Mérida
Meet the Locals

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Our most recommended Mérida Meet the Locals

From Mérida: Hacienda Sotuta de Peón, Henequen & Cenote Tour

1. From Mérida: Hacienda Sotuta de Peón, Henequen & Cenote Tour

Discover the charming and historical Hacienda Sotuta de Peón on a tour from Mérida by van. Visit the hacienda's grounds, henequen agave fields on a mule drawn cart and learn about its production before seeing and swimming in a cenote with turquoise waters. Leave Mérida behind and immerse yourself in Mexican culture with a visit to the Hacienda Sotuta de Peón. Surrounded by lush gardens, steeped in culture and history, a visit to this hacienda will transport you to back the 19th century. Meet locals at the hacienda and learn why henequen — a form of agave — was called the "green gold" in olden times. Thanks to this green plant, the region of Yucatan became a very rich state. Next, explore the surroundings of the henequen fields with a visit to the hacienda's main house and machine room. Learn about the process of henequen scraping, manual corking, and the laying of fibre. Finally, take a ride in a cart pulled by mules, passing through La Casa Maya and the henequen fields. The cherry on top of this tour is a visit to one of Mexico's natural underground oases — a cenote. Swim in its crystal clear waters to cool off or merely soak up the natural cave formation from the platform. Tuck into local regional snacks at the main restaurant and enjoy some free time to discover parts of the hacienda at your own pace before heading back to Mérida.

Merida: Chichen Itza, Yokdzonot Cenote, and Cooking Class

2. Merida: Chichen Itza, Yokdzonot Cenote, and Cooking Class

Depart Merida in the morning to visit the archaeological site of Chichen Itza. Admire the pyramid of Kukulcan and the surrounding buildings, such as the ball game court and the Observatory. Then, travel to the community of Yokdzonot, and discover it's amazing and unique cenote, which is operated by a cooperative made up of mostly local women. Take a refreshing swim in the blue waters of the cenote and opt to add on activities like zip-lining or rappelling between its vertical walls. After cooling down, participate in a cooking lesson with locals. Prepare delicious Yucatecan dishes like salbutes (deep fried tortillas) and panuchos (stuffed tortillas). Finish your visit with a delicious, traditional meal in the restaurant of the cooperative. Transfer from Yokdzonot back to Merida, arriving at around 5:00 PM.

Full-Day Cuzama Cenote Tour from Mérida

3. 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.

Mérida Cooking Class, taste of Yucatan

4. 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. 

Merida Street Food Walking Tour

5. Merida Street Food Walking Tour

Discover the Yucatecan cuisine! Skip breakfast this morning and visit the main market of Merida as a local. Discover the original flavors of Yucatecan gastronomy. Among cumbia songs, colors and the kindness of their sellers, you will taste seasonal local fruits, spices, juices and the most popular art meals of Yucatan cuisine: panuchos, salbutes, cochinita pibil and much more. While you delight your palate, you will learn about local plants and herbs, the process of making tortillas and the importance of habanero pepper in the Yucatecan kitchen. Then, you will visit a seafood restaurant to try a ceviche, Shrimp or fish tacos and accompany them with a very cold beer. You will end your tour with a dessert at a local Gelato shop with unique flavors like sour orange, bean with pork, bitter chocolate, avocado and flan. The guide will fill you with stories about our customs, traditions, legends and local life in general.

From Merida: Local Cooking Class & Shopping Tour in Tekit

6. From Merida: Local Cooking Class & Shopping Tour in Tekit

Spend the day in Tekit, a traditional Yucatecan village whose daily life revolves around its beautiful church, the market, and some small stores. Join this private tour to become part of the town's daily life by cooking an authentic Yucatecan dish in a local home with a local guide and local people. After pickup at your hotel in Mérida in the morning, travel for approximately 1 hour to Tekit. Upon arrival, head to the mill where corn dough is used to prepare tortillas. Afterward, visit the local market in search of groceries, spices, meat, and vegetables. Once you have all the ingredients you need, you'll go to a local home to start preparing the dish. Once the food is cooking on the fire, visit a Mayan household where you'll be able to interact with the melipona bees and taste their honey. Then, it will be time to savor your meal with handmade tortillas and natural beverages, a real feast. After lunch, stroll through some of Tekit's traditional guayabera (Mexican shirt) and blouse stores. The making of these garments is the main economic activity in the town. Enjoy the opportunity to purchase these garments directly from the producers, and take home a beautiful handmade souvenir of your trip to Yucatan before returning to Mérida.

From Mérida: Chichén Itzá & Cenote Tsukán Guided Tour

7. From Mérida: Chichén Itzá & Cenote Tsukán Guided Tour

Start with pickup from your accommodation in Mérida. Travel to the ancient capital of the Mayan empire, Chichén Itzá, with your certified expert guide. Explore one of the New Seven Wonders of the World and learn more about the fascinating history of the site. Afterward, travel to the nearby Cenote Tsukán which is located amongst beautiful natural surroundings, including many plants and trees endemic to the region. Swim in crystal-clear waters of the cenote and learn more about the Mayan people who lived in the area, as well as their customs and traditions. Enjoy a traditional local lunch and have the chance to meet some of the locals. Then, return to Mérida with drop-off at your accommodation.

From Merida: Private Tour, Mayas from Yesterday & Today

8. From Merida: Private Tour, Mayas from Yesterday & Today

Tekit is a traditional Yucatecan town whose everyday life revolves around the beautiful church, the market, and some small businesses. Join this tour to spend the day with a local cooperative there and discover their daily activities. Enjoy a private tour with a local guide exclusive to your group, and benefit from included hotel pickup and drop-off.  After pickup at your hotel in Merida at 8 AM, drive for approximately 1 hour to Tekit. Once there, make your first stop at a local bakery where you'll prepare and try local bread in a stone oven. Then, walk to a Mayan household where Ana and Manuel will introduce you to the Mayan agroecological systems. Learn about the production of Melipona bees, taste different varieties of honey, and end your visit to Ana's house with a Yucatecan meal. After lunch, visit a guayaberas factory to find out about the manufacturing process, and explore some local stores where it's possible to buy typical clothing and quality garments directly from the producers. Finally, head to the archaeological site of Mayapan, one of the last capitals of the pre-Hispanic Mayan era. The tour concludes with drop-off back at your hotel around 6:30 PM.

From Merida: Honey and Coconut Eco-Tour

9. From Merida: Honey and Coconut Eco-Tour

To start the day, try the delicious Huevos Motuleños at Doña Evelia in Motul's local market. Afterwards, travel to Sinanché Town to learn about beekeeping in Yucatan and the different types of species found in the region, as well as the importance of bees for the environment. You’ll also learn about the honey-production process, taste different varieties according to the type of pollinated plant, and participate in a workshop to create a handmade candle based on products derived from honey. Head then to San Crisanto, a coastal town where the ejido (community-based organization) produces salt and copra on common land, making it a unique tropical landscape primed for exploration. Hop aboard a boat that will take you through the mangrove swamp to an Ojo de Agua (freshwater source); during this beautiful experience, appreciate the diversity and richness of the local flora and fauna, which are essential to preserving the coasts from erosion. Stop then for lunch in a local restaurant. To finish the tour, relax at Sac-Há, a beach area facing the sea and surrounded by coconut palms and white sand. You'll have access to toilets, showers, and public palapas for your comfort during your time spent there.

Mérida: 3-Hour Walking Food Tour

10. 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.

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What people are saying about Mérida

If I could give this ten stars, I would. Our guide, Alejandro, was excellent. I appreciate the cultural immersion this experience provides and the wonderful people we met; Marcos, Jose, and Lorenzo at the Bakery, Manuel and Ana at their house to learn Mayan life, balance with nature and bee keeping/honey tasting, Gloria at her house for an authentic lunch and great conversation, and Alonzo at the Guayabera Factory (you will know how the shirts are made and buy at a much better price than in the city). All of these people were kind, gracious, and genuinely interested in sharing their lives and culture. We are grateful for this incredible experience and the opportunity to learn more about life in this region of Mexico. The visit to Mayapan Archeological Site, in our opinion, was better than visiting Chichen-Itza. The site is well kept, well preserved, and less crowded, absolutely stunning.

Ten stars! We had an amazing time and the food was simply delicious. Our guide Leo was great, he took us to places where as a tourist you would rarley wander to but boy would you miss out. The food was excellent at all the stops and by the end of our tour we were really full. Leo also knew a lot of stuff about the food, Merida or Mexico in general and we had a lot of fun

Our tour guide Eyder was fantastic and we really had a great time with him. Chichen Itza is full of tourists and we had to get an audio book before we arrived to get us round the site, but it was great to see. The best part of the trip was the cenote as it was one of the less visited ones by travel companies and the food there by the corporative was delicious!

100% recommend! Iveth was so helpful and chatty, we really enjoyed hanging out with her. the market was amazing, we could never have navigated it all without her, the bus was easy and the food was delicious! she also bought us some sweets which we picked from the market to take home which was a lovely surprise! book this now!

Great activity to do on Merida! A visit to the authentic market with a Mexican tasting ❤️ our guide was very nice, the cooking class takes place with the locals which makes the moment very intimate it's really pleasant.