mexico City has made great strides in reducing crime rates in recent years.

best places to live in mexico mexico city

The city has implemented various initiatives such as increasing police presence and installing surveillance cameras throughout the city. These measures have resulted in a significant decrease in crime rates, making Mexico City one of the safest cities to live in Latin America!

Finally, another reason why so many people love living in Mexico City is the culture and history.

The city is home to some of the most impressive museums and historical sites in Latin America.

There is always something new to see and do in Mexico City! 

Moving To Mexico City Guide

oaxaca city streets

6. Oaxaca

With its colonial buildings, lively markets and abundance of culture, it’s no wonder Oaxaca City is regularly referred to as “the best city to live in Mexico”. 

One of the reasons why Oaxaca is such a great place to live is because of its abundant culture and history.

The city was founded by the Spanish in 1529 and since then has been a melting pot of indigenous and European influences. This is reflected in the city’s architecture, with its colonial buildings and colorful houses. You can also see this blend of cultures in the traditional food – a mix of Zapotec, Mixtec and Spanish cuisine.  

In addition to being rich in culture, Oaxaca City is also a great place to live because there are plenty of things to do. There are museums, art galleries, theaters and parks, as well as many festivals throughout the year.

day of the dead oaxaca

One of the most popular festivals is Day of the Dead, when locals decorate their houses with skulls and eat traditional foods like mole negro (a type of sauce made with chocolate) and pan de muerto (a sweet bread). 

Oaxaca City is cheaper than Mexico City – but still has all the amenities you need. 

If you’re looking for a big-city feel without having to pay big-city prices, then Oaxaca City is the place for you. It’s cheaper than Mexico City but still has all the amenities you need, including hospitals, schools, universities, restaurants and supermarkets.

And if you’re looking to learn Spanish or improve your Spanish skills, there are many language schools in Oaxaca City that offer classes for all levels!

san miguel de allende

7. San Miguel de Allende

San Miguel de Allende is an incredibly beautiful colonial city located in central Mexico, but what makes it such a great place to live?

For starters, it’s a historic city with a rich culture and plenty of things to do. There’s also a growing expat community, which means you’ll never feel alone in your new home.

And, of course, let’s not forget the beautiful weather! Average temperatures in San Miguel de Allende stay between 70 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit throughout the year, making it the perfect place to escape the cold winters of North America.

san miguel de allende sunseet

When it comes to cost of living, San Miguel de Allende is very affordable. Renting an apartment in this Mexican city will only set you back around $400 USD per month. And, if you’re looking to buy property, you can find a decent-sized home for under $100,000 USD.

Compare that to prices in major North American cities and it’s easy to see why so many people are making the move to San Miguel de Allende.

Mexico has a reputation for being dangerous, but that simply isn’t the case in cities like San Miguel de Allende. In fact, this city was named the “Safest Place in Mexico” and “Best Small City in the World” by Forbes.

So, if you’re worried about crime, you can rest assured knowing that San Miguel de Allende is a safe and secure place to live.

merida mexico

8. Merida

Merida may be slightly more unknown than the rest of the places on the list, but it is truly one of the best places in Mexico to live.

One of the things that makes Merida so appealing is its low cost of living. In fact, it’s often ranked as one of the most affordable cities in Mexico.

Rent is cheap, groceries are inexpensive, and you can get by on very little money each month. Additionally, there are plenty of free or low-cost activities and attractions – you’ll never find yourself bored or broke in Merida. 

churros in merida

Another big selling point of Merida is its safety. The city has a very low crime rate and is generally considered to be very safe, even for solo travelers and women traveling alone.

This is in contrast to other cities in Mexico, which can be quite dangerous. So if you’re looking for a place to live where you can feel safe and secure, Merida is definitely worth considering. 

But what really sets Merida apart from other cities in Mexico is its people. The locals here are incredibly friendly and welcoming, and they’re always happy to help out visitors or newcomers to the city.

You’ll quickly feel like part of the community here, which makes settling into your new life much easier. 

cabo san lucas mexico

9. Cabo San Lucas

Cabo San Lucas offers the best of both worlds when it comes to Mexican city living.

It’s a small city, so it’s not as chaotic as some of the larger cities like Mexico City or Guadalajara. But it’s also big enough that there’s always something to do.

You’ll never find yourself bored here, perhaps that’s why so many Americans are choosing to move to Cabo San Lucas!

The city is located on the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, so you’ll be able to enjoy plenty of sunny days by the beach. But it’s also close to major tourist attractions like Cabo Pulmo National Park and the Sierra de la Laguna Biosphere Reserve.

cabo san lucas beaches

Cabo San Lucas is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in Mexico. With crystal clear water and white sand beaches, it’s no wonder why Cabo is such a popular tourist destination. But when you live here, you get to enjoy these beaches all year round!

There’s also a vibrant nightlife scene. There are tons of bars and clubs to choose from, so you’ll never be bored. And since Cabo San Lucas is such a popular tourist destination, there’s always something new and exciting happening. 

Our Cabo San Lucas Guide

mexican food

The Best Places to Move To in Mexico

So there you have it – this is my list of the 9 best places to live in Mexico.

Of course, this is just a starting point, and everyone’s needs will be different. But I hope this gives you a good idea of the many wonderful options available here.

As a quick recap, here are our top picks for the 9 best places to live in Mexico:

If you’re still trying to decide where to move, let us know in the comments below. We’d love to help you find the perfect spot for your new life in Mexico!

READ MORE: Best Countries To Live and Work Online

One Comment


    Hi Jordan,

    Can you recommend a local LONG-TERM rental agent in Cabo San Lucas who doesn’t rip off retirees with GringoPricing policies? I am having trouble finding such online. In return, let me know how I can help you. Warmest regards, Les Simmons

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