While Mexico, a country in North America is fairly popular and huge, Honduras, a country in Central America, is far off the beaten path and smaller in territory. If the quandary persists to choose between Mexico or Honduras for a vacation, the following considerations will traverse through their destinations, food, culture, accommodation, safety, and overall budget, enabling to decide one better option over the other.

Let's navigate through Mexico first

Pristine Beaches of Mexico

Mexico is notoriously known for running a spectrum of beaches. Be it Cabo San Lucas' El Arco rock formation, one of the most iconic backdrops of Mexico, Playa Delfines and Playa Mujeres, Cancun beaches are known for their powdery sand, clear water, and less busy vibe, remote beaches such as Playa Mayto, Jalisco and Troncones, Guerrero having a laid back vibe, Playa Maroma, Riviera Maya having pearly white sand or Isla Holbox, an island having bohemian vibes. Mexico almost has 500 beaches with the country's periphery surrounding around Pacific Ocean, Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and Sea of Cortez.

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One can dive into adventurous activities such as underwater diving, rappelling, zip-lining, jungle tours and also bask in spas, relaxation activities, and delectable cuisine.

Ancient Ruins of Mexico

Mayan Ruins such as Chichen Itza and Coba in the Yucatan Peninsula, Aztec ruins in Mexico City of Teotihuacan, and Zapotec ruins in Oaxaca reflect the history and heritage of Mexico.

Chichen Itza

An ancient city of Mayan civilization having religious, military, political, and commercial purposes is a UNESCO heritage site. It has a pyramid structure called El Castillo, sacred cenotes with archaeological significance, and several other complexes.

Ruins Of Coba

Located between Tulum and Yucatan Peninsula, Coba is an important ruin site but way different from other Mayan sites. As it's not one single site but a large group of sites connected to the central pyramid. It is best accessed from Riviera Maya through Tulum and is 2 hours away from Cancun.

Monte Albán - Zapotec Ruins in Oaxaca

People have been gaga over Chichen Itza meanwhile Zapotec Ruins have been lost in oblivion. Zapotecs have been the maize farmers and Monte Albán was the capital of Zapotec culture. Mitla has been another important site here and these two marked the beginning of present-day Oaxaca. These intriguing ruins are 20 minutes away from Oaxaca city.

Related: From Mexico City To Temple Ruins: A Complete Itinerary

Food Culture of Mexico

As Mexico had a mix of ethnicities & a vibrant history, its cuisine has been influenced from Aztecs, Mayans, Zapotecs to Europeans. Known peculiarly for their flamboyant use of chilies such as Serrano, Ancho, and Jalapeno, its other staple elements are "Masa", a corn flour used to make tortillas, Quesadillas, Enchiladas, and lots of herbs and spices. Some of the following famous Mexican dishes can be a treat for the taste buds.

Enchiladas

Dating back to Mayan times, this dish is made of flour and corn tortillas filled with meat, cheese, seafood, beans, vegetables, chili sauce, and spices.

Guacamole

Dating back to Aztec times, this delicacy is made from mashed avocados, tomatoes, onions, chili peppers, lemon juice, clove, garlic, and often served with tortilla chips.

Tamales

Be it Aztecs, Mayan, or Inca tribes, tamales are corn dough wrapped in banana leaves or corn husks. Steamed dish with fillings of meats, cheese, fruits, vegetables, chilies, and mole, this is indeed quite nourishing.

Tacos Al Pastor

Harking to the onset of Lebanese and Syrian immigrants, this historic dish is nothing but thin strips of pork served on tortillas laced with pineapple, onions, and coriander.

Chilaquiles

Traditional breakfast of Mexico where tortillas are topped with salsa and scrambled eggs or chicken are added on top. Infused with cheese and cream, it is served with frijoles (refried beans)

Safety in Mexico

Even though Mexico is culturally rich with all eye-boggling destinations, it is still recommended to be careful over here. Tourist spots are quite safe compared to a few other places. People are quite warm and friendly albeit beware of robberies and pickpocketing, especially on public transport.

Coming to Honduras, the following is the vis a vis comparison.

Now, Onto Honduras

Pristine Beaches of Honduras

Hidden Secret of the Caribbean are beaches of Honduras, quite undeveloped, virgin in its essence, and few accessible only by a boat.

The Bay Islands, located off the northern coast of Honduras are composed of 3 main islands: Roatan, Guanaja, and Utila which have been quite popular. Lying around the world's second-largest barrier reef, they are white sand beaches with turquoise water. Prominently known for diving with majestic whale sharks, many activities such as snorkeling, zip-lining, kayaking through mangroves, scuba diving takes place over here. Utila has the best scuba schools and also great spots for diving and hiking. Cayos Cochinos has coral reefs while Water Cag, Utila is known as the whale shark capital of the Caribbean.

Related: Want to Learn to Scuba Dive? Here Are The Best Places For Beginners To Take The Plunge

Ancient Ruins of Honduras

Copan Ruins

Hailing from Maya Civilization and built between 400 AD & 800 AD, it has been one of the spectacular cities for its ancient temples, altars, and hieroglyphs. The entire ruin site entails more than 4500 structures and is a UNESCO heritage site. Discovered in 1570 by Diego Garcia de Palacio, this city had been a political and cultural center.

Food Culture of Honduras

A fusion of Spanish, Caribbean, African, and Mesoamerican cuisine, the staple foods of Honduras are rice, beans, coconut milk, meat, and tortillas.

Baleadas

A classic favorite in Honduras made up of refried beans, mantequilla (a peculiar sour cream), cheese, avocado, scrambled eggs, chorizo on tortillas as a filling.

Plato Tipico

Served usually as a breakfast, it consists of fried eggs, refried beans, corn tortillas, cheese, and fried plantains. Sometimes, it also involves grilled meat, pork sausages, chismol, fried plantain, rice, and stewed beans.

Pupusas

Hailing from El Salvador, this dish is quite famous in Honduras. A flatbread made with cornmeal or rice flour, pupusa has a filling of melted cheese, beans, pork, pickled onions, and spicy coleslaw.

Catrachas

Served as an appetizer or mains, this dish has fried corn tortillas with grated smoked cheese, red beans, hot sauce, avocado, and Honduran crema.

Tapado Olanchano (Stew With Dried Beef)

This rich stew is a common dish during lunch hours consisting of salted beef, smoked pork ribs, plantains, cassava (root vegetable), chicharrón (pork belly), and coconut milk, garlic, onion, cilantro to its broth. Quite rich in flavor, this delicacy originated in the region of Olancho.

Safety In Honduras

The Bay Islands are generally safer than mainland Honduras. It is recommended to visit even popular places such as Roatán with a guide. Hitchhiking should be avoided and vigilance in remote areas is to be taken into consideration. Walking around Tegucigalpa, San Pedro Sula, and cities in mainland Honduras is not advisable. Display of valuable items at bus stations, airports, or isolated beaches should be avoided. Also be particular near borders with Guatemala, Nicaragua, and El Salvador.

While Mexico is quite alluring, Honduras is still not in limelight. Both destinations have a lot to offer with their own pros and cons.

Next: The Complete Guide To Visiting The Most Impressive Mayan Ruins In 5 Countries