Veracruz is a coastal state in Central Mexico. Veracruz recently replaced Chiapas as the poorest state in Mexico, so expect lots of young European backpackers to soon "discover" it as Mexico's next hip destination.
Veracruz has traditionally been less of a tourist destination than pacific parts of Mexico due to its hot, humid weather. Yet the area incorporates a range of climates, from the damp jungle areas in the northwest to the cooler, mountainous heights of Xalapa (also spelled Jalapa). Highlights are Xalapa with its colonial architecture, the laid-back beach towns such as Tuxpan and Tecolutla, and partying, rowdy Veracruz in the south.
Although the hot, humid summer weather can be unpleasant for many visitors, it creates a very lush, green landscape that can be beautiful along the southern half of the state.
Spanish and some English.
Xalapa is about a five hour trip from Mexico City.
By Bus, motorcycle, bike, horseback, or on foot
Ruins, old colonial cities, and lush green mountains reminiscent of Costa Rica
The whitewater rafting around Xalapa is some of the best in north america.
Veracruz (city) is famous throughout Mexico for its seafood feasts. The Cuban/African influence is stronger here than on the Pacific coast and the plates bear some resemblance to Cuban dishes. Though not cheap, the seafood restaurants will likely be a highlight to any trip to Veracruz.
Good fresh fruit drinks are widely available.
City of Veracruz has a bit of violent crime, elsewhere its mostly just petty theft.