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Living in Monterrey
A comprehensive guide about living well in Monterrey
Monterrey is an up and coming city with lots of culture, history, and cosmopolitan charm. Expats living in Monterrey can enjoy a lively and inspiring culture, along with good services and infrastructures, and a wide range of leisure opportunities, despite potential safety concerns.
Life in Monterrey
Mexico’s ninth largest city, Monterrey is the capital of the north-eastern state of Nuevo León. It’s a great place to live in for young, successful professionals, with the roster of international companies with offices in the city proving a big draw.
Culture and Leisure
Monterrey is a city that’s packed with culture and you’re sure to find plenty you’re interested in. The parks and outdoor spaces are a perk of living in Monterrey, with the Parque Ecologico Chipinque just minutes from the city center. It’s a great place to bike, hike, and picnic and boasts spectacular views of the city.
For indoor culture, look no further than the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, a large museum of contemporary art housed in one of Monterrey’s most beautiful buildings.
If you’re a sports fan then you’re in for a treat; because the city has two football teams in the Mexican league and the city’s baseball team, Sultanes de Monterrey, are a fixture of the Mexican baseball league.
Transportation in Monterrey
If you’re planning to drive your car in Monterrey you’ll find life easier with a Mexican driver’s license – while some authorities will recognize international driver’s licenses, it’s not guaranteed, and getting a Mexican one is fairly easy.
The license can be acquired at the offices of the Secretaria de Transportes y Validad for a small administration fee. Remember that cars in Mexico drive on the right hand side of the road.
If you aren’t a driver you’ll find that the Monterrey Metro is a cheap and easy way to get around if you’re living in the center of the city. The center is also served by several bus lines, which can be sporadic, but finding a taxi is easy and they’re a cheap and efficient way to get around.
Safety and Security
In the past Monterrey was considered one of the safest cities in Mexico, but recent escalations in tensions between warring drug cartels mean the city is less safe than it once was.
On the whole, expats living in the city need not worry for their safety, but taking common sense measures and avoiding more run-down areas particularly after dark is advised.
Be careful when driving outside the city; the area is notorious for car theft and robberies. While driving in cities is perfectly safe, the roads between them can be dangerous and people are advised not to travel at night.
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