Most visitors of the Yucatán peninsula go straight to the beaches of Cancún or Playa del Carmen. Why am I so enthused by the colonial city Mérida?
Our way to Mérida
This year Chris and me visited Mexico for the first time. As we had some safety concerns, we did something we never do: We booked a package holiday. But our choice wasn’t bad at all: Our all-Inclusive-Hotel “Kore Tulúm” turned out to be very different from the common large concrete hotel. It was a wonderful wellness resort and retreat in a quiet corner of Tulúm. The buildings were flat and bricked in authentical Yucatecan style, located in a wonderful tropical garden, which felt like a jungle. The resort, which offered Yoga, meditation and vegan food was on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea with its various green color shades. Whenever I imagine a pleasant location since then, it’s this one. Despite the paradise of Tulúm we wanted to explore the Yucatán peninsula deeper. We hoped to experience the real Mexico or at least parts of it.
A wonderful vegan hotel
We found the Hotel Medio Mundo by chance via a booking platform. There were two reasons to choose it: On the one hand, it can be tough, to find vegetarian food in Mexico and nevertheless have a balanced meal. On the other hand we were sensitive regarding safety and didn’t go out at night. In this sense this hotel with it´s vegan restaurant was the perfect choice. The hotel restaurant came with an atmospheric patio which made it even more attractive. Nothing is more appealing than a night within these surroundings. Here it’s totally acceptable not to go out at night. But also in the daytime the picturesque hotel looked fantastic building with it intense colors.
I loved wandering slowly in the patios and its colonial columns with my camera so much that I almost missed the dalight for a tour through the city. As it was already quite late due to lingering and late check in (in Mexico you have to be patient or will learn patience, we concered the streets in time during the golden hour, which is not bad at all in terms of taking architectural photos.
In the Caribbean world there are lots of colorful cities. Mérida, however, is especially beautiful and has a unique atmosphere. The rows of houses with their large windows reminded me of colonial Cuba. In contrast to Cuba, in Mérida everything is preserved better and the streets are quite clean. In many corners you can find attractive hotels or patio restaurants hidden behind the multicolored houses.
Mérida achieved prosperity by producing sisal. The numerous stately viallas reveal this wealth. The large Haciendas outside the city also make the glorious past visible. You can have a great overview on the architectural splendor of Mérida walking along the long and broad Boulevard Paseo Montejo. This city is a brilliant place for architectural buffs like me. I found the combination of villas and colorful houses particularly appealing.
Life on the Plazas
We were lucky to be in Mérida on Good Friday. On this day an impressive procession takes place. It reveals Mérida’s Spanish heritage. People carry a large Jesus figure with a black head. To our mind the figure looked surprisingly scary. The procession is only an example of the many events on Méridas squares. On these green “islands” you can feel the heartbeart of the city. Here is the center of social life. It’s very pleasant to linger here and enjoy the mediterranean feel under palmtrees.Even WiFi is available there. Conclusively I fell in love with Mérida because of the mixture of mediterranean lifestyle and beautiful architecture I found there.
What else does Mérida offer?
This is what we experienced in Mérida. In this city, however, you can do much more e.g. learning Spanish. I wish I could have improved my Spanish skills there, but unfortunately I didn’t have the time. If you are interested in culture, you can watch people dancing on the squares in the evening. This is something I already found very inspiring when visiting Cuba. I love this about the Latin American culture. In Mexico people celebrate life. You can see this in flamboyant arts, music and dance. Mérida is a wonderful place to learn more about this.
Transparency: This article was written without the support of third parties and is explicitly no advertising. Mentions of links is based on my voluntary decision.