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Mérida, the capital of the state of Yucatán has a rich Mayan and colonial history. Mérida has a Centro Histórico typical of colonial Spanish cities, and modern urban sprawl spreading to the northern coast and inland through former agave fields.

Mérida has the largest concentration of indigenous people of any place in Mexico.

The city's focal point, the Plaza de la Independencia, is bordered by the Mérida Cathedral, a colonial-era church built from remnants of Mayan temples.

Mérida has one of the largest centro histórico districts in the Americas. Colonial homes in various states of disrepair and renovation line the city streets to this day.

The historical center of Mérida is currently undergoing a minor renaissance as more and more people are moving into the old buildings and reviving their former glory.

The New Merida City Museum is housed in a former mansion.


Artwork at the City Museum demonstrates the economic and cultural history of the area.

The Governor's Palace on Plaza Grande showcases the grandeur of 19th Century Mérida.


The walls of the Governor's Palace are covered with 31 murals by Fernando Castro Pacheco depicting important events in Yucatan's history.

The style of Victorian Mexican life can be viewed at Casa Montejo. At the turn of the 20th century, Mérida housed the most millionaires in the world.

The concentration of wealth can be seen in the homes along Paseo de Montejo which have now been converted to banks, museums, restaurants or guest houses.

The Arco de San Juan is one of three colonial arches that demarcate old Merida.


The Motherhood statue in Parque Maternidad anchors an artisans' plaza.

A sculpture garden at the Pasaje de la Revolucion marks the entrance to the Museum of Modern Art. 

The Church of Jesus or the Church of the Third Order was built by the Jesuits in 1618.

The Casa de Montejo, a 16th Century mansion, is a landmark of colonial plateresque architecture.

The Museum of the Mayan World is architecturally stunning and conveys valuable information about Mayan cultural identity and  achievements.

Displays include numerous artifacts and reproductions of important Mayan sites.

Yucatán food is distinct from the recognized Mexican cuisine, influenced by Mayan, Caribbean, European and Middle Eastern flavours.

These were the ladies preparing the fresh tortillas in our favourite restaurant, Chaya.

Mérida is home to a Church of Latter Day Saints Temple.

There are regular performances of traditional Yucatán music and dance, considered an important part of everyday life.

We were fortunate to be there during La Noche Blanca festival, which featured street concerts by the philharmonic orchestra, rock and jazz bands, the ballet, and various theatre troupes.

With 8 museums, 6 cultural centers, and multiple galleries, Mérida is recognized as a center of art and culture.

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This site was last updated 10/10/21