Published on December 30th, 2019 | by Michelle Rose0
Merida, Unbordered: Top Things to Do in the Cultural Centre of the Yucatan
Named one of the top travel destinations by our Expert Travellers, Merida is the perfect getaway from the crowds of Cancun and Playa del Carmen. Full of charm and tradition, inventive cuisine and a contemporary art scene, there is much to see and do, despite being off the main tourist route. Expert Traveller Jessica Pong counts Merida as one of her favourite destinations in the world. Here are some of her favourite ways to explore the city.
Take a Walking Tour of the Historic City Centre
There is no better way to get a feel for a city than to hit the ground running – literally. Merida is an extremely walkable city with most of the main attractions within walking distance of each other.
Jess’ Tip: Head to Plaza Grande for a free walking tour of the city. You’ll learn more about the city from a local guide than you ever will from a guidebook. Tours run every morning at 10 am
Visit the Main Squares and Shopping Districts
You can’t leave Merida without walking the Paseo de Montejo, the widest and most glamorous street in the city, lined with trees, museums, boutiques and trendy cafes. Once your feet get tired, head to one of the main plazas to kick back and watch the world go by. You can also pick up an agua fresca or taco from one of the many street carts in the square.
Jess’ Tip: Head to Paseo de Montejo in the morning before it gets too hot. When you’re ready to wind down, the main plazas are connected to Wi-Fi and have complimentary charging stations
Check out a Game of Pok Ta Pok
Each Friday evening in front of the Cathedral in Plaza Grande you can catch a game of Pok Ta Pok. An ancient Mayan ball game that once pitted good against evil with the winner of the match being sacrificed! No sacrifices anymore, but still a wonderful way to experience Mayan culture.
Jess’ Tip: A highlight of my trip and not to be missed. Be sure to arrive early to catch a good seat!
See the Colonial Architecture and Colourful Doorways
Like most colonial cities, Merida is packed to the brim with picturesque buildings with colourful façades. Take a few turns into the side streets to find some of the prettiest doorways you’ve ever seen.
Jess’ Tip: All public buildings in Merida are free to enter. Don’t miss the views from Palacio de Gobierno.
Visit La Terazza Amarilla
This is where you’ll find some of the best tacos in all of Merida. Watch your tortillas be made in front of you as a suckling pig roasts on the spit. You won’t find anything fresher and more authentic anywhere. Choose between four mains and seven different fillings.
Jess’ Tip: Order the cochinita pibil and panuchos!
Address: Av Cupules 503C, Alcalá Martín
Eat at Apoala for Some Inventive Cuisine
Drawing inspiration from both the Oaxaca and Yucatan regions of Mexico, Apoala puts a modern twist on traditional dishes. The cocktails are also some of the best in all of Merida.
Jess’ Tip: Order the enmoladas (stuffed tortillas with mole) and flores de amarillo (zucchini blossoms filled with Oaxacan cheese)
Address: Calle 60 No 471, Parque Santa Lucía
Check out all the Street Art
You can’t turn a corner without seeing local crafts and wall murals. Explore the side streets and local cantinas for some of the city’s best
There’s so much more to see and discover in Merida. Talk to one of our Expert Travellers to help get you started. Call us at 1 877 967 5302, or stop by your local Flight Centre store.