When it comes to Mexico, I had very little exposure before our cruise. I was at Cozumel with an excursion but never saw or experienced any of it outside the snorkel park. And With not having a good experience in Mexicali on the border of California and Mexico. I wasn't sure I wanted to go there, this was the only cruise that matched out time, length,& ship so even though it wasn't my first, second or third choice it was the choice that fit.
My dad retired to Mexico for a time, and he kept telling me that the experience I had wasn't the actual Mexican experience. I still wasn't convinced.
Mexico is full of history, culture, flavors that make your mouth water. Being on a cruise ship and only seeing each port for a day limits you to all Mexico has to offer. But it whets your appetite. I learned that the Mexican people are very friendly, I never got harassed on the street for money as I have heard, maybe there are places this is more common however I didn't experience it on my trip. I felt very safe, walking around Cabo, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta. We somehow found our way around without knowing any, but I sure wish I did. Someone was always around who knew English and was happy to help. Many tours will show you the culture by bus, jeep, walking, just to name a few. And if you want a beach day, Mexico has that too.
As your cruising down the coast of Mexico, the landscape changes. Cabo San Lucas is desserty with rocky terrain. In Mazatlan, you start getting into seeing trees and greenery. Some people don't get off the ship in Mazatlan cause the city has noticeable graffiti, and it is more urban. Peurto Vallarta was our favorite, and If we were to go to Mexico on holiday, we would go there in a heartbeat. It is getting into more jungle greenery. You have the combination of beach, city, country, village, and jungle all within a very short distance. We managed to drive a Jeep around with no accidents and being in a tour group with a leader and 5 Jeeps made it hard to get lost. I am now a lover of Mexico and would jump at the chance to go back.