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Cities Mérida (Yucatán)

It seems to me that Mérida wants to be the new Habana... What used to be a colonial pride is now a shabby ruin. Should you wish to take pictures of flaking facades and exhale some smog, then Mérida is your place! The pedestrian walks are very narrow and streets full of old smelly and noisy buses. Actually, if you survive an entire day walk through the city, you are my hero (and I am living in Mexico City!!!).
Thankfully, the Meridians decided to do something about it and last year the main park/square and town hall went through a reconstruction. Lets hope the rest of Mérida will receive the same attention.

Centuries ago, Mérida was an important ceremonial Maya center called T´ho (The fifth place). They fought for almost 15 years against the Spanish conquerors. In 1542 the final battle was lost to Montejo el Mozo (son of Francisco Montejo who initiated the battle).

What here: As I said, the city itself is little inspiring. But you can check the main square, the San Ildefonso cathedral (an oldest cathedral in America) and the house of Francisco Montejo (Casa de Montejo). Otherwise, Mérida is a good place for a exploring the nature reservation with flamingoes Río Celestún or Maya pyramids called Ruta Puuc.

Where to stay:

Budget travelers can try Hostal Nomadas, Posada del Angel (very basic but ok place 2 blocks from the bus terminal, calle 67, tel: 999-923 2754 or Hotel Trinidad. Trinidad has a very unique ambiance, a kind of Alice in Wonderland, but it is slightly worn out (as the rest of Mérida). Price: 150 – 500 pesos (depending on hotel).

If you are not on the budget, I recomend a nice and very friendly place called Luz del Yucatán. Price for room 55 - 89 USD.
How to get here: By airplane or bus. The bus terminal is not far from the city center, but in an ugly neighborhood. Frequent buses come from Campeche, Valladolid and Cancun.