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Things to do in Mérida

Surrounded by cenotes and bordered by Chichén Itzá, this is the place to kickstart your Yucatán adventure.

Our most recommended things to do in Mérida

From Mérida: Chichén Itzá, Izamal, Valladolid, & Cenote Trip

1. From Mérida: Chichén Itzá, Izamal, Valladolid, & Cenote Trip

Spend a day full of culture, history, and cuisine on a multi-stop guided tour from Mérida to Izamal, Valladolid, Cenote Chichikan, and Chichén Itzá, one of the 7 Wonders of the World. Discover traditional cooking during a live demonstration. Enjoy breakfast, a buffet lunch, and entry tickets. After meeting your guide in Mérida, head to the archeological site of Chichén Itzá. Walk through the center of this thousand-year-old place and see highlights like the Temple of the Warriors. For breakfast, enjoy a packed meal. Later, transport your senses to the root of regional cuisine, one of the greatest legacies of the Mayan culture, during a demonstration of the region’s unique gastronomy. Learn about tradition and innovation in the use of plants, vegetables, and wild fauna. Enjoy a buffet lunch of local products, then let yourself be enchanted by the story and cultural richness of two magical towns of Yucatan during the next stops. Explore Valladolid, known for its natural beauty, cobbled streets, coffee shops, restaurants, and delicious food. Stop at the main plaza for some free time to wander before moving on to Izamal. Learn why the town's houses are all painted yellow and fall in love with its colonial architecture, dating back to the 16th century. Spend time at the main landmark: the Convento de San Antonio de Padua. In between the Valladolid and Izamal stops, seize the chance to take a dip in the cool waters of Chichikan Cenote. 

From Mérida: Uxmal and Sotuta de Peon Hacienda Trip w/Lunch

2. From Mérida: Uxmal and Sotuta de Peon Hacienda Trip w/Lunch

We will begin our trip along the Puuc Route, in the ancient city of Uxmal, declared World Heritage. It is one of the most important cities of the Mayan world together with Chichen Itza. Let us pamper you with an exquisite food. We will move to Sotuta de Peón, where we will tour the hacienda, you can swim in its underground cenote and you will learn about the soda production process based on Henequen.

Merida: Panoramic Sightseeing Tour Bus Ticket with 2 Routes

3. Merida: Panoramic Sightseeing Tour Bus Ticket with 2 Routes

Discover Merida and in a flexible and relaxing way with this hop-on, hop-off bus ticket. Enjoy 2 routes taking you to the city's main avenues, its Cathedral, the historic center, its beautiful parks, and much more, with the ability to join and leave the bus as you wish. Board one of the distinctive red double-decker buses to uncover the city's Mayan and Colonial heritage. Absorb the atmosphere of a place where colonial residences and beautiful architecture rub up against the vibes and movement of a modern city. Hit the top deck and take in the great views throughout your journey. Learn about the city's ancient past, its traditions, and the ongoing Mayan influence on the present from your audio guide as you go. Board the North Circuit to see sights like the Cathedral, Peon Contreras Theater, Santa Ana Park, G. Canton Palace, Flag Monument, Itzimna Church, Las Americas Park, and Plaza Paseo 60. Alternatively, hop on board the Barrios Circuit to see the Cathedral, the San Juan neighborhood, Ermita, San Sebastian, the Merida Zoo, the Santiago neighborhood, Paseo Montejo Avenue, and the Flag Monument. IMPORTANT: The Barrios circuit is temporarily closed until February 6th. The North Circuit is fully open and is also very pretty and interesting.

From Mérida: Uxmal, Hacienda Yaxcopoil and Cenote with Lunch

4. From Mérida: Uxmal, Hacienda Yaxcopoil and Cenote with Lunch

Explore the rich culture and heritage of Mexico on a day trip to Uxmal, Yaxcopoil, and Cenote Peba. Benefit from hotel pickup and drop-off in Mérida, and enjoy a delicious lunch during the tour. After pickup from selected hotels, head to Hacienda Yaxcopoil, a colonial estate. Admire the arched buildings of this country house, wander through the large halls, and see the original furnishings. Stroll in the lush gardens and learn about the hacienda’s history, from its origins to the henequen industry. Continue back in time to the pre-Hispanic era, with a guided tour of Uxmal. Discover the features and architectural style that make this Mayan archaeological site unique. Climb the Pyramid of the Fortune Teller, see the Quadrangle of the Nuns, and enter the Governor’s Palace. Stop to enjoy a delicious meal at a local restaurant, before continuing to Cenote Peba. Cool down with a swim in the beautiful cenote, soak in the natural beauty, and feel the benefits of this mineral-filled water on your skin. At the end of your tour, you’ll be dropped off back at your hotel.

From Mérida: Chichén Itzá and Cenote Tour with Buffet Lunch

5. From Mérida: Chichén Itzá and Cenote Tour with Buffet Lunch

Experience the mysticism of the historic city of Chichen Itzá with a visit to its archaeological site, named one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. Take a detour during your trip to Yucatán and join an excursion from Mérida to learn about history, swim in a sacred cenote, and taste authentic food. Head directly to Chichén Itzá on a bus ride from Mérida. Make the most of your travel time by hearing about the Mayan civilization and its history from your expert guide. Reach Chichén Itzá while it's still early before the crowds arrive and the heat sets in. Admire the perfection of El Castillo, recognized as the masterpiece of the complex. Visit the old field where the pre-Hispanic ball game was played, the Mayan astronomical observatory known as El Caracol, and the Temple of the Warriors. Take some time to explore at your own pace. Up next, taste a delicious Mexican buffet lunch with vegetarian options and recharge energies before heading to your next stop. Discover a beautiful cenote, a natural freshwater pool, where you can swim in its cool waters, sacred to the Mayans. Hop back on the bus and return safely to Mérida.

Mérida Cooking Class, taste of Yucatan

6. Mérida Cooking Class, taste of Yucatan

You start your activity by having a walk through Merida’s Downtown. Your guide will give a quick briefing on the most important buildings overlooking the Main Square, and then walk with you to one of the main markets of Merida, Lucas de Galvez. Your guide will talk in depth about the regional fruits and vegetables, as well as the recados, the achiote, the peppers in general and especially the chile habanero and xcatic. All of this while shopping for everything you need for your traditional family lunch. Once you have everything, take a public bus with your guide to the local hostess’s home for the cooking class. Yucatecan cuisine has one of the most varied arrays of delicious dishes amongst the 32 states of Mexico. Some of them are unique to the Yucatan and very hard to find outside of the peninsula, while others are eaten throughout the country. The influence of ancient Mayans, Spaniards, French and Lebanese are specially noted in the cuisine. While you cook, chop, fry, and get the dishes ready, your hostess and guide will explain some of the local traditions, the influence of other cultures in Yucatan and the differences between the Yucatecos and the people from other parts of Mexico. You will also learn some Spanish and Mayan words while tasting the delicious dishes prepared by yourself! You will enjoy a three course meal, including appetizers, main course and dessert. Beer and soft drinks like hibiscus flower tea, or chaya water are included. Please advise in advance if you are vegan or vegetarian, because there are many dishes you will enjoy! Your experience with Yucatecan cuisine comes to an end after a long chat with your host, and its time to say good bye to your new friends. Your guide will take you in a cab back to Downtown. 

Mérida: 3-Hour Walking Food Tour

7. Mérida: 3-Hour Walking Food Tour

Start the tour by meeting on Plaza Grande, the heart of the city of Mérida. Enjoy a small-group tour of no more than ten people with an expert local guide. Discover the traditional cuisine of the city away from the main tourism hotspots. Start by enjoying some traditional refreshing drinks with your first dish of the day, gorditas. Then, try some grilled poc chuc, a dish of grilled meats prepared in citrus marinade. Next, visit one of the main food markets in town. Taste salbutes, tamales and also try some local fruit. Finish the tour by trying some tacos al pastor and carnitas.

From Mérida: Chichen Itza & Izamal Guided Day Trip

8. From Mérida: Chichen Itza & Izamal Guided Day Trip

Experience the beauty and history of Chichen Itza and explore on a guided day trip leaving from Merida. Learn more about the ancient civilization who built Chichen Itza, take a refreshing swim in a cenote, visit the Temple of Kukulcan, and wander through Izamal. Leave Merida with the guide and travel to the beautiful and historical site of Chichen Itza. Enjoy a two-hour guided tour where you will learn about the history and significance of the site and its most important buildings, such as the Temple of Kukulcan (El Castillo), the ball game court, the Observatory, and its adjacent Temple of the 1000 columns. Take some time to discover the site at your own pace, and admire the monuments and take pictures as you explore. Continue the tour by moving on to the Xcajum Cenote and learn more about the sinkholes that are part of the world's largest network of underground rivers. Indulge in a delicious meal next, and enjoy a variety of local foods. Move on to one of Mexico's most beautiful towns, Izamal. Learn more about the city, known as the "city of three cultures" for its multiple cultural influences. Stroll through the streets and admire the yellow and white buildings for which the town is famous. Finish the tour in Izamal before returning to pickup points in Merida, and relax and enjoy the rest of your vacation.

Full-Day Cuzama Cenote Tour from Mérida

9. Full-Day Cuzama Cenote Tour from Mérida

Visit 3 cenotes on this 8-hour tour: Cascabel, Chaksikin and Pool Cocom. You’ll arrive at the cenotes on board a truck that is typically used to transport agave leaves. The first stop will be at the Cascabel cenote, where you’ll enjoy a swim and admire the natural formations around you. Next is the Chaksikin cenote, known for its deep waters. Enjoy some free time to swim in the underground cave pool. Continue on to the Pool Cocom cenote, which is an open pool that provides the opportunity to take in the beauty of the natural surroundings. The tour ends with lunch at a local restaurant.

From Mérida: Uxmal, Hacienda Yaxcopoi, Cenote Tour

10. From Mérida: Uxmal, Hacienda Yaxcopoi, Cenote Tour

Discover the ancient mysteries of Uxmal, one of the most legendary archeological sites in the Yucatan Peninsula, on a full-day tour from Merida; as you gain insight from your knowledgeable guide, and discover the rich legacy left by the Mayan civilization. Your first stop will be Yaxcopoil Hacienda where you can visit the interior of the hacienda, it has its origin in the parcels on the arrival of the Spaniards, it is usually included houses of important value architecture and other minor buildings focused on the works of the field, built in the age of splendor of green gold. Next visit Uxmal, known to many by way of legend, myth, or anecdote, and visit the pyramid of the Magician, and the Governer’s Palace. Afterward, you will visit a cenote which is an underground type of water deposit, where you can enjoy its crystalline waters.

Available activities

  • Chichén Itzá & Mayan culture
  • Tacos, tamales, & more
  • Cenotes & hacienda estates
  • Yucatán Escapes
  • Mérida eco-tours
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Chichén Itzá

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Other Sightseeing Options in Mérida

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What people are saying about Mérida

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 175 reviews

Superb day with our great guide Jorge who speaks Spanish, English and French. The visit to the magnificent site of Uxmal really seduced us in comparison to Chichen Itza (made with another agency) and Jorge's explanations were very rich and well distributed during the visit! The Sotatu de Péon hacienda is very beautiful and far from the tourist crowds that we had encountered previously. We particularly appreciated the demonstration of the process of transforming Sisal into fibre, using the original machines. To end this day in style, we went by small train pulled by horses to the private cenote of the estate and there were only 2 of us in the water! The cenote is entirely underground and by far the one I enjoyed the most during our stay in the Yucatan. We are unanimous in saying that this day is the most beautiful of our 15 days of visit and we highly recommend this excursion with Jorge!

The tour was excellent, it started at the indicated time. The guide, Mrs. Alma, who we had, speaks perfect English and Spanish and was always very attentive to the tour. Transportation very comfortable and very clean. They welcome you with a box for breakfast and lunch is very good and the place they take you is very interesting.

Chichen is closed at the moment and they offered us the tour to Ek Balam, it is an Archaeological zone where one can climb the buildings, very beautiful, the cenote is beautiful and the buffet is very complete and rich, the visits to the cities are short, but very informative, our Guide Carlos is highly recommended

Ubique activity. Our kind guide was waiting for us at the meeting point, we received clear and punctual info about the itinerary and WOW!, This tour was the Best. All locations , food and amenities were one-of-a-kind.

Great tour- well organised , great tour guide, good driver. A very full day.