DIY Vacation shared their best things to do in Merida with us, featured below. You can see more of their recommendation for the Yucatán Peninsula at https://www.diyvacation.ca/
How to get around Merida
The city has Uber and lots of free WiFi. It’s very easy to bike around. It’s a busy town and safe to walk around.
Why visit Merida
The Capital of the Mexican state of Yucatán, busier than most cities in the region. There are stunning pastel coloured houses. It’s the oldest city in the Americas.
What to do in Merida
- Free walking tour
The tourist information center does a free walking tour every day at 9.30am. Starting at their offices in the main square at Plaza Grande. This is 1.5hr long and I recommend it.
- Eat at La Chaya Maya
The best, tastiest and most authentic tacos. They make the tortillas are made fresh in the restaurant, visible from the street. Try a Chaya juice – so refreshing, a Maya Riviera classic.
- Mayan world museum
Great stop if you have a car. Here you can learn about the Mayan people and their history. I went, it was very interesting to also learn about Chichen Itza too. $20.00 pesos for three hours, you won’t need more time. Around $10.00 pesos for parking.
- Dinner at Mercado 60
Open concept with many different vendors to select from. A really great local social vibe. I recommend the margaritas!
- Ice Cream at Pola Gelato Shop
A recommendation from a local, tried and tested it was great! Close to the main square.
- Explore Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Yucátan
Located in the main square, free to enter and is open late.
- Explore Palacio Municipal de Mérida
In the main square and free to enter. Best to visit during the day to get a great view of the main square and the Merida sign from the top balcony.
- Stroll Paseo de Montejo
Some of the more iconic buildings and monuments in Merida. An avenue named after the Spanish conquistador who founded the city in 1542.
- Ice cream at Dulcería y Sorbetería Colón
A popular ice cream shop to visit while on Paseo de Montejo.
- Anthropology and History Museum
Free on Sundays. A permanent exhibition of Mayan pieces from different regions, all described in detail.
- Murals in Xcalachen
Various walls painted in colorful art work. You’ll have to walk around the neighborhood to see them all – there isn’t one street in particular.
- Horse drawn carriage
This costs around 400 Pesos for 45 minutes. You’ll find them around the main square.
- Sunday morning bike ride
Most lanes are closed on Sundays until 12.30pm. Renting a bike is $2, take ID.
- Museum of Contemporary Art
Free museum in a former colonial palace. Housing permanent and temporary collections exhibiting works by modern & contemporary Mexican artists.
- Cathedral of Merida Yucatan
Located in the main square and built during the 16th century.
- The local market
Lucas de Galvez Mercado is a daily market with cheap fruit juices (half liter for 20 Pesos). You’ll also find fruits, vegetables, handicrafts and electronics.
- Attend the Pok Ta Pok Ball Game
Watch free reenactments of the ancient tradition with costumed players. Located at the Cathedral every Saturday at 8.30pm. Pok ta Pok is a kind of Maya football played as a ceremony for centuries.
- Dance performers at Santa Lucia Park
Dancers perform a traditional dance Thursdays at 9:00pm in Parque Santa Lucia for free.
- Visit the theater
Boletos De teatros Merida is a popular activity with the locals and the performances are in Spanish. You can buy tickets for 200 Pesos.
- Monumento a la Patria
At the end of Paseo de Montejo, a large monument from 1956 by a Colombian sculptor. Built to bring people together.
- Visit the ruins
You must visit a wonder of the world while in Merida, it is closeby to Chichen Itza. Entrance fee is around $250 pesos. Parking is very easy (assuming you’re early in the day), costs about an additional $30 pesos. You can get a personal guide for an additional $1,000 pesos for about 2 hours. Although I must admit I find Uxmal even more breathtaking due to the sheer size in comparison.