Top 10 Weird Facts About Mexico: eating, time, nature & money (+ FREE Audio)


I’m really sure that en tu propio pais (in your own country), there are many things that foreigners find weird or they just never knew about. It’s the same with Mexico, but maybe todavía puedo sorprenderte (I can still surprise you) with these 10 weird facts about Mexico!

Learn the fun facts about Mexico whether we talk about eating, time, nature or money.

1. An eating fun fact about Mexico: we like eating bugs

Just like in The Lion King, insects are edible in Mexico and they represent an encounter with the pre-Hispanic era, where they took the best ingredients from nature to prepare delicious dishes.

There are around 500 edible species, many of which are used for medical purposes. However, some are very popular as a taco’s filling.

For example:

  • el gusano de maguey (Maguey worm), which is salty and crunchy when chewed, with a flavor similar to that of mezcal on the palate.
  • la hormiga Chicantana (Chicantana ant), and even though its capture is not easy, it’s very popular and it could be used in sauces, tamales, broth, stew, and cookies.
  • el chapulín (a type of cricket), which is perfect as a snack and may be accompanied by a kind of powder chili, or in delicious dishes totally gourmet.
female teacher explaining the different sauces that can be eaten with Chicantana ant

Would you eat any of these dishes? Let me know in the video’s comments!

2. Interesting fact about Mexico’s taco: we know how to detect a taco that is serving real meat

There is a saying in Mexico that goes: if there’s a dog around a taco stand, then you are not eating dog’s meat.

I know how it sounds!, but in a country like Mexico, where a lot of our food is sold on the streets, we need to make sure we are eating beef or pork, or whatever they’re advertising.

If there are dogs around, then you can be sure you are not eating dog’s meat because… Dog doesn’t eat dog, right? 

3. We could have a massive meal for dinner, but we’ll never eat watermelon 

This is also a very particular Mexican belief. You can go and have the heaviest dinner ever: you can eat 10 tacos and 5 tamales and you’ll be fine! You might feel a bit heavy, but we’re Mexicans!

¡Podemos con ello! (We can take it!)

But what is not recommendable is to eat watermelon at night because… it will fall heavy on us, it can make us sick, and it can “freeze” our stomach. So, mexicano que se respete, no cenará sandía (A good Mexican won’t have watermelon for dinner). 

4. We prefer sour and spicy candies over sweet ones

When I was a child, it never occurred to me that chamoy, which is a candy made of frutos secos, chile, sal y azúcar (dried fruit, chilli, salt sugar and water) wasn’t sold all over the world.

Mexican children can eat a bag of spicy chips like it’s nothing, or a lollipop with chili on it.

When I used to travel between Europe and Mexico and got my own supplies of Mexican candies, I used to offer them to all my friends, until I realized that they were just being polite by accepting them, but never eating them because… who likes to eat spicy candies, right? 

5. “Ahorita” is an indefinite measure of time

I’m not saying that all Mexicans are like this, but many of us use the word ahorita, which would mean “right now” in English, to explain the lapse of time we need to do something.

For example: 

  • ¿A qué hora piensas dormirte? (What time are you going to sleep?)
  • Ahorita. (Right now.) 

It’s understood that “ahorita” can mean immediately, in five minutes, or within one hour, and nobody will be bothered about it. 

female teacher explaining weird facts about mexico

So, if any of your Mexican friends is late and tells you “ahorita llego” (I’m almost there), you might want to wait… while sitting. 

Alternatively, you can check out Paulisima’s video on this single most confusing word and read more about the meaning of ahorita.

6. We have the longest underground river in the world

You have probably heard about los cenotes, a Mayan term that means “hole in the water”, which are a reservoir of spring water with a certain depth.

The water there is super cold and many cenotes are underground, but the Sac Actun system, located in Yucatan (a state in the South of Mexico) has 111 entrances of cenotes, which is una atracción turística (a tourist attraction).

However, it is important to highlight that these environments are very fragile and, therefore, it is important to care for the entire ecosystem in which they are located. Its length is 371.958 kilometers (231.124 miles). 

7. Mexico introduced chocolate to the world

Yes, as you hear it:

Mexico is responsible for some of that chocolate addiction.

I don’t like chocolate, but I’ve seen the love people have for it and I wanted to add this fact here.

Christopher Columbus was probably the first person who took cacao beans for the Kings of Spain, but back then, the taste was bitter, and it wasn’t until Hernán Cortés took chocolate to court that it became famous, as they started having it as a drink, like Emperor Moctezuma.

The rest is history… 

8. The name of our country is not Mexico and we are not in South America 

This is something that I would always discuss with my friends in Europe: Mexico is not South America and the United States is not the only country with that name!

Now, Mexico is located in North America! Don’t forget there’s also a part called Central America and the official name of our country is Estados Unidos Mexicanos (United Mexican States) – this is how it appears in our Constitution.

Of course, Mexico is a well accepted name, and it’s how we are known all over the world, but just so you know, we have a different name. 

9. Our Bogeyman is called La Llorona 

As every country, we needed a system that would help our children in behaving, and that’s “La Llorona”.

Mexican kids wouldn’t be afraid of the Bogeyman as they would of La Llorona, overall, because all of our folk tales say that she was a real woman.

Mexico is rich in legends and tales, and one of the most popular talks about the banshee of a woman who drowned her children and who later, repentant and cursed, searches for them at night in ríos, pueblos y ciudades (rivers, towns and cities), scaring those who see or hear her with her overwhelming cry.

There are many versions of this story, but what doesn’t change is how scared I was of this character when I was a child. I think I still am. 

10. Bank notes in Mexico have Braille-like markings on them for the blind 

I just learned this and I have to say this made me proud as a Mexican considering that only India, Russia, Canada and Israel do this for their people.

Since December 2005, the Bank of Mexico released notes with marks perceptible to the touch, distinctive for each denomination.

Now, if you excuse me, I will go and find out how I can tell the value of a bill by just touching it! 

More weird facts about Mexico with FREE Spanish Training

¡Muy bien! Which was your favorite fact? Would you eat any of those bugs? Let me know in the video’s comments!

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