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6 Myths Foreigners Get Wrong About Mexico

by Monica Castro May 9, 2016

1. Mexicans eat tacos all the time.

Yes, we love them, but we also have a rich and colorful variety of foods depending on what zone of our country you’re in. Like mole, (a sauce of peppers and chocolate which we love to pour over chicken and rice), chiles rellenos (big peppers that are not very spicy, but filled up with cheese or meat), barbacoa (roasted lamb), cochinita (traditional pork where the meat is marinated in strongly acidic citrus juice, seasoning it with “achiote” annatto seed which imparts a vivid burnt orange color, and roasting the meat while it’s wrapped in banana leaf).

2. “Tex-Mex” is just like Mexican food.

When I was working as an au pair in Germany I found it pretty offensive that the man of the house asked me if I knew how to make beef chili. I clarified that this was a dish from Texas not Mexico.

And, it’s important to say that taco shells do not exist here, toasted tortillas are that, toasted tortillas not bended and we call them tostadas.

3. Mexico City isn’t a legitimate city.

Most foreign people don’t know that Mexico City hosts more people with 8.84 million people (versus the 8.24 million people who live in New York). You can find any kind of environment you want here: Coyoacan is perfect for hipsters or La Condesa will be your perfect choice if you’re looking for a nice restaurant.

4. Mexican men are “machos.”

The stereotype goes that all our men have moustaches and treat us women with disrespect. And we all fall for their charming, macho attitude.

I have never had a boyfriend with a moustache and none of my friends will pay attention to a guy with a macho attitude. The truth is that you can find gentlemen here just as in any other country.

5. We only listen to Ranchera and folk music.

We enjoy Taylor Swift as much as anyone else. In Mexico City, you can always find big pop and rock artists performing a show like Katy Perry, Maroon 5, Garbage, and more, and all in fully crowded stadiums.

6. Every area of Mexico is dangerous.

Certainly we cannot deny the wave of crime hitting this country because of drug cartels. But travelers often don’t understand that this only happens in certain zones in the north of Mexico, especially on the border. Mexico is very big, and it’s easy to visit and not have violence affect your trip.

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