With 106 municipalities, countless cenotes, beaches, archaeological sites, and haciendas, Yucatán boasts one of the world’s densest cultural landscapes thanks to its ancient and contemporary Maya population. Accept that you’ll never be able to explore it all, but pack in as much as possible with our monthly recommendations for a week-long adventure. Sift through the archives on our website to mix and match your perfect trip!
Arrive to Mérida and check in to The Diplomat boutique hotel. Admire their classic VW Beetle, then let yourself get lost in the colorful architecture and hidden gardens of the city. Enjoy dinner at El Apapacho at Calle 62 x 41, Centro, a secret restaurant full of local flair. At 9 pm, head to La Plaza Grande and indulge in tradition with the performance, “Vaquería Regional.”
Go shopping for fresh flowers and fruit in the market in Santiago, taking in the magical architecture of the church. Grab coffee with coconut water at Manifesto Café to accompany your walk to La Mejorada. Visit the folk art museum (Museo de Arte Popular) and lunch at Los Almendros. Later, shop for hand-made artifacts at Kukul Boutik and 100% México. Discover how long it took each artisan to create the artwork, and if you can’t buy: adore.
Prepare for a two night stay at Río y Mar apartments in Chelem, where you will find the perfect amount of peace and local hospitality. Take a boat tour along the ría and absorb your guide’s knowledge of diverse flora and fauna—not only flamingos. Enjoy a home-cooked meal at The Bullpen restaurant.
With the attitude of a local, prepare for wind and pack a cooler for a trek to Chuburná Puerto. Dwell on the details: homes of sun-burned pastels, gardens adorned with bright flowers and ceramic flamingos, diverse flora on the dunes. Prepare for a breathtaking sunset and stick around to stargaze.
Wake up early to explore archaeological site and cenote, Dzibilchaltún (pack your swimsuit!). Get back to Mérida for fish tacos and a “michelada” at Dzalbay Cantina, snapping photos in front of their colorful murals. Be in the Plaza Grande at 9 pm for the stellar video mapping of the Cathedral.
Travel to the monumental Maya archaeological site of Uxmal, then have an exquisite regional lunch at Hacienda Ochil. At sunset, take in the view at the overlook in Muna. See stingless, indigenous bees and buy melipona honey. Top off the day back in Mérida with one of my favorite nightlife options: La Pulquerida, La Mezcalería or Cara Negra.
Arrive to Valladolid at 10 am for a tour of Casa de Los Venados (house-museum of Mexican folk art), then lunch healthy at Yerbabuena del Sisal before hitting up Cenotes Dzitnup. Saunter through colonial streets to the artisan market in the Plaza Principal, and at 9 pm catch the educational video mapping presentation at the convent.
Por / by Amanda Strickland
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