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Mexico is full of surprises. There’s the food (imagine having burritos on your wedding night), the relative affordability (¡olé!), the sun, sea and rump-shaking after-hours parties (double olé), and the very real chance of having one of the most off-the-hook bachelor parties ever. Better yet, because it’s a destination wedding, the invite list can be cut in half, the drink budget can be doubled, and the honeymoon… well, that’s included. Sure, there’s Cancún, Puerto Vallarta, and Baja, but these off-the-chart locations are well worth the look.
Way south on the Pacific Coast, the village of Puerto Escondido is one of the coolest places you’ll ever visit in your lifetime. There’s awesome surf, plenty of laid-back vacation rentals and boutique resorts and some of the best food the entire coast has to offer. Puerto Escondido was developed primarily by Italians, so you have a great mix of Italian and continental food offerings, plus local glances into Oaxacan cooking—that’s right, you get to try chile-crusted chapulines (grasshoppers) and drink the worm at the bottom of a bottle of fiery mescal.
Most of our offbeat recommendations sit on the coast. But we brought this Chiapas charmer into the fold because it’s just totally badass. The preserved colonial town is as romantic as you can get with cobblestone streets, towering churches, and a unique indigenous cultural imprint not seen in other parts of Mexico. The food is amazing, the hotels are cheap and you have a wonderworld of waterfalls, rainforest and offbeat indigenous villages at your doorstep. Your styled look for most of Mexico should trend toward casual chic.
A few hours south of Cancún, Tulum has everything a destination wedding requires. The boutique hotels and vacation rentals are small enough to accommodate a party of 20 or 30, there are closeby Mayan ruins for your wedding shot. Plus, the water here is as heaven-blue delicious as you could ever want. Not far enough? Cruise even further south to Mahahual and Laguna Bacalar for remote locales on the border of paradise. We recommend this part of Mexico for scuba and snorkeling enthusiasts.
As big Mexico resort towns go, Puerto Vallarta is pretty sweet. The old town is charming, the beach is glorious, and generally speaking, the hotels are a little cheaper than in other parts of the country. It’s also a great spot for gay weddings. This said, go just 20 minutes north of here to the little village of Sayulita for a hidden-away beach wedding par excellence. Sayulita is mainly known as a surfer spot, but beyond the fish taco stands and brohemes, there’s a number of high-quality boutiques and plenty of opportunities to customize your wedding.
Rastas, gurus and the rare-but-ever-beautiful rasta-guru-in-a-tutu are the mainstays of this throwback hippie village. The beach here is gorgeous. People still run around naked (like Lord of the Flies but without the Conch) and there’s good surf. Lodging could be a challenge (as could naked rasta-gurus photo-bombing your wedding pic), but if you want an Age of Aquarius wedding with tacos and tequila, this may just be your spot.