Situated on the Gulf of Mexico, Galveston is a relaxed beach town with a rich history. Magnificent homes on Broadway, many now museums, recall Galveston's era of wealth and prosperity in the late 1800s, and The Strand entices visitors with its restaurants, bars, galleries, and stores housed in picturesque Victorian-era buildings. La King's Confectionery, a 1920s-style ice cream parlor and candy shop, also awaits. Pier 21 is a jumping-off point for boat excursions, dolphin-spotting cruises, and the adrenaline-pumping Jet Boat Thrill Ride. At the Texas Seaport Museum, you might search for ancestors in its database, which contains the names of about 130,000 immigrants who entered the U.S. at Galveston from 1846 to 1948 or climb aboard its 1877 tall ship Elissa. Other top sites include the family-friendly amusement park at Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier and Moody Gardens, with aquarium and rainforest attractions, a private beach, ropes course and more.
Currency: US dollar (US$)
Just off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula sits Cozumel, a tropical oasis in the Caribbean Sea. The island often is considered one of the world's best snorkeling and scuba diving spots due to its clear, warm water, dazzling coral reef and an abundance of marine life. Popular Palancar Reef delights divers with its swim-through tunnels and caves, and beginners can encounter eels and rays at Paradise Reef. Additional shore excursions include Jet boat tours, fishing trips and expeditions that explore the island's cenotes and Mayan ruins by Jeep, horseback, or electric bike. Tequila and salsa tastings embrace local culture, and Chankanaab Adventure Beach Park thrills with ziplines, glass-bottom kayaks and a crocodile exhibition.
Currency: Mexican Peso (MXN), US Dollar (US$)