Things To Do In Merida Mexico
When you visit Merida, there are countless activities and attractions to keep you entertained. In this section, we’ll go over some of the top things to do in Merida to make your trip memorable and enjoyable.
One of the unique experiences you can have in Merida is staying in a renovated hacienda. These historic estates offer a glimpse into the city’s past while providing modern comforts and amenities. Be sure to consider this option when planning your accommodations.
A must-visit attraction is the Paseo de Montejo, a wide street modeled after the Champs-Élysées in Paris. Lined with historic mansions and beautiful trees, a stroll down this boulevard will transport you to another time.
Heading to the Centro Historico, or Downtown Merida, is essential when exploring the city. This area boasts colonial architecture, vibrant squares, and numerous artistic and cultural venues.
Make sure you grab a memorable photo in front of the iconic Merida sign, a testament to the city’s pride and spirit. A perfect spot for that picture is Plaza Grande, which is also a great place for people-watching. While you’re there, take the time to marvel at the Merida Cathedral, an impressive architectural landmark.
In the evenings, don’t miss the Merida Cathedral Video Mapping Show, a captivating light and sound event that tells the city’s history.
Another important site in Merida is the Monumento a la Patria, a beautiful sculpture that represents the country’s historic struggle for independence.
Indulge in a delicious brunch at Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel, offering stylish dining options and picturesque views.
Lastly, immerse yourself in the rich history of the region by visiting the Mayan World Museum of Merida, the best museum in the city, showcasing the Mayan civilization and their impressive achievements.
|Stay in a Renovated Merida Hacienda||Various locations||Experience history and comfort in a renovated estate|
|Stroll Paseo de Montejo||Paseo de Montejo||Walk along a beautiful boulevard inspired by Paris|
|Visit Centro Historico (Downtown Merida)||Downtown Merida||Discover colonial architecture and vibrant squares|
|Take a Photo of the Merida Sign||Plaza Grande||Capture a memorable picture at the iconic city sign|
|People-Watch in Plaza Grande||Plaza Grande||Sit and observe the local activity|
|Marvel at the Merida Cathedral||Plaza Grande||Admire the stunning architecture of the cathedral|
|See the Merida Cathedral Video Mapping Show||Merida Cathedral||Enjoy a captivating light and sound show|
|Photograph the Monumento a la Patria||Paseo de Montejo||Appreciate the important sculpture representing independence|
|Eat Brunch at Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel||Paseo de Montejo||Savor a stylish and delicious dining experience|
|Visit the Mayan World Museum of Merida||Mayan World Museum||Learn about the ancient Mayan civilization|
With these activities in mind, your visit to Merida will be engaging, enjoyable, and enriching. Explore the city’s offerings and make the most of your stay in this culturally rich destination.
Mayan World Museum of Merida (Best Merida Museum)
The Mayan World Museum of Merida, also known as the Gran Museo del Mundo Maya, is one of the top museums to visit when you’re in Merida. This modern and interactive museum showcases incredible Mayan culture, history, and art, giving you a comprehensive understanding of the area’s rich heritage.
As you enter the museum, you’ll be greeted by a massive ceiba tree sculpture, which holds great significance in Mayan mythology. Inside, the galleries are divided into four main areas:
- The Mayan People
- The Mayan Environment
- Mayan Culture and Everyday Life
- Ancestral Knowledge and New Horizons
Each exhibit is filled with captivating artifacts, audiovisual presentations, and multimedia displays that capture your attention and make learning engaging. A popular exhibit includes a representation of the Mayan underworld, which provides an immersive journey through the ancient belief system.
|Address||Calle 60 S/N, Centro, 97000|
|Hours||9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. daily|
|Admission||Varies according to age and nationality|
When visiting this museum, make sure to allocate at least half-day to ensure you cover all the grounds and fully appreciate the variety of displays. Along with exhibition halls, the museum also features a planetarium, auditorium, and a café, offering a well-rounded cultural experience.
In summary, the Mayan World Museum of Merida is an unmissable attraction for anyone visiting the city. As the best museum in Merida, it provides a unique opportunity to delve into the fascinating world of the Mayan civilization and gain unparalleled insight into this ancient culture.
Free Walking Tour Merida
Merida, a charming city in Mexico, boasts a rich history that marries the cultures of the Mayans, Spaniards, and Arabs. One of the best ways to immerse yourself in this captivating history is by participating in a free walking tour. During these tours, knowledgeable guides will show you some of the most popular sights and landmarks in the city, while sharing stories, legends, and historical background.
There are several free walking tours available in Merida, each with its own unique focus and itinerary. Some of these tours will take you through the historic center of Merida, featuring stops such as the cathedral, beautiful streets, and picturesque corners.
A popular option for a free walking tour in Merida is the Free Tour Merida Yucatan – Mexico. Rated 9.4 out of 10, this tip-based tour is offered by Free Walking Tour Mexico and covers iconic locations such as the Merida Cathedral and Parque Hidalgo.
|Free Tour Merida Yucatan||Free Walking Tour Mexico||9.4||Tip-based||Merida Cathedral, Parque Hidalgo|
While taking a free walking tour, you will not only learn about the city’s fascinating history but also enjoy its vibrant atmosphere. To make the most out of your experience, it is advisable to wear comfortable shoes, carry water, and wear sun protection, as you’ll be on your feet and exposed to the elements for a significant portion of the tour.
To reserve a spot on a free walking tour, visit the websites of tour providers, such as GuruWalk or FREETOUR.com. Booking online allows you to plan your trip in advance, ensuring that you don’t miss out on an opportunity to delve into Merida’s captivating history and culture.
Remember that these tours operate on a tip-based system, so it’s essential to show your appreciation to the tour guide by tipping them according to your satisfaction and budget. Happy exploring!
Go Bar Hopping at the Best Merida Bars
Merida is known for its vibrant nightlife, and going bar hopping is undoubtedly one of the best ways to experience it. In this section, we will introduce you to some of the top bars in Merida, perfect for a night out on the town.
La Negrita Cantina is a popular spot among locals and tourists alike. This lively cantina offers a fantastic atmosphere accompanied by live music that’ll get you dancing. The drinks are reasonably priced, and you’ll find a selection of traditional Mexican snacks to satisfy your hunger in between bars.
Casa Chica delivers a more intimate, speakeasy-style experience. Marvel at the unique and eclectic décor while sipping on expertly crafted cocktails. The dimly lit bar sets the perfect ambiance for a relaxed, sophisticated evening.
Cervecería Union is a great place for craft beer enthusiasts. With a wide variety of local and international beers, you’ll undoubtedly find something to suit your taste buds. The atmosphere is casual, making it the perfect spot to mingle with friends and other patrons.
|La Negrita Cantina||Lively, energetic||Live music, affordable drinks, traditional Mexican snacks|
|Casa Chica||Intimate, speakeasy-style||Unique décor, craft cocktails, dimly lit ambiance|
|Cervecería Union||Casual, friendly||Wide variety of craft beers, laid-back atmosphere|
Remember to pace yourself and enjoy sampling the variety of drinks and atmospheres each bar has to offer. These bars are just a small taste of what Merida has to offer, so venture out and discover your favorite spots during your visit.
Things to Do in Merida Centro
Merida Centro is the heart of the city, offering a wide range of fascinating attractions and activities for visitors. Here are some top picks for you to explore:
Visit Plaza Grande: The main square of Merida Centro is surrounded by beautiful colonial buildings and is the perfect place to start your exploration. The square often hosts local events and is an ideal spot for people-watching.
Marvel at Merida Cathedral: The oldest cathedral in the Americas, Merida Cathedral, is located just off Plaza Grande. It’s a stunning piece of architecture and a must-visit for history enthusiasts.
Explore the Mayan World Museum of Merida: This modern museum is one of the best in Merida. It showcases the rich cultural heritage of the Mayan civilization, with interactive exhibits and informative displays.
Admire the colonial architecture on Paseo de Montejo: Take a stroll down Paseo de Montejo to see some of the most magnificent colonial mansions in Merida. Many of these have been converted into museums, restaurants, and boutique hotels.
Here’s a summary of the key attractions for your convenience:
|Visit Plaza Grande||Central square, colonial buildings, events, people-watching|
|Marvel at Merida Cathedral||Oldest cathedral in the Americas, stunning architecture|
|Explore Mayan World Museum||Modern museum, Mayan history, interactive exhibits|
|Admire architecture at Paseo de Montejo||Colonial mansions, museums, restaurants, boutique hotels|
Remember to take your time experiencing each attraction and immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of Merida Centro.
Have Botanas & Drinks at the Merida Cantinas
When visiting Merida, make sure to experience the lively atmosphere of the local cantinas. These traditional establishments offer a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture while enjoying some drinks and botanas (snacks).
Cantinas are known for their friendly environment, and on your visit, you’ll likely find yourself surrounded by locals having a great time and listening to popular music. To help you plan your cantina-hopping adventure, here’s a summary table of three popular cantinas in Merida:
|El Cardenal||Calle 63 x 70 y 72, Centro||Live music, authentic vibe|
|La Negrita||Calle 62 x 49, Centro||Trendy spot, varied botanas|
|El Dzalbay Cantina||Calle 64 x 53, Centro||Rooftop bar, live DJ|
Each cantina offers a different atmosphere and selection of botanas, so don’t hesitate to try them all to find your favorite. As you explore the various cantinas, you may also want to learn more about the history and anecdotes shared by locals, which will enrich your experience.
When embarking on your Merida cantinas adventure, remember to stick to a responsible pace. You’ll want to enjoy the experience without overindulging in drinks and snacks. The cantinas often serve refreshing beers and innovative cocktails, making it important to take your time and truly savor the distinct flavors and atmosphere of each location.
So, during your trip to Merida, make sure to engulf yourself in the infectious energy of the cantinas, enjoy the delicious botanas and drinks, and make lasting memories with friends or locals.
Check out Lucas de Galvez Market
When visiting Merida, make sure to explore the Lucas de Galvez Market, one of the city’s most vibrant and authentic destinations. This sprawling market, covering 156,000 square feet, hosts more than 2000 vendors and attracts over 100,000 visitors daily.
At the market, you’ll find a diverse array of products, from fresh fruits and vegetables to meat, fish, and various seasonings. Be sure to try the local cherimoya fruit, which Mark Twain once described as “the most delicious fruit known to man!” Although tomatoes and potatoes are available, the quality may not be consistent in Southern Mexico, so choose wisely.
As you explore, you’ll also come across delicious local street food, including panuchos, and an assortment of traditional Yucatecan dishes. Don’t hesitate to sample the cuisine during your market visit. In addition to food, numerous vendors sell crafts, clothing, home goods, and other unique items perfect for souvenirs or gifts.
|Fresh Produce||Fruits, vegetables, meat, and fish|
|Yucatecan Dishes||Panuchos, bebidas, etc.|
|Crafts & Apparel||Baskets, shoes, clothes, souvenirs|
So, pack your adventurous spirit and get ready to immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and flavors of the Lucas de Galvez Market. This bustling locale is sure to leave a memorable impression on your trip to Merida.
Enjoy Dinner & Live Music at Mercado 60
If you’re looking for a lively night out in Merida, Mercado 60 is the perfect place. This trendy food hall is teeming with culinary delights and vibrant live music. You can find 18 diverse dining options to satisfy your cravings, from tacos to pizza, and more.
As you explore the food hall, the energetic atmosphere will draw you in. With live music or events on most nights, Mercado 60 is the ideal location for a night of dinner, drinks, and dancing. To help you navigate, here’s a table summarizing some essential details:
|Food Options||18 dining choices with diverse cuisines||Calle 60 #461, Parque Santa Lucia, Centro, Merida 97000|
|Live Music||Most nights with local musicians|
|Atmosphere||Trendy, lively, and perfect for a night out|
When visiting Mercado 60, make sure to arrive early to secure a good spot for enjoying the live music. You can expect the venue to fill up quickly as the night progresses.
Remember, while you’re exploring the best thing Merida has to offer, Mercado 60 stands out as an exciting and vibrant destination for dinner and entertainment. So, don’t miss the chance to create lasting memories with friends and family in this bustling food hall.
Eat at Taqueria La Lupita (As Seen on Netflix)
When you visit Merida, you must try the delicious tacos at Taqueria La Lupita. This popular food spot gained even more fame after being featured in the Netflix Series “Taco Chronicles.” Located inside Mercado Municipal No 2, La Lupita offers a wide range of tacos and traditional Mexican fare at affordable prices.
Taqueria La Lupita’s specialty is cochinita pibil, a classic Yucatecan dish made from slow-roasted marinated pork. This mouthwatering dish is served in tacos, tortas, or by itself with rice and beans. The tacos are reasonably priced, with one costing around $16 pesos (about $0.77 USD), and the tortas are a bit more expensive at $26 pesos ($1.26 USD).
|Dish||Price in Pesos||Price in USD|
Take your time to explore the rest of the market as well, where you can find various other food vendors with a diverse selection of local cuisine. But before you’re done with your food adventure, make sure to grab at least one more taco at La Lupita – you won’t regret it.
Visit Merida Arches: Arco de Dragones, Arco del Puente & Arco de San Juan
While in Merida, don’t miss the opportunity to visit its iconic arches, which are significant historical landmarks that punctuate the city’s streets. In this section, we’ll explore the Arco de Dragones, Arco del Puente, and Arco de San Juan.
Arco de Dragones is located at the intersection of streets 50 and 61. It was constructed to protect the city from pirate invasions and has a distinct appearance due to its unique design. It is a perfect spot for capturing memorable photos with its beautiful architecture.
Arco del Puente can be found at the crossing of streets 63 and 50. It is another colonial arch with a story to tell and it once marked the entrance to the city. The name “del Puente” (of the bridge) hints at the existence of a bridge nearby that was used by travelers in the colonial era.
Arco de San Juan is situated in the San Juan neighborhood, at the junction of streets 64 and 69-A. This arch was built in 1790 and served as a gateway to the road leading to Campeche. The San Juan neighborhood itself is worth exploring, as it is home to a number of historical buildings and sites.
|Arch||Location||Year of Construction||Significance|
|Arco de Dragones||Intersection of streets 50 and 61||1690||Protection from pirate invasions|
|Arco del Puente||Intersection of streets 63 and 50||1690||Marked the entrance to the city|
|Arco de San Juan||Intersection of streets 64 and 69-A||1790||Gateway to the road leading to Campeche|
To make the most of your visit to these arches, consider taking a leisurely stroll through the surrounding streets and neighborhoods. This will not only give you the chance to appreciate the architecture of the arches but also to immerse yourself in the history and culture of Merida.
Shop for Authentic Merida Souvenirs
When visiting Merida, you’ll want to bring home some unique souvenirs to remember your trip. Merida offers an array of authentic, locally made items that make excellent gifts for yourself or others. In this section, we’ll discuss some popular Merida souvenirs and where you can find them.
Talavera Pottery: A traditional Mexican art form, Talavera pottery comes from Puebla, but you can find beautiful pieces in various gift shops in Merida. These stunning ceramics feature intricate designs and bright colors that will remind you of your time in Mexico.
Tzotzil Pom Poms: Another popular souvenir, Tzotzil pom poms originate from the Chiapas region. These vibrant, handcrafted items are available in Merida and make a great addition to any home decor.
Mexican Folk Art: Merida is home to various Mexican folk art pieces made by talented local artisans. These unique creations can be found in specialty shops and markets throughout the city. They include wood carvings, textiles, and more.
When looking for shops to buy your authentic Merida souvenirs, consider visiting places such as:
|Shop Name||Address||Items available|
|Between The Lines||Calle 55 #510, Centro||Books, local artwork|
|La Casa de Donia Way||Calle 63 #510, Centro||Pottery, textiles|
|Merida en Domingo||Zocalo Area||Traditional clothing|
Remember to visit these local businesses and marketplaces to support the artisans directly and immerse yourself in an authentic shopping experience. By purchasing unique and locally made items, you’ll not only have a memorable souvenir but also contribute positively to the local community.
Create your own Perfume at Coqui Coqui Merida
Coqui Coqui Perfumeria & Spa is a popular spot for tourists and locals in Merida. Creating your own unique perfume in Merida’s flagship boutique is a memorable experience. This boutique offers visitors the opportunity to craft a custom scent, explore various fragrances, and immerse themselves in the world of perfume.
Here is a table of key information for your visit to Coqui Coqui Merida:
|Location||Paseo de Montejo, Mérida|
|Activity||Creating your custom perfume|
|Hours||Usually 10 AM to 6 PM|
|Price Range||Varies depending on products|
When you enter the boutique, you’ll notice a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The historic building adds an alluring element to the perfume-making experience. The knowledgeable staff will guide you through the process of selecting your ideal scent. They have a wide variety of fragrances to choose from, including their signature Yucatan scents inspired by the region’s flora.
In addition to perfume-making, Coqui Coqui also offers a range of other products, such as soaps, candles, and bath oils, infused with their iconic scents. These items can be perfect souvenirs or gifts for your loved ones.
While visiting the Coqui Coqui Perfumeria & Spa, remember to respect the quiet atmosphere and enjoy the sensory journey in creating your own unique fragrance.
Go Organic at the Saturday Slow Food Market
When in Mérida, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Slow Food Market, a bustling spot where you can explore the organic and healthy side of local cuisine. Held every Saturday, the market features a variety of vendors selling fresh, natural, and homemade products.
Here, you can find organic produce, eggs, artisanal cheeses, baked goods, honey, and more. The market is known for its dedication to sustainable and eco-friendly practices, which aligns with the Slow Food Movement’s principles.
|| Item | Location || |:-:|:-:| | Slow Food Market (Centro) | Calle 33d #498, Reparto Dolores Patrón 97070 | | Slow Food Market (North) | Parque Pista Roja, Calle 46 x 71 y 75, Cordemex 97115 |
In addition to the local vendors, the market often features the presence of international merchants, which allows for an exciting blend of flavors and cultural influences. There’s always something new and interesting to discover, whether it’s unique sauces, dips, or homemade treats.
The Saturday Slow Food Market not only offers a chance to taste fresh, organic food, but also an opportunity to connect with local farmers and producers. Feel free to chat with them, as they will be more than happy to help you with any questions and provide information about their products. Your experience at the market will not only help you better understand the local culinary culture, but also contribute to a more sustainable way of living.
Enjoy a late night meal at Cafe Impala
At the end of a long day of exploring Merida, you might find yourself craving a late night meal or snack. Cafe Impala is the perfect place for satisfying your late night hunger. This cozy spot is known for its tasty, light dishes and friendly atmosphere.
When you step into Cafe Impala, you’ll immediately notice the welcoming ambiance. Grab a table outside to take in the sights and sounds of Merida while enjoying your food. The menu at Cafe Impala offers a variety of options, from small snacks to heartier meals. If you’re looking for a quick treat, try their delicious pastries or salads.
|Pastries||Freshly baked sweet treats|
|Salads||Healthy, satisfying options|
|Light meals||Perfect for a late night snack|
The greatest attraction of Cafe Impala, however, is people watching. The location is perfect for observing locals and other travelers as they go about their nightly activities. You can watch the lively city while savoring your food.
In summary, Cafe Impala is your go-to venue for a satisfying late night meal or snack in Merida. With fresh and light dishes and a great location for people watching, it’s a must-visit spot during your stay.
Admire the El Pinar House
The El Pinar House is a historic pink mansion located in downtown Merida. Built in the early 1900s, this charming piece of architecture is a must-see when visiting Merida. As you walk through its corridors, you can admire the intricate details of the mansion and learn about the stories and legends that surround it for more than a century.
El Pinar House recently opened its doors to the public, so now visitors can join guided tours to explore this enigmatic building. The expert guides will walk you through each room, sharing the interesting history and anecdotes about the mansion and its former inhabitants. Here’s a brief overview of what you can expect to see during your visit:
|Tours Available||Guided tours in English and Spanish|
As you walk around the El Pinar House, be sure to take your time to absorb the beautiful architecture. The façade of the mansion is adorned with intricate carvings and ornaments, reflecting its past grandeur. The interior is equally stunning, with spacious rooms featuring high ceilings, elegant furnishings, and detailed floor plans that showcase the wealth and status of the former residents.
During your visit, don’t forget to take some memorable photos with your friends or family to remember your experience. The El Pinar House is also an excellent example of how Merida continues to preserve and honor its history while adapting to modern times.
In summary, admiring the El Pinar House is an excellent activity to do during your stay in Merida. Make sure to add it to your itinerary to enjoy a glimpse of Merida’s rich past, and appreciate this remarkable piece of Colonial architecture.
Check out Merida’s Restaurant Row
In the heart of Merida, you’ll find the bustling Restaurant Row on Calle 47. This area is famous for its diverse culinary options and vibrant atmosphere. Here, you can indulge your taste buds in some of the finest restaurants in the city, offering various cuisines from traditional Yucatecan dishes to modern international fusion meals.
While exploring Restaurant Row, be sure to make time for these must-try eateries:
|Manjar Blanco||Yucatecan||Traditional Yucatecan|
|Rosas & Xocolate||Contemporary||Brunch and Chocolate-infused dishes|
Begin your culinary journey by visiting Manjar Blanco, a restaurant known for its delicious traditional Yucatecan cuisine. Here, you’ll experience dishes made with locally sourced ingredients, featuring rich flavors and the warmth of homemade cooking.
Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel
For a more contemporary dining experience, head over to Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel, where you can enjoy a leisurely brunch. This trendy spot is known for its chocolate-infused dishes that add a delectable twist to classic fare.
After sampling the fantastic food offered in this “foodie corridor,” take a stroll along the scenic and historic Paseo de Montejo nearby. This tree-lined avenue boasts impressive European-style mansions and vibrant street life, perfect for an after-meal walk to burn off some calories and explore the city further.
Embrace the exceptional dining experiences available on Merida’s Restaurant Row, and don’t be afraid to venture out to other nearby locations for even more culinary delights.
Shop the Merida en Domingo Sunday Market
Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of the Merida en Domingo Sunday Market, where you**’**ll find everything from traditional Mayan handicrafts to local delicacies. This lively weekly market offers a great opportunity to soak up the authentic ambience of the city while discovering unique souvenirs and gifts.
Be sure to arrive early to make the most of your visit, as the streets surrounding the Plaza Grande are filled with vendors, performers, and artisans. Take your time browsing through colorful stalls and engaging with local craftsmen, who are more than happy to share stories behind their creations.
Indulge in mouth-watering Yucatecan food and drinks as you explore the market. Here’s a summary of what you can expect to find:
|Handicrafts||Mayan textiles, pottery, jewelry, ceramics|
|Food||Salbutes, panuchos, cochinita pibil, marquesitas|
|Beverages||Fresh fruit juices, horchata, exotic cocktails|
|Live Performances||Music, folk dances, street performers, puppet shows|
Don’t forget to take a break from shopping to enjoy the live entertainment, ranging from musical performances to traditional folk dances and captivating street shows. This market truly has something for everyone, and experiencing the rich culture of Merida firsthand is an unforgettable experience.
While wandering the market, also take note of details such as seeing an open-air painting or portrait, or watching a skilled potter molding clay. These memorable interactions are what make the Merida en Domingo Sunday Market a must-visit destination during your stay in the city.
Have a Rooftop Dinner at Picheta
When visiting Merida, you’ll definitely want to have a memorable dining experience at Picheta. This rooftop restaurant offers a creative menu, bringing together flavorful ingredients that showcase the diversity of Mexican cuisine. Located at Calle 61 x 60 y 62, Merida 97000 Mexico, Picheta is not only known for its delicious food but also its impeccable service.
The rooftop setting of Picheta allows you to enjoy views overlooking a large zócalo, creating a cozy and inviting atmosphere. Whether you’re going for a romantic dinner or a casual outing with friends, this unique dining spot will etch a lasting impression.
Here’s a summary of what you can expect at Picheta:
|Cuisine||Mexican, Latin, Contemporary|
|Price Range||$$ – $$$|
|Opening Hours||5:00 PM – 12:30 AM|
|Address||Calle 61 x 60 y 62, Merida 97000, Mexico|
|Phone Number||+52 999 506 0339|
As you enjoy your rooftop dinner, don’t hesitate to ask the friendly and professional staff for recommendations. They may suggest some signature dishes crafted with local ingredients that represent the true essence of Merida’s culinary traditions.
Visiting Picheta not only offers you a delightful experience in terms of gastronomy but also a chance to admire the beautiful surroundings of Merida. So while planning your itinerary, make sure to save an evening to savor a fantastic rooftop dinner at Picheta.
Catch a Pok Ta Pok Mayan Ball Game
One of the most unique experiences you can have in Merida is watching a live game of Pok Ta Pok, an ancient Mayan ball game. The game, also known as Pitz, involves teams of players trying to pass a heavy rubber ball through stone hoops without using their hands or feet – only their hips, knees, and elbows.
When and where to watch the game: The Pok Ta Pok games typically take place every Friday night in Plaza Grande, starting around 8:30 pm. Be sure to arrive early to secure a good spot, as these events often draw large crowds of locals and tourists alike.
The historical significance of Pok Ta Pok: The Mayan ball game has a rich history, dating back thousands of years, and was an essential part of Mayan religious and social ceremonies. It was believed that the outcome of the game held spiritual significance, with the winning team thought to be favored by the gods, whereas the losers may have faced severe consequences such as sacrifice.
Tips for attending the game: While enjoying the spectacle of Pok Ta Pok, keep an eye out for vendors selling traditional Yucatecan snacks and refreshments, like marquesitas, esquites, and micheladas. Also, while there is no admission fee, it’s encouraged to support the performers through voluntary donations.
To help you remember the key points, here’s a brief table summarizing the information:
|Game name||Pok Ta Pok, Pitz|
|Description||Ancient Mayan ball game with a heavy rubber ball|
|When to watch||Friday nights, around 8:30 pm|
|Historical significance||Central to Mayan religious and social ceremonies|
|Tips||Arrive early, enjoy local snacks, and consider donations|
By attending a Pok Ta Pok game, you will be immersed in the authentic Mayan culture and experience a unique, thrilling event that transports you back in time.
Stay in a Renovated Merida Hacienda
When visiting Mérida, you should consider staying in a renovated hacienda. These historical properties, once the center of farming and manufacturing in the Yucatán region, have been transformed into beautiful accommodations. They offer a unique experience and a chance to immerse yourself in the culture and history of the area.
One such hacienda is Hacienda Xcanatun, which boasts 18 suites, a pool, and the Angsana Spa. Onsite dining is available at Casa de Piedra restaurant, where you can sample traditional Yucatan foods, and the Yax Kii bar for cocktails. Past guests have praised the atmosphere as beautiful and relaxing, with an outdoor pool that feels like swimming in ruins.
|Hacienda Xcanatun||18 suites, pool, Angsana Spa, restaurant, bar||$104|
Another option for your stay is Casa Tavera, a quaint independent boutique hotel set inside a traditional colonial home with azulejo tile details. Rooms at Casa Tavera start at $59 a night.
If you prefer a more social experience, consider staying at Che Nomadas Merida Adults Only. Located in an old colonial mansion, this hostel offers private rooms, a pool, and communal areas to help you make the most of your Mérida visit.
Remember, when you stay in a renovated Mérida hacienda, not only do you enjoy the unique ambiance and architecture, but you also support the preservation of these historical landmarks.
Stroll Paseo de Montejo
One of the must-do activities when visiting Merida is taking a stroll along Paseo de Montejo. This grand avenue was designed by the famous conquistador, Francisco de Montejo, with the vision of recreating the Champs Elyse of Paris in Merida. Although the resemblance may not be striking, Paseo de Montejo has its own unique charm that attracts visitors from around the world.
This picturesque, 2-mile-long (3.2km) walkable street is lined with trees and vibrant bougainvillea bushes. As you walk down the avenue, enjoy the view of gorgeous colonial mansions that represent Merida’s rich history and architecture. These mansions were built during the city’s golden age and reflect the opulence of that era.
While exploring Paseo de Montejo, make sure to visit some of the amazing cafes, restaurants, and bars you will encounter along the way. These establishments offer a perfect opportunity to rest, grab a bite, and soak in the local atmosphere.
Here’s a summary table of key points for your stroll down Paseo de Montejo:
|Stroll along Paseo de Montejo||Tree-lined avenue, 2 miles long (3.2km)|
|Admire colonial mansions||Built during Merida’s golden age|
|Visit cafes, restaurants, and bars||Enjoy the local atmosphere and flavors|
Remember, as you explore Paseo de Montejo and other areas of Merida, it’s essential to respect the local culture, and most importantly, have a great time on your unforgettable journey through this captivating city.
Visit Centro Historico (Downtown Merida)
Wandering through the heart of Merida, the Centro Historico is an absolute must for any visitor. This vibrant and bustling downtown area is home to many significant landmarks, museums, and colonial-style buildings that showcase the city’s rich history and culture. Let’s explore some of the highlights in Centro Historico:
1. Stroll through Plaza Grande: Take some time to soak up the charm of Plaza Grande, one of Mexico’s most enchanting squares. You’ll find towering laurel trees, iron benches, and stunning views of historic buildings all around.
2. Marvel at the Merida Cathedral: As you continue your exploration, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the stunning Merida Cathedral. This impressive structure is one of the oldest cathedrals in the Americas, with a rich history dating back to the 16th century.
3. Enjoy a Free Walking Tour: Start your visit to Centro Historico with a guided tour. The municipal tourism office offers daily walking tours at 10 am. These free tours help you get your bearings and introduce you to the area’s significant landmarks.
|Activity||Address||Time to Spend|
|Plaza Grande||Calle 60, Calle 61, and Calle 62 intersections||1 – 2 hours|
|Merida Cathedral||Calle 61 S/N, Centro||1 hour|
|Walking Tour||Meet at the municipal tourism office||2 – 3 hours|
Remember to wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water when exploring Centro Historico. The area is best enjoyed on foot, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the history, culture, and beauty of downtown Merida.
Take a Photo of the Merida Sign
Merida, a vibrant and historical city in Mexico, has become a popular tourist destination in recent years. One of the fun and memorable activities to partake in during your visit is taking a photo of the iconic Merida Sign. Located in two different spots throughout the city, these large, colorful letters spelling out “Merida” make for the perfect photo opportunity to remember your trip.
|Merida Sign Location 1||Merida Sign Location 2|
|Main Square (Plaza Grande)||Next to Monumento a la Patria|
The first Merida Sign can be found in the city’s main square, also known as Plaza Grande. The plaza itself is a beautiful location with well-manicured trees and bushes, surrounded by stunning historical buildings. It is an ideal place to start your adventure in Merida, absorb the local atmosphere, and snap a picture with the sign.
The second Merida Sign is located close to the Monumento a la Patria. This impressive monument is a symbol of the city with intricate carvings detailing Mexico’s history. Visiting this sign not only offers another chance to capture a memorable photo, but also allows you to explore and appreciate the art and history that the nearby monument represents.
Remember to take your time, capture different angles and be creative with your photos, as these will serve as precious keepsakes of your visit.
During your visit to Merida, don’t miss out on the opportunity to immortalize your memories by taking photos with the two Merida Signs. As an easy and fun activity, it’s sure to be a great addition to your itinerary and a reminder of the marvelous time spent in this amazing city.
People-Watch in Plaza Grande
One of the best activities to immerse yourself in the local culture of Merida is people-watching at the Plaza Grande. This vibrant city square is surrounded by significant historical buildings and bustling activity, making it a perfect spot to take a break and observe the daily life of Merida’s residents.
How to get there: The Plaza Grande is located in the heart of Merida, at Calle 60 S/N, Centro, 97000 Mérida. You can easily reach the plaza by foot, taxi, or public transportation.
What to do: Find a comfortable spot on one of the benches or sit at a nearby cafe, and enjoy the sights and sounds of Plaza Grande. You’ll witness a lively mix of locals and tourists as they go about their day.
What to see: While you’re people-watching, make sure to also take in the beautiful architecture surrounding the plaza. Some notable buildings include Merida Cathedral, the Governor’s Palace, and the Montejo House.
When to go: Plaza Grande is open 24/7, but the best times for people-watching are in the mornings and evenings when Merida’s residents are out and about. Weekends might be busier, but also give you a chance to see more performers and street vendors.
|Activity||Location||Why it’s worth it|
|Enjoy the architecture||Around the Plaza Grande||Significant historical buildings and aesthetic beauty|
|Street performances||In and around the plaza||Chance to see Merida’s vibrant art and culture scene|
|Café sitting||Cafes surrounding the plaza||Great spots to people-watch while enjoying local food|
|Street vendors||Throughout Plaza Grande||Discover local crafts and souvenirs to take back home|
Remember, taking the time to people-watch in Plaza Grande allows you to connect with the rich culture and beauty of Merida, making your trip even more memorable. Enjoy this simple yet rewarding experience as you explore this charming Mexican city.
Marvel at the Merida Cathedral
As you walk through Merida, make sure to take some time to visit the breathtaking Merida Cathedral. Located in the heart of the historic district, this 16th-century cathedral is an architectural gem and a testament to the city’s rich history. The cathedral is the oldest in mainland America, completed in 1598, and is dedicated to San Ildefonso.
When you enter the cathedral, you will be struck by its enormous size and stunning Baroque facade. The interior showcases a mix of Gothic, Moorish, and indigenous influences, giving it a unique and captivating charm. Admire the high, vaulted ceilings, and the intricate stone carvings that adorn the walls.
Within the cathedral, you’ll find various important religious artifacts and artworks that hold great significance. Some highlights include the massive main altar, made from local Mayan stone, boasting an impressive collection of religious statues. Another attraction is the large crucifix known as the “Christ of the Blisters,” which has been a symbol of devotion and spiritual guidance for centuries.
Here’s a brief summary of what to look for when visiting the Merida Cathedral:
|Location||Historic district of Merida|
|Year of Completion||1598|
|Architectural Style||A mix of Gothic, Moorish, and indigenous influences|
|Main Altar Materials||Local Mayan stone|
|Notable Artwork & Relics||Large crucifix called “Christ of the Blisters”|
Remember to take some photos to capture the beauty of this historic landmark, as exploring the Merida Cathedral is an unforgettable experience and a must-see attraction on your visit to the city.
Photograph the Monumento a la Patria
When you visit Merida, don’t miss out on the opportunity to photograph the impressive Monumento a la Patria. This iconic landmark was created by Mexican/Colombian sculptor Rómulo Rozo and is located at the northmost point of Mérida’s Paseo de Montejo.
Take your time to appreciate the intricate details of this awe-inspiring monument that showcases Mexican history and cultural unity. You’ll find numerous figures and symbols, painstakingly crafted to tell the story of Mexico’s past and present.
As you make your way around the monument, pay attention to the various perspectives and angles that allow you to experient new ways of capturing the incredible artistry. This spot is ideal for photographers, both amateur and professional, looking to add a unique and memorable piece to their portfolio.
Remember to bring your camera or smartphone to make the most of your visit to this exceptional site. And while you’re in the area, be sure to explore the surrounding Paseo de Montejo, known for its beautiful architecture and tree-lined sidewalks.
|Location||Paseo de Montejo, Mérida, Yucatán|
|Created by||Mexican/Colombian sculptor Rómulo Rozo|
|Representations||Mexican history and cultural unity|
|Nearby attractions||Paseo de Montejo, historic buildings|
By immersing yourself in the beauty and rich history of the Monumento a la Patria, you’ll undoubtedly enhance your overall Mérida experience.
Eat Brunch at Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel
When visiting Merida, treat yourself to an unforgettable dining experience at the Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel. Located on the iconic Paseo de Montejo, this hotel offers various exquisite dining options, including a lively terrace, an indoor/outdoor courtyard, and a fine dining lounge. If you prefer dining under the stars, the rooftop Moon Lounge is also a great choice.
The Rosas & Xocolate Hotel Restaurant is known for offering fusion cuisine, with a range of vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options. The atmosphere is elegant, making it perfect for brunch, making your experience special and memorable. The price range at the restaurant is from $14 to $50, providing you with a range of options to suit your budget.
Here’s a brief overview of some key information about the Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel Restaurant:
|Special Diets||Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options|
|Price Range||$14 – $50|
|Location||Avenida Paseo de Montejo 480, Merida 97000, Mexico|
|Contact||+52 999 924 2992|
While you’re in Mérida, we highly recommend taking the time to explore the city and its impressive attractions. From walking along Paseo de Montejo and admiring European Mansions to exploring the historical center and enjoying lunch at the local Restaurant Row, there’s plenty to do in this beautiful city. Make the most of your time in Merida, and don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy brunch at the delightful Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel.
Have Lunch at Manjar Blanco (As Seen on Netflix)
If you find yourself in Merida, don’t miss the opportunity to explore the culinary scene by visiting the famous Manjar Blanco. This beloved restaurant, featured on the Netflix series Taco Chronicles, has an outstanding reputation thanks to its delicious food and warm atmosphere.
As you step into the charming courtyard of Manjar Blanco, you’ll get a sense of the authentic Mexican experience. The eatery offers a variety of dishes, including their popular pork tacos which are highly praised by visitors. Besides that, the restaurant caters to vegetarians, ensuring everyone in your party has something delectable to enjoy. Check out the following summary table for a quick overview:
|Price Range||$3 – $11|
|Location||Calle 47 # 496 por 58 y 60 Centro, Merida, Yucatan.|
|Special Diets||Vegetarian-friendly options|
One of the unique features of Manjar Blanco is its delightful pickled onions. Even if you’re not a fan, you might find yourself enjoying this tasty garnish accompanying your meal. Paired with the excellent service and cozy atmosphere, it’s no wonder that Manjar Blanco is a favorite among tourists and locals alike.
To get the most out of your meal at Manjar Blanco, consider visiting during breakfast or lunch hours – the eatery is particularly known for providing a fulfilling and enjoyable dining experience during these times. As you savor the scrumptious flavors at this highly recommended restaurant, you can be sure that your visit to Merida will be even more memorable.
Take a Photo on the Merida Big Chairs in Parque Santa Lucia
One of the must-visit places in Merida is the beautiful Parque Santa Lucia. This park is located in the heart of Mérida’s Centro and is known for its iconic big chairs, which have become a popular spot for both tourists and locals to snap a memorable photo.
The moment you step into Parque Santa Lucia, you’ll notice the colorful atmosphere and feel the vibrant energy of the area. Surrounded by charming architecture, cafes, and restaurants, this park makes for a perfect backdrop to capture your memories in Mérida. After exploring the park, you can also enjoy some local food, wine, and dine in the surrounding establishments.
In addition to taking a photo by the big chairs, Parque Santa Lucia also offers musical entertainment on Thursday nights. The Orquesta Típica de Yucalpetén and groups of jaraneros perform popular folkloric songs and dances, where you can appreciate the rich local culture.
Below is a summary of what you can expect when visiting Parque Santa Lucia:
|Location||Parque Santa Lucia, Mérida’s Centro|
|Iconic Feature||The Big Chairs|
|Entertainment||Popular Folkloric Songs and Dances (Thursday nights at 9 pm)|
|Nearby Conveniences||Cafes, Restaurants, and Charming Architecture|
Remember to take your camera with you when visiting Parque Santa Lucia, so you can capture the essence of Mérida in your photos. Enjoy posing on the big chairs, explore the surroundings, and make the most of your time in this delightful park.
Enjoy Dinner & Dancing in Santa Lucia Park at Night
One of the best ways to spend an evening in Merida is by enjoying dinner and dancing at the vibrant Santa Lucia Park. This lively park is filled with an array of nice restaurants where you can savor delicious local and international cuisine. After your meal, take a stroll along the park’s benches and make use of the free Wi-Fi to share your experiences with friends and family.
Furthermore, Santa Lucia Park is a popular spot for live music and traditional Yucatecan “Jarana” dance performances. Check the schedule for any open-air events that might coincide with your visit, as these are fun and lively experiences that you shouldn’t miss1.
When it comes to dining options, Mercado 60 is an excellent choice, offering 18 different eateries and live music on most nights2. This popular food hall is also an ideal spot for Merida nightlife, providing the perfect blend of dinner, drinks, and dancing.
|Santa Lucia Park||Nice restaurants, free Wi-Fi, open-air events||Map|
|Mercado 60||18 dining options, live music, nightlife||Map|
Whether you’re in the mood for a romantic evening or a fun night out with friends, Santa Lucia Park is an excellent destination for dinner and dancing during your visit to Merida. Remember to take a photo on the iconic Merida Big Chairs3 to capture memories of your unforgettable night at the park.
- Review of Parque de Santa Lucía | Merida, Mexico – AFAR ↩
- 31 BEST Restaurants in Merida Mexico (Updated October 2023) ↩
- 51 Best Things to Do in Merida Mexico in 2023 (with Map) – Travel To Merida ↩
Shop the Boutiques at Casa Tho
While exploring Merida, make sure to visit Casa Tho. This stylish concept house located at Paseo de Montejo offers a delightful shopping experience. The boutique features a well-curated selection of Mexican artwork, handicrafts, clothing, and accessories. Here, you can find unique and authentic items that represent the Yucatan culture, making it a perfect place for souvenir shopping.
Casa Tho is more than just a shop; it’s an immersive cultural experience. You’ll find yourself surrounded by the ambience of a traditional Yucatecan home, making you feel like you’re stepping back in time. The friendly and knowledgeable staff will be happy to help you find just what you’re looking for, whether you’re seeking a statement piece for your wardrobe or a beautiful artisan gift for a friend.
To give you a glimpse of the variety available at Casa Tho, here’s a brief overview of some popular items:
|Art & Handicrafts||Yucatan Hammocks, Hummingbird Art, Mayan God Chaac Figure|
|Textiles||Mayan Textiles, Huipil Tunic-Style Dress|
|Clothing||Guayabera Shirts, Huarache Shoes|
As you browse the vibrant selection at Casa Tho, remember to ask questions and learn more about the stories behind each piece. By doing so, you’ll deepen your appreciation for the Yucatan culture and gain insight into the craftsmanship and creativity that goes into producing these exceptional items.
So, when visiting Merida, be sure to add Casa Tho to your list of must-see destinations. Whether you’re a traveler discovering the city or an expat looking to embrace the local culture, Casa Tho is a perfect place to find distinctive souvenirs and immerse yourself in the rich history of Yucatan.
Learn About and Eat Yucatan Foods at Merida Gastronomy Museum
When visiting Merida, you should definitely make time to explore the rich culinary offerings of the region. One exceptional place to start is at the Museo de la Gastronomia Yucateca (MUGY), a unique food museum dedicated to Yucatecan cuisine. Here, you’ll learn about the historical legacy of local dishes, ingredients, and flavors while also having an opportunity to taste them.
Opened in Mérida, MUGY aims to preserve and share the cultural heritage that has created its flavors. Through an interactive experience, visitors can deepen their understanding of the region’s gastronomy and even gain a newfound appreciation for Mexican cuisine as a whole.
|Location||Calle 62 #466 x 55 y 57 Centro, Merida 97000 Mexico|
|Price Range||$0 – $16|
|Special Diets||Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options|
One of the museum’s main attractions is its walking food tours, which take visitors on an exciting culinary journey. These tours guide you through hidden gems and secret spots within Mérida while letting you savor delicious traditional dishes.
Proposed Things to Do in MUGY:
- Participate in hands-on cooking classes to learn the methods and recipes of Yucatecan cuisine
- Learn about the Mayan influence on the local gastronomy
- Taste a wide variety of dishes, from classic Maya dishes to contemporary creations
As you embark on your gastronomic adventure at the Museo de la Gastronomia Yucateca, remember to keep an open mind and embrace the flavors and traditions that have shaped the region’s culinary identity.
Tours and Day Trips
Merida is a city full of history, culture, and natural beauty. It’s an excellent base for exploring the Yucatan Peninsula, as it’s within easy reach of many must-see attractions. If you’re planning your itinerary, consider these popular tours and day trips to make the most of your experience:
Day Trips from Merida
|Valladolid||Colonial Town, Cenote Zaci|
|Campeche||Walled City, Colorful Architecture|
|Chichen Itza||Mayan Ruins, Cenote Ik Kil|
|Progreso Beach||Sandy Beach, Coastal Promenade|
|Celestun||Flamingos, Wildlife, Eco-Tourism|
|Uxmal||Mayan Ruins, Ruta Puuc|
|Dzibilchaltun||Mayan Ruins, Cenote Xlacah|
|Izamal||The Yellow City, Charming Streets|
|Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyche||Abandoned Hacienda, Cenotes|
|Cenotes Santa Barbara||Sinkholes, Swimming, Adventure|
Valladolid and Campeche are two iconic colonial cities, perfect for strolling along cobblestone streets or admiring the vibrant architecture. In Chichen Itza, you can marvel at the ancient ruins and take a refreshing dip in Cenote Ik Kil.
If you’re craving a day at the beach, visit Progreso Beach, where you can sunbathe, swim, and dine at a waterfront restaurant. Don’t miss Celestun to see the famed flamingos and other wildlife in their natural habitat.
For history buffs, the Uxmal Mayan Ruins and Ruta Puuc offer an excellent opportunity to explore well-preserved archaeological sites. You can also visit the less crowded Dzibilchaltun Mayan Ruins and Cenote Xlacah for a more intimate experience.
Izamal, often referred to as “The Yellow City,” enchants visitors with its bright buildings and charming streets, ideal for leisurely walks or browsing the local shops.
For a unique adventure, the Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyche combine history and nature, as you explore an abandoned hacienda and swim in crystal clear cenotes. The Cenotes Santa Barbara also offers an exciting day trip, with multiple sinkholes and swimming spots to choose from.
Remember to plan your tours and day trips according to your interests and schedule, so you can make the most of your time in Merida and its surrounding areas.
Chichen Itza Ruins Tour & Cenote Ik Kil Tour
Visiting Merida and exploring its surroundings is an amazing experience. One of the must-do activities when in the area is taking a tour to the famous Chichen Itza ruins and the stunning Cenote Ik Kil. In this brief section, we’ll briefly outline what you can expect from this amazing day tour.
Chichen Itza is one of the most famous and well-preserved Mayan archaeological sites in the Yucatan Peninsula. You will have the opportunity to learn about and admire the renowned landmarks such as El Castillo or the Kukulcan Pyramid, the Great Ball Court, and the Observatory. Your knowledgeable guide will share fascinating facts about the Mayan history and culture, making your visit even more enriching.
After exploring the Chichen Itza ruins, it’s time to refresh and unwind at the beautiful Cenote Ik Kil. This natural swimming hole features crystal clear waters and impressive rock formations. Jump in for a swim and enjoy the stunning surroundings or take amazing pictures of this natural wonder.
When planning your Chichen Itza Ruins Tour & Cenote Ik Kil Tour, here’s a summary of important aspects:
|Main Attractions||Chichen Itza Ruins, Cenote Ik Kil|
|Transportation||Often included within the tour package|
|Required items||Comfortable clothing & shoes, swimsuit, sunscreen, hat, bottled water|
Remember, while enjoying these breathtaking sites, it’s essential to be respectful of their cultural and historical significance as well as the delicate ecosystem surrounding them. So pack your bag, and embark on an unforgettable adventure through the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza and the enchanting Cenote Ik Kil.
One of the most amazing activities you can do while visiting Merida is to explore the Celestun flamingos. Celestun is a beautiful coastal town located 107km west of Merida and is home to a charming nature reserve where thousands of pink flamingos can be seen all year round.
To see the flamingos up close, you need to book a flamingo tour. You have the option to take a group tour from Merida, which will include transportation and sometimes lunch, or you can choose to rent a car and drive to Celestun yourself. The car drive typically takes around 1 hour and 45 minutes, with well-paved highways throughout the journey.
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|Group Tour||Included||1 day||Lunch|
|Drive Yourself||Rent a car||1 hour 45 min||None|
Once in Celestun, you can book a boat tour to get the best views of the flamingos. The pristine beaches near Celestun are also a fantastic way to spend your day, as they are generally less crowded and more relaxed than other nearby beaches. Enjoy the calm, shallow waters and fine sand as a perfect complement to your flamingo tour.
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Remember, the boat tours in Celestun typically operate from Tuesday to Sunday, 9 am to 5 pm, so plan your visit accordingly. Whether you decide to make it a day trip or stay overnight to explore the area at a leisurely pace, Celestun offers an unforgettable experience to see these beautiful birds and explore the natural beauty of the Yucatan coast.
Uxmal Mayan Ruins Tour & the Ruta Puuc
During your visit to Merida, don’t miss the opportunity to explore the ancient Uxmal Mayan Ruins and the Ruta Puuc. This tour will take you through some of the most important ruins of the Maya culture, all showcased within an 80 km stretch south of Merida.
The Uxmal Ruins are one of the most famous Mayan sites in the Yucatan. Here, you’ll get to see some of the most iconic structures of the ancient Maya world, such as the Pyramid of the Magician, the Governor’s Palace, and the Great Pyramid.
Starting from Merida, you can take a day trip to visit these magnificent ruins. Numerous tour operators offer guided tours, or if you prefer, you can rent a car and drive there yourself.
The Ruta Puuc is a collection of ancient Mayan sites that share a similar architectural style. It includes not just Uxmal, but also Sayil, Labná, Kabáh, and other smaller ruins. You’ll get to explore these various sites along a 41-kilometer network of winding roads through the beautiful Yucatan landscape.
|Uxmal||Pyramid of the Magician, Governor’s Palace, the Great Pyramid|
|Sayil||The Palace, the Great Staircase|
|Labná||The Arch, the Palace|
|Kabáh||Codz Poop, Temple of the Masks|
The adventure along the Ruta Puuc offers not just ancient ruins but also the chance to visit cenotes, caves, and traditional Maya villages. Remember to wear comfortable clothing and bring plenty of water.
In summary, a day spent exploring the Uxmal Mayan Ruins and the Ruta Puuc is a must-do when visiting Merida. This tour will deepen your understanding of the ancient Maya culture and give you the chance to appreciate the incredible architectural achievements of this remarkable civilization.
Dzibilchaltun Mayan Ruins & Cenote Xlacah Tour
Dzibilchaltun Mayan Ruins, also known as Ch’i’y Chan Ti’Ho in Mayan, is an ancient archaeological site located just north of Merida in the Yucatan. With a history dating back to 500 B.C., most of the buildings were constructed between 600 and 1150 A.D. One of the main attractions is the Temple of the Seven Dolls, a religious structure dedicated to Yum Kax, the Mayan God of corn. The temple got its name from seven clay dolls discovered during excavations.
Cenote Xlacah is another must-see attraction situated close to the Dzibilchaltun ruins. As one of many cenotes in the Yucatan Peninsula, this unique water-filled sinkhole is surrounded by lush vegetation and offers a refreshing dip after exploring the ruins.
When planning a visit, consider opting for a guided tour that covers both the ruins and the cenote. These tours often provide additional historical context and interesting facts about the area.
|Temple of the Seven Dolls||Explore the ancient religious structure dedicated to Yum Kax, the Mayan God of corn.|
|Cenote Xlacah||Enjoy a refreshing swim in the natural water-filled sinkhole near the ruins.|
|Guided Tour||Learn more about the history of the area and get insights from knowledgeable guides.|
To make the most out of your experience, please follow some recommendations:
- Wear comfortable shoes and clothing.
- Bring sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun.
- Have a swimsuit and towel handy for a swim in Cenote Xlacah.
- Carry enough water and snacks for the day.
Enjoy your trip to the Dzibilchaltun Mayan Ruins & Cenote Xlacah and make lasting memories in the beautiful region of Merida.
Izamal, The Yellow City Tour
Izamal is a charming town located in the Yucatan Peninsula, known as “The Yellow City” due to its signature yellow buildings with white trim. It’s an ideal day trip destination from Merida, with a rich history as a Maya city and a unique fusion of colonial architecture.
When planning your visit to Izamal, be sure to explore the following attractions:
Kinich Kakmó Pyramid: This ancient Maya pyramid is one of the largest and most impressive structures in Izamal. You can climb to the top for stunning views of the surrounding city and countryside.
Convento de San Antonio de Padua: This 16th-century convent is an architectural gem, known for its yellow facade and serene courtyard. The convent is still in use today, with a small museum and religious artifacts on display.
Plaza Principal: The main square of Izamal is a vibrant and lively space, lined with shops, restaurants, and cafes. It’s a great place to relax and immerse yourself in the local ambiance.
Izamal Market: For an authentic taste of local culture, visit the Izamal Market to find traditional crafts, fresh produce, and delicious Yucatecan cuisine.
Before indulging in the Yellow City experience, you need to know the basic transportation options. Below is a summary table to help you plan your trip:
|Transportation Method||Distance from Merida||Approximate Travel Time||Estimated Cost|
|Bus||66.9 km||1.5 hours||$35 – $85 pesos|
Venturing into Izamal, your day will be filled with memorable experiences as you explore the enchanting corners of this picturesque town. Enjoy the Maya history, stunning architecture, and delicious food that this magical place has to offer.
Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyche Tour
While visiting Merida, one of the top attractions you shouldn’t miss is the Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyche Tour. This fascinating destination offers a captivating experience exploring cenotes and learning about the history of Hacienda Mucuyche.
Booking a tour with Hacienda Mucuyche is quite simple. To ensure a hassle-free experience, book your tour directly with the Hacienda. Pick an available time slot and show up at the Hacienda. English tours are available starting at 9:30 AM and run until 7:00 PM on weekdays.
The tour includes access to two enchanting cenotes amid a historical hacienda. The semi-open cenote, Cenote Zaci, is one of the most famous in Valladolid and requires just a 2-hour drive from Merida. Along with enjoying the tranquil beauty of the cenotes, you can also learn about the history of the hacienda, which was once a thriving sisal plantation in the 19th century.
Here’s a brief summary for your reference:
|Booking||Directly with Hacienda Mucuyche|
|Schedule||English tours start at 9:30 am, weekdays|
|Tour Highlights||Exploring Cenote Zaci and historical hacienda|
|Distance||2-hour drive from Merida|
Remember to pack your swimsuit, sunscreen, and towel, as you’ll get the opportunity to swim and relax in the refreshing waters of the cenotes. Moreover, the tour covers essential safety aspects, ensuring that you can enjoy a comfortable and secure adventure.
In summary, the Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyche Tour offers you a delightful experience in Merida, immersing yourself in its natural beauty and rich history. Make sure to include it in your list of must-visit attractions in Merida.
Valladolid & Cenote Zaci Tour
While you are in Merida, one of the best ways to spend a day is to take a trip to Valladolid and explore the stunning Cenote Zaci. Valladolid is a beautiful colonial city, which is famous for its well-preserved architecture, vibrant culture, and historical charm. In this tour, you will have an opportunity to discover the city and take a refreshing dip in the breathtaking Cenote Zaci.
Cenote Zaci is a magnificent natural wonder, located just a 10-15 minute walk from Downtown Valladolid. This amazing cenote boasts crystal clear waters, cave-like formations, and cliff jumps, making it a perfect spot for swimming and relaxation. Since Valladolid is approximately a two-hour drive from Merida, you can easily plan a day trip to visit the city and the cenote.
|Destination||Activities||Distance from Merida||Duration|
|Valladolid||Sightseeing, cultural exploration||97 miles (156 km)||2-hour drive|
|Cenote Zaci||Swimming, cliff jumping, relaxation||0.6 miles (1 km)||10-15 minute walk|
To make the most out of your Valladolid & Cenote Zaci tour, it is recommended to start your day early and visit some of the city’s notable attractions. In Valladolid, you can explore enchanting churches, plazas, and colorful streets before heading to Cenote Zaci for a revitalizing swim. After indulging in the refreshing waters, you can enjoy a scrumptious meal at the on-site restaurant or explore the local eateries in the city center.
To sum up your trip planning, remember to take into account the travel time, entrance fees, and other necessary preparations for the visit to Valladolid and Cenote Zaci. By doing so, you will ensure an unforgettable experience that combines history, culture, and natural beauty in one exhilarating day.
Cenotes Santa Barbara Tour
A visit to Merida, Mexico, would not be complete without experiencing the wonder of Cenotes. The Cenotes Santa Barbara Tour is an exciting opportunity for you to explore these natural underwater swimming holes and immerse yourself in the beauty of the Yucatan Peninsula.
The tour begins with a journey to the ancient city of Mayapán, where you can climb and explore the stunning ruins, capturing unforgettable moments with your camera. As you delve into the history of this picturesque site, you’ll gain insight into the fascinating Mayan culture.
|Mayapán||Ancient Mayan city with stunning ruins to explore|
Following your adventure in Mayapán, the tour will take you to the Santa Barbara cenotes. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to experience three distinct cenotes – each with its own unique features and charm. You may choose to enjoy a truck or bicycle ride to reach these incredible natural wonders, making your way through the lush local landscape.
|Truck||Start of the Santa Barbara cenotes tour|
|Bicycle||Alternative option for a more active experience|
As you arrive at each cenote, you’ll be able to swim, dive, or simply gaze at the crystal clear waters that lay hidden beneath the earth’s surface. These beautiful underground pools are surrounded by stunning rock formations, creating an otherworldly atmosphere that you won’t soon forget.
|Swimming||Refresh yourself in the cool, clear waters|
|Diving||Discover the depths of these natural wonders|
|Sightseeing||Marvel at the beauty of the rock formations and surroundings|
Embrace the magic of the Yucatan Peninsula with the Cenotes Santa Barbara Tour, where you’ll uncover ancient ruins and swim in the sparkling waters of these stunning subterranean marvels.
Frequently Asked Questions About Things To Do in Merida México
Where is Merida Mexico located?
Merida is the capital of the Mexican state of Yucatan. It is located in the northwestern part of the Yucatan Peninsula.
How far is Merida Mexico from the beach?
Merida is about 22 miles (35 kilometers) from the beach. Progreso is the nearest beach destination and can be reached within a 40-minute drive.
Is there Uber in Merida Mexico?
Yes, you can use Uber service in Merida along with other ride-sharing services.
Is Merida a walkable city?
Absolutely. The city is known for its historic center, Centro Historico, which is easy to explore on foot. Most attractions are within walking distance.
Is Merida Mexico safe?
Merida is considered as one of the safest cities in Mexico. The local authorities maintain strict law enforcement, ensuring the safety of tourists and locals alike.
Is it safe to walk around Merida at night?
Yes, Merida is safe to walk around at night, but as in any city, it’s always best to exercise caution and be aware of your surroundings.
What makes Merida so safe?
The city’s safety can be attributed to its strong sense of community, good police presence, and low crime rates.
Is there an airport in Merida Mexico?
Yes, Merida has an international airport, Manuel Crescencio Rejón International Airport (MID), that offers flights to and from several destinations.
Are there direct flights to Merida Mexico?
There are direct flights from different cities in the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
|Mexico City||Aeromexico, Viva Aerobus, Volaris, Interjet|
|Toronto||Air Canada Rouge (seasonal)|
What’s the best way to get from Cancun to Merida?
The most convenient ways to get to Merida from Cancun are by car, bus, or plane. Driving takes about 3-4 hours, while the bus ride is around 4-4.5 hours. You can also fly, but it can be more expensive.
Should I rent a car in Merida?
Renting a car in Merida can be a good option if you plan to explore the surrounding areas like cenotes, biospheres, and ruins. However, for navigating within the city, it’s quite walkable or you can rely on public transportation.
What’s the best time to visit Merida Mexico?
The best time to visit Merida is between November and April, when the weather is cooler and drier. However, you should also expect more tourists during this period.
What is the hottest month in Merida Mexico?
May is usually the hottest month with average temperatures reaching around 87°F (31°C).
What is high season in Merida?
High season in Merida starts in December and runs until April, when the weather is more comfortable for sightseeing and outdoor activities.
Is Merida Mexico Safe?
Merida, the capital city of the Yucatan State in Mexico, is not only one of the safest cities in Mexico but also across the Americas. As a traveler, your safety is a top priority when visiting any destination. Here we will give you an overview of the safety in Merida and a few key points to remember during your stay.
Safest Neighborhoods: Merida is generally a safe city, but it’s always better to stick to well-established and safer neighborhoods. Some of the popular and safe neighborhoods include Centro, Paseo de Montejo, Garcia Gineres, and Santa Ana.
Traveling at Night: Merida is safe even during nighttime, but it is still essential to remain vigilant and avoid unfamiliar or poorly lit areas. Stick to well-populated, well-lit locations and use trusted transportation options such as registered taxis and Uber.
Travel Restrictions: Travel to Merida is currently open to tourists, and there haven’t been any major travel restrictions in place. However, it is always a good idea to stay updated on the latest travel advisories and restrictions before your trip.
Below is a summary table for quick reference:
|Overall Safety||Merida is one of the safest cities in Mexico and the Americas.|
|Safest Neighborhoods||Centro, Paseo de Montejo, Garcia Gineres, and Santa Ana.|
|Nighttime Safety||Merida is safe at night, but remain vigilant and avoid unfamiliar or poorly lit areas.|
|Travel Restrictions||Merida is open for tourists without major restrictions, but stay updated on travel advisories before your trip.|
In conclusion, Merida, Mexico, is a safe destination for travelers. By sticking to the safest neighborhoods, being cautious at night, and keeping an eye on the latest travel restrictions, you can ensure a secure and enjoyable trip.
As a single woman, I was worried about finding the safest cities in Mexico, the safest place in Mexico to vacation with family, the safest places in Baja California as a tourist, and the safest place, also, in Baja California to live permanently. Baja California is generally safe; it is safer than the rest of Mexico, and the even safer Baja California Sur, which is the safest of Mexico after the Yucatan penisula. This means asking ourselves if Todos Santos is safe or if Rosarito is safe. Also, to come with the family, you have to know the safest all-inclusive resorts in Mexico and the safest all-inclusive resorts in Mexico adults-only.
I have compared and analyzed which is the cheapest and safest place to live in Mexico, meaning to live permanently as a resident, and if you follow my Merida blogs, you know I always recommend the states of Yucatan, Campeche, and maybe Quintana Roo.
Furthermore, I have selected the safest resorts in Mexico within safe cities that offer a semi-closed environment, access control, and safe surrounding areas.
I had the opportunity to eat at some of the best local Yucatan food restaurants, where they have the original Mayan food with ancient Mayan drinks and spices and some fusion dishes representing the new Mexican food.
I have my own list of the best places to visit in Mexico.
I have listed the best mexican holidays and traditions.
I am living in Mexico, in Mérida, located in the heart of Yucatan, and I have been to many cities, mostly this safe city of Mérida Yucatán, Merida is a city with a lot of things to do, a city worth visiting, especially all the things to do in Merida at night, what cheap and fun things to do in the centro (downtown) for those lazy days. A whole different story is living in Merida, which is my personal case.
I describe my visit to the Mayan World Museum of Merida, top of my list of the best museums in Merida, and the free walking tour, for which you can only pay a small tip to the guys who organize it. They are super nice. Also, I have listed my favorite and best restaurants in Merida, Mexico which are not the most expensive ones at all. I will show you taquerías that are way better and cheaper than the upscale Kuuk!
Apart from the typical things to do in Merida, within the city, you have a plethora of day trips from Merida, Mexico. The most famous are the numerous Merida to Chichen Itza tours, day trips to Yucatan pyramids, and Mayan ruins in Yucatan, a peninsula encompassing several states. However, there are enough Mayan ruins near Merida, so you do not need to travel to Quintana Roo to visit them. But it is not only ruins, as there are Yucatan tours that include day trips to the cenotes in Merida, the most Instagrammable places in Mexico.
Regarding accommodations, I listed my best hotels in Merida in terms of price and amenities. I know a couple of haciendas in Mérida, and if you prefer downtown instead, maybe you could enjoy any of the boutique luxury hotels in Merida Mexico.
Traveling inside Yucatan is relatively easy. Renting a car in Merida is almost always the best option. I will explain to you how to easily complete the itineraries: Merida to Cancun and back to Cancun to Merida, also, Merida to Holbox and returning back from Holbox with the ferry to Merida.
The city does not have a beach or a port, but I will show you the best Merida beaches that are very near the city, like Progreso. You should visit at least one of the pueblos mágicos in Yucatan through a tour, such as the famous yellow town.
I have a list of honeymoon destinations along with my curated, shorter list of the best honeymoon destinations. In these couple of years, I put together a list with honeymoon ideas consisting mostly of hotels and all-inclusive resorts, so it is a similar list.
Apart from the duration and the resort packages, the vacation ideas for couples are very similar, and for us, there is a list of curated destinations too.