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  • The city ofrida is the capital of the Mexican state of Yucatan.

  • While much of the peninsula is famed for its resorts,

  • Meérida is the epicentre of Yucatan culture,

  • history, and, Mayan pride.

  • At the city's heart is Plaza Grande.

  • This relaxed square is surrounded by some of the city's most beautiful buildings,

  • many built from the sun-baked stones of the great Mayan temples which once stood here.

  • Facing the square is Merida's oldest building,

  • Casa de Montejo, built by the city's founding Conquistador.

  • Step inside the shady courtyards and lavish interiors of this residence,

  • home of the Montejo dynasty for over four centuries.

  • Just across the square risesrida Cathedral,

  • whose massive altarpiece symbolises the eventual reconciliation

  • between the Maya and the Spanish peoples.

  • Right next door,

  • discover modern sculptures, at the Contemporary Art Museum,

  • which proudly displays works by some of the region's most popular and thought-provoking artists.

  • Radiating from Plaza Grande are pastel streets filled with architectural treasures and cool parks.

  • Just a block away, relax with locals in Hidalgo Park,

  • an oasis surrounded by cafes, restaurants and charming hotels.

  • From here it's just a few steps to The Jose Peon Contreras Theatre,

  • the home of the Yucatan Symphony Orchestra.

  • In the late 1800s, Yucatan became the centre of henequen production,

  • and Merida fast became one of the world's wealthiest cities.

  • Take a walk up Paseo de Montejo,

  • an avenue inspired by the great boulevards of Paris,

  • where Yucatan's elite built their stately homes.

  • Pay a visit to Casa Montes Molina,

  • a mansion preserved down to its very last detail,

  • and experience the scents and patinas of a bygone era.

  • rida is filled with windows into the past, including its many museums,

  • which cover everything from Yucatan song to the folk arts of Mexico.

  • Just a short walk south from Plaza Grande is the Museum of The City of Merida,

  • which charts the rich and sometimes turbulent history of Yucatan's capital.

  • Once the residence of a former governor and general,

  • Palacio Cantón is now home to Yucatan's Anthropology and History Museum.

  • While nearby, the Great Museum of the Mayan World

  • creates a striking contrast torida's historic streetscapes.

  • The building was inspired by the form of the sacred ceiba tree,

  • which the Maya believed was a bridge to the heavens and the underworld.

  • Inside, its collections are the perfect gateway to a civilisation,

  • which has long captured the imaginations of explorers and anthropologists.

  • One such adventurer was the Englishman, Frederick Catherwood.

  • Step into the explorer's historic residence to see his lithographs of lost Mayan cities,

  • which when published in the 1800s,

  • created a sensation all over the world.

  • When it's time to take your own Mayan adventure, hit the road.

  • Just ten miles north ofrida, are the Dzibilchaltun Ruins.

  • Or take the forty-minute drive south to Mayapan,

  • the Mayan capital from the 13th to the 15th centuries.

  • The deeper you venture into Yucatan, the greater the reward.

  • An hour's drive southwest from Mayapan are the hills of Puuc.

  • Here you'll find the incredibly ornate ruins of Uxmal,

  • where the Pyramid of the Magician looms high above the expansive Governor's Palace.

  • In Yucatan, all roads eventually lead to Chichén Itza,

  • the most famous of all the Mayan cities.

  • Walk across the blood-soaked ball court, where opposing teams literally played for their lives.

  • Wander through a forest of stone at the Court of a Thousand Columns.

  • Then, let your gaze climb the staircase of El Castillo,

  • and you'll soon appreciate why these ancient ruins are considered one of the world's great wonders.

  • The heat and humidity of Yucatan can be fierce,

  • so when the Mexican sun starts to climb,

  • escape underground into the incredible caves of Calcehtok.

  • The Yucatan Peninsula has also been blessed with an incredible network of over 6000 cenotes.

  • For the ancient Maya, these clear subterranean pools provided water for their cities.

  • And some, such as the Sacred Cenote of Chichén Itza,

  • were considered portals to the afterlife.

  • Today, many of these cenotes are the perfect place to cool off.

  • But of course, there's nowhere better to wash away the Yucatan dust than back inrida,

  • one of the most cultural, historic and coolest cities in all of Mexico.

The city ofrida is the capital of the Mexican state of Yucatan.

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Merida Vacation Travel Guide | Expedia (4K)

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    Eric Wang posted on 2018/02/09
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