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Mexican Cities/American Cities

The Working Gringos have been traveling in the Estados Unidos for the last week, taking care of family and other business. We are poised on the border, getting ready to cross back into Mexico tomorrow morning.

As we sit here, balanced between two homelands, we have been playing this game of comparing places in the U.S. with places in Mexico. Here’s our first take on a list of Mexican cities as compared to American cities. Join us and play along!!

Morelia is to Mexico as Boston is to the United States

Merida is the New Orleans of Mexico

Monterrey is the Chicago of Mexico

Guadalajara is the Los Angeles of Mexico

Mexico City is, of course, the New York City AND Washington DC of Mexico combined

Cancun is the Las Vegas of Mexico

Puerto Vallarta is the San Diego of Mexico

Veracruz is the Houston of Mexico

Guanajuato is the Boulder of Mexico….?

Villahermosa is the Jersey City of Mexico

Tulum is the Big Sur California of Mexico

San Miguel Allende is the Aspen of Mexico

Tijuana is Tijuana :-) for both Mexico and the United States.

Isn’t this fun???

Here’s a few we’ve had a hard time with:

San Cristobal in Chiapas….? We can’t think of a correlation in the United States.
Maybe Portland Oregon?? San Francisco California?? The Appalachians?

Mazatlan? Queretero? San Luis Potosi??

Help us out here. What do you think?

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25 Responses to “Mexican Cities/American Cities”

  1. Cancun is more like the Miami of Mexico. Acapulco is the Honolulu. Queretaro is the Richmond VA. Mazatlan is the Tampa FL. Can anyone think of San Luis Potosi? Great job gringos. Hi from the US Guadalajara.

  2. i think it’ll be something like walla,walla in washington because of the rivers and the indians (reservations),or maybe i am confused i havent been in san cristobal in years,but how about spokane???,no i don’t think so,mmmm dang,let me see if i can find my brains i think i left them in the fridge just to keep them cool!!!!!,hehehehe,i’ll think about it see if i can remember a city i’ve been staying for a while and make the correlation, ok? have fun guys in the border!!!!!!

  3. I am a TexMex who lived in Merida Yuc. august 2003 – October 2005. My wife, Ariadna works at La Museo de La Ciudad in Centro. She is still there, while I am back here in Texas. Mexico is too hard for the handicapp and only getting $781.00 a month in disability. I visited Monterrey in 2000. Merida is better. I really loved Campeche alot. If I was young, healthy, and had money, I would live in Campeche.

  4. Queretero like Cincinnati

  5. THANKS, everyone!!! this is great! keep ‘em coming!

    We’re in Torreon tonite…any ideas???

    It reminds the Working Gringo of Fresno, CA!

  6. Maybe this is too obvious… but I think of Oaxaca as the Santa Fe of Mexico… or better put, Santa Fe as the Oaxaca of the US.

  7. great idea guys!

    how about – Cozumel is the Key West of Mexico

    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

    (ps if you could see your way to including a plug for my little “mexicana building” blog it would be very much appreciated!)

  8. you’re doing a fantastic job! it’s more difficult than i thought it would be. i’m still thinking about queretaro, and guessing that the richmond comparison is a good one. what i will say is that san miguel de allende seems more like santa fe than aspen. :)
    torreon…perhaps along the lines of pittsburgh…

  9. I think Juarez is the Jersey City. The view across the river is similar to the not so lovely view on your way to Newark Airport from Manhattan. Of course Copper Canyon is the Grand Canyon. Chihuahua city is the El Paso. Oh and how about Sayulito like Santa Barbara, CA

  10. Torreon = Pittsburgh!! Perfect!!

    I see we have two conflicting votes for Santa Fe…both Oaxaca City and San Miguel Allende. I haven’t been to Oaxaca. Could one of them perhaps be Taos??

    Is there no Aspen of Mexico then?

    Juarez as Jersey City…yes, I think that fits! And I haven’t been to Sayulito but if its like Santa Barbara, now I’m sure I’d like to go there.

    We were just in Patzcuaro and we were thinking perhaps it is the Woodstock, NY of Mexico. The climate and the sophisticated small-town feel…what do you think?

    And how about Puebla? (We’re in Puebla tonite, on our way back to the Yucatan) Maybe its the San Jose of Mexico?

    Oh, and we totally agree: Cancun is the Miami of Mexico. There is nothing else like Las Vegas, is there? It’s pretty uniquely American…

  11. The only one I can think of that hasn’t been mentioned is Loreto, Baja = Los Osos, California … talk about obscure ;)

  12. Hi from the US Villahermosa! Well, actually ’bout 20 miles west of Jersey City. I’ve never been to Villahermosa, but as someone who lived in JC for 4 years all I can say is ew.

    Villahermosa sure is a nice name for a place with no grass or trees, lots of poverty and a couple nice streets! :) That’s what JC is, that with a view (if you hang your head way out the bathroom window and look right you can see the radio tower on top of the empire state building… that ups the rent by at least $400/mo.) hee hee hee. I NJ!

  13. Wow…Working Gringo grew up in Los Osos, CA but the WGs haven’t been to Baja yet. Something to look forward to!

    As for Villahermosa, it has more than a few trees, but basically you pegged it! The rents are probably cheaper though.

    We thought of another one today as we were driving home: Campeche is the St. Augustine, Florida of Mexico. Another obscure one!

  14. Xalapa as the San Francisco….yes, even though it isn’t on a bay! Its beautiful, hilly, foggy, cool, funky and very high brow with it’s great university, museum and cultural events.

    Sounds like you’re almost home now…welcome back!

  15. We’ve been to Xalapa…I think you might be right!

    We arrived back in the Yucatan late last night. It’s good to be home, thank you!

    More Yucatan Living coming up soon!!

  16. San Cristobal is definitely the Appalachians, not the San Francisco/Portland: quaint, time-worn, surrounded by desperate poverty.

  17. San Cristobal is a piece of cake…it’s Gatlinberg, Tennessee. You even have the Indian Reservation nearby where you can go see the natives doing what they used to do (except in Chiapas the natives don’t go home to their pcs, dvds and microwaves at 5 pm).

  18. I’m just wondering why Merida=New Orleans. What are the similarities?

  19. Somewhere we have seen that Merida and New Orleans are actually official “sister” cities. Similarities that come to mind are:

    -they share the same climate
    -they both hold big Carnaval/Mardi Gras celebrations
    -they both have French-influenced architecture and culture
    -they both are cultural centers for their part of the world, with unique cultural influences (Maya for Merida, Creole for New Orleans)

    Can anyone suggest other similarities?

  20. Torreón: Pueblo, CO

  21. Mmmm I am wondering what Mexican city would match for Marfa, Texas…

    Greetings to everybody!

  22. RE: New Orleans and Merida…my wife and I lived in New Orleans, Louisiana, for 21 years prior to Hurricane katrina; we loved it intensely (the architecture, food, music, warmth of the people, carnival, the sheer visual beauty and sensual richness) and for all these reasons never intended to live anywhere else.

    Then…we were wiped out by Katrina, and relocated to a middle class suburb in Michigan (where my wife is from.) We have a nice house in an interesting older town (by U.S. standards!) good friends and family, and we absolutely love the long, cool summers when the northern sun doesn’t completely set until almost 11:00 p.m. For all those reasons, we intend to make our lives here–for part of each year–for the rest of our lives.

    However, with all its plusses, where we are now lacks some important elements which make life worth living, and they all boil down to qualities of passion, excitement, sensuality and waking up each day knowing that you are likely to be both surprised by something unexpected and charmed by the people and poetic beauty of the place where you live. We miss all that and want to bring it back into our lives, but, for us, for a variety of reasons New Orleans is no longer an option.

    Recently we visted Merida, where friends from New Orleans relocated after the storm, and we both felt as if we had come home to a place we had never before even seen. The similarities between Merida and pre-Katrina New Orleans are uncanny, almost as if they are manifestations of the same place but in parallel universes. Substitute Mayan influence for Afro-Caribbean, change English to Spanish, and the two are almost identical, with a few important exceptions; Merida feels safer, and at least in the time we were there we never witnessed the out-of-control public behavior which is all too common in New Orleans. But…in both places people are friendly and warm, there is an ever present sense of life-as-celebration (music, art, dancing, carnival) and in both places the entire environment is a complex stimulation of the senses of the sort we currently miss so much. So…we will eventually be back, if only for part of the year each year, because the positives that Merida offers feed our souls, much in the way that New Orleans once did.

  23. My first impression
    of st. Luis Potosi was Pittsburgh, Very industrialized not much social life.

  24. I was in a car accident 3 years ago that left me paralyzed and I live off of my disability. I am looking for a city in Mexico where my dollar will last long and I feel safe in the city. Anybody has any suggestion would be welcomed.


  25. Villahermosa is called in a fun way “the two lies city”, because is neither a “Villa” (a Small town) nor “Hermosa” (Pretty, beauty).

    Villahermosa translated to English means, “the beauty small town”

    This is my first comment here (april 16, 2008)

    BTW – I live in Mérida, and this is a great website.


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