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Mexico Geographical Information

The Mexican peninsula lies at the southern extremity of North America. Its neighbour in the North is the US, while Guatemala and Belize make up the Southern border. The land is washed by the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea in the east, and the Pacific in the west.

The disparity of Mexican landscapes and climates is unique and unparalleled elsewhere. This is a remarkable feature, considering the startlingly short distance between magnificent snow-capped volcanoes and rolling plateaus. While cities like the capital, Mexico City, are teeming with millions, there are parts of the rugged landscape that remain unexplored on foot.

About 60% of the landmass is the central plateau or “mesa central.” The Sierra Madre Oriental mountain ranges border the plateau on the east, and the Sierra Madre Occidental hugs it on the west.

A chain of tall volcanic mountains extends east-west across southern Mexico, south of Mexico City. These include awesome volcanoes with tongue twisting names such as Popocatepetl, Nevado de Roluca, Orizaba, Cofre de Perote, Metlalcueyetl and Ixtaccihuatl. An impressive crest of mountains is formed by lower chains of mountains that extend northwestward from each end of the volcanic chains. The central landmass of North Mexico is a high plateau rimmed by these mountain ranges.

Splendid beaches and tangled forests dot the 6000 miles of coastline. The Gulf Coastal Plain and the Yucatan Peninsula on the east, are crowned by tall canopies of the tropical rain forests. This tree canopy is so dense that sunlight rarely reaches the forest floor. In the South, the pacific Coast is rugged with dense forests. The Baja California Peninsula in the northwest is mainly desert sprinkled with intermittent mountains.

The forests, mountains and deserts of Mexico are home to some of the most magnificent varieties of birds and animals. Exotic birds inhabit the forests – from the brilliantly hued quetzals, to flamingos, hummingbirds, herons, parrots and pelicans.

The coastal waters, lakes and rivers are swarming with exotic varieties of fish and shellfish. The coral reefs along the Caribbean Coast are animated by tropical marine life. Marlin, swordfish and tarpon are big game off the coast.

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