Big holes in the sidewalks
Everywhere in Veracruz City, including in the Historic Centre, the sidewalks have huge, deep holes. They are obviously made for the purpose of evacuating torrential rains or waves blowing over the Malecon.
I fell in a smallish but deep hole today and hurt a leg. This happened across the Bulevar where I live, when a cab startled me by honking behind me to know if I needed a ride. I turned quickly while still walking and the left part of me plunged into the hole. I cleaned out the blood on my swelling left leg and put gauze over it etc. I thought that was it. But then, I noticed that my new reading glasses are badly scratched. And finally, hours later, the right side of my body is hurting from the support I got from it and my temples are throbbing from the shock.
So as trivial as this Warning might seem, I think you should be careful where you step here. This applies to everywhere I've been in México to date so I'm putting a similar Warning on my México page.
Avoid the Beaches
It might be a major domestic tourist hub, and it may also be a sunny seaside village, but a word of advice: don't come here expecting to laze on pristine Gulf of Mexico beaches.
Veracruz is also a major shipping port, and with all the shipping traffic, comes heavy pollution. The beaches are an un-natural brown. Avoid them like the plague.
Too many street vendors by your restaurant table
If you eat at an open-air table or open-air restaurant, especially in some of the large plazas, you will be approached one after another after another by street vendors and you have to constantly say "No, Gracias" or something to ward them off in a civil way. It seemed they came by constantly, and you can't even get on with a conversation with whom you're eating. Anyway, something to keep in mind when you're choosing where to eat.
Rush hour and mordidas
You have to be careful about the drivers and police in Veracruz. The town itself was almost like driving in Mexico City, people everywhere and very agressive. Also watch out for the police and mordidas. A mordida is a bribe that the police try to extract from you by pulling your car over for some dumb violation of the traffic laws. They usually start out high, but you can get them down to a reasonable level. I don't mind paying it out when it's low because I know in the long run it will help the guys family out since they live on such a little salary anyway. I just think of it as my informal contribution to help out Mexican society!
- Book now for big savings!
- Hotels.com Outstanding choice of hotels all over the world at fantastic prices.
- Book online.
- Hotels.com See maps & reviews for over 140,000 Hotels worldwide!