Apart from being one of the biggest countries in the world and a tourism hub, Mexico has a lot to offer. From delicious food like TresLeches cake and salsa to their own distinctive music style, this culture-rich country is full of surprises.
Here are some interesting, cool and fun facts about Mexico you’ve probably never heard before.
1. Mexico City Is Slowly Sinking
Mexico City was originally built by the Aztecs over a series of lakebeds. The Aztecs had intricate drainage systems that kept the city afloat, but when Mexico was overtaken by the Spaniards, they weren’t willing to put in the effort required to maintain such an elaborate drainage system and drained the lakes. The soil is sandy in nature and doesn’t support the weight of the city which is steadily sinking every year. If you’re planning on visiting Mexico City before it completely sinks in a few years!
2. Mexico Has 68 Official Languages
Even though Spanish is the most widely spoken language, Mexico itself has 68 officially spoken languages. In fact, there are even more languages spoken by smaller sects which aren’t officially recognized.
3. Mexico Has a State called “I Don’t Understand You”
Yucatan State in Mexico has an interesting name, and by interesting we mean that it translates to “I don’t understand you”. The state was named accidentally. When the Spaniards arrived, they asked the locals what the place was called and thought that Yucatan was the name of the place. Talk about a grave misunderstanding!
4. Mexico Introduced Color TV
Shout out to the Mexicans for blessing the world with color TV! Guillermo Camarena invented the first color transmission system for television all the way back in 1942. Who knows? Without Mexico you might have been watching Netflix in black and white.
5. Mexico lies in the “Ring of Fire”
The Ring of Fire is the term used for the area which is prone to volcanic eruptions and earthquakes and Mexico seems to be situated right at its heart. Imagine a wobbling spoonful of jelly. That’s what happens to the Mexico Valley when it suffers from earthquakes.
6. Mexican Flag has Three Stripes
The flag of Mexico has green, white and red stripes. But what is the meaning of these colors? The green is for hope, the white is for purity and the red is for the blood of Mexicans.
7. Don’t Expect Presents on Christmas Day in Mexico
If you’ve been waiting all year for Christmas presents when you’re in Mexico, you’re about to be sorely disappointed. Mexican kids generally don’t get presents on the Christmas day. Mexicans give presents to their children on the sixth of January, also known as the Three Kings Day. Traditions include huge feasts for the people and feeding grass to animals.
8. Mexico is the World’s Largest Silver Producer
Mexico’s rich resources of silver, iron and other natural resources might be one reason why everyone so desperately wanted to claim the land historically.
Mexico is the largest producer of silver worldwide with a magnificent 5,600 Metric Tons being extracted annually. If you’re in the country, it’s a good idea to buy silver if you’re interested. Not only will you find items at reasonable rates, their designs and variety are also quite incredible.
9. Mexico is Home to the World’s Smallest Volcano
Mexico has the smallest volcano in the world. It’s name is Cuexcomate Volcano and it is located near Puebla city. The size of this cute volcane is just 43 feet of height.
10. Women Played Important Roles in Mexico’s Histroy
Even though women in Mexico weren’t officially allowed to vote till 1958, they played other vital roles. In the 1910 revolution, women served as spies, smugglers and soldiers for the Mexican army.
11. The First Printing Press in North America was used in Mexico
The first printing press in North America was used by a Mexican in 1539 who used it to make books till the day he died. During his time, he was able to make 35 books over a time period of 19 years and his workshop in Mexico is now a museum in his honor.
12. The Aztecs Sacrificed a Group of People Annually
Remember how we mentioned that Mexico had a fascinating history? Well, there was also the occasional display of violence and fascination with death. The Aztecs believed that sacrificing one percent of their population every year was a way to keep their gods happy. That’s around 250,000 people a year!
If you’re not sufficiently freaked out, here are some more gory details on the gruesome sacrifices. Sacrificial humans had their chests split open with a sharp knife with their hearts being pulled out and offered to the gods. In fact, some people believe that the Aztecs engaged in cannibalistic practices and ate the organs of the dead during times of famine.
13. The Aztecs Used to Play a Game called Tlachtli
The violent nature of the Aztecs comes through even in sport. Tlachtli is a ball game that was played by the Aztecs in ancient Mexico, where winning and losing was actually a matter of life or death. Losers were sacrificed to the gods. That’s probably one game where you really don’t want to be at the losing end.
14. Mexico has 59 Different Types of Corn
You may have noticed that corn seems to be a staple in most savory Mexican dishes and it’s no surprise because Mexico has around 59 different types of corn! If you’ve ever had a blue corn tortilla, you should know that the deep blue color of the tortilla shells is natural and not the result of added coloring.
15. Burritos Aren’t as Mexican as you think
Ask the people around you what comes to mind when they think of Mexican cuisine and we guarantee that the majority will mention burritos. In fact, burritos are only truly popular in North Mexico.
And since we’re busting the myths about Mexican food, let’s clear up another misunderstanding. Mexican food may be known for its spice, but it’s actually more sour in nature because of the extensive use of Spanish lemons.
16. Mexicans celebrate the Day of the Dead
People of Mexico believe that on the Day of the Dead, their deceased loved ones’ spirits come down to Earth to enjoy food and festivities with them. It marks the ancient Mexican belief that the spirits of the dead have to go through nine challenges before they can finally “ascend”.
17. Mexicans are the Most Hard-working People in the World!
If you’re feeling tired and lazy, take a leaf out of the Mexicans’ book. The average Mexican works a 43 hour week and a total of around 2,200 hours annually. If you feel like a 40-hour work week is killing you, you probably shouldn’t look for a job in Mexico where some people even have 50-hour work weeks!
18. Mexico has a Place Called Heaven on Earth
Hierve El Agua is place located in Mexico. It literally means “the water boils”. The place features, colorful mineral formations, a stunning waterfall and breathtaking infinity pools. If you get the chance to visit it at sunset, you’ll understand why we’re calling it heaven on Earth.