Mérida Things to Do

  • Things to Do
    by TravellerMel
  • Things to Do
    by TravellerMel
  • Things to Do
    by TravellerMel

Most Recent Things to Do in Mérida

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    Teatro Peón Contreras

    by TravellerMel Written Dec 6, 2013
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    Teatro Peón Contreras, the city's grand opera house, opened in 1908. The theater was renovated in 2011 with a new stage and updated air conditioning. Even if opera, symphonies, and ballet aren't to your taste, the building is still worth a look for it's impressive Art Deco architecture. There is an art gallery downstairs with changing exhibits.

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    Patria Monument in Paseo de Montejo

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    Patria Monument in Paseo de Montejo
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    When driving down on Montejo Drive you will find a very famous monument that is dedicated to the nation, the Monumento a la Patria.
    It tells the story of the Yucatan and the country throughout its carved stone surfaces. It is a masterpiece that every visitor must see.
    Unfortunately I saw it only out of a bus window.

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    Parque Hidalgo

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    Walking along Calle 60 you will see the Parque Hidalgo close to the Jesus Church and the Peon Contreras Theater.
    It was originally named after Manuel Cepeda Peraza (Military officer and Governor of the State 1828 - 1869). Later the name was changed to honor the Priest Don Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla.
    You will see the monument devoted to him.
    Hidalgo Park is also one of the best places to take part in Merida’s Carnival or Fiesta Saturdays.

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    Iglesia and Park Santa Ana

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    Iglesia and Park Santa Ana
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    The Santa Ana Church was built and consecrated in 1733. It has a Latin cross pattern on an atrium, built apparently where the Maya religious structure had stood.
    The Parque Santa Ana was formed at the initiative of Governor and Captain General Antonio de Figueroa and Silva Lazo de la Vega, to designate an area of dwelling for the indigenous people, starting in the 18th century, on what had formerly been a Mayan village.

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    University of Yucatan-Merida

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    University of Yucatan-Merida
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    The University of Yucatan-Merida is another attraction when you are walking along Calle 60 across the Teatro Jose Peon Contreras. I found it occasionally because the door was open I entered and saw a beautiful yard that I could compare with the Royal Palace in Mexico City.
    The modern university was established in the 19th century by Governor Felipe Carrillo Puerto and General Manuel Cepeda Peraza. You will see a wonderful mural devoted to them at the second floor. Calle 60 Barrio de la Madre

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    Teatro Jose Peon Contreras

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    Teatro Jose Peon Contreras
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    The enormous bulk of the Teatro Peón Contreras is located at Calle 60 to the North of the Iglesia de Jesús. It was built between 1900 and 1908, during Mérida’s henequén heyday.
    It boasts a main staircase of Carrara marble, a dome with faded frescoes by Italian artists, and various paintings and murals throughout the building.

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    Iglesia de Jesús

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    Iglesia de Jesús also called Iglesia de la Tercera Orden was built in 1618 by Jesuits.
    It’s located at the beginning of Calle 60 close to the Cathedral de San Ildefonso. Its west wall is facing Parque Hidalgo.
    The church was built from the stones of a destroyed Mayan temple that once occupied the same site and you can see two stones still bearing Mayan carvings.

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    Calle 60 and Paseo de Montejo

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    Calle 60
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    Merida has a Centro Historico typical of colonial Spanish cities. The street grid is based on odd-numbered streets running east/west and even-numbered streets running north/south, with Calles 60 and 61 bounding the "Plaza Grande" in the centre of the city.
    The more affluent neighborhoods are located to the north and the most densely populated areas are to the south. The Centro Historico area is currently undergoing a minor renaissance as more and more people are moving into the old buildings and reviving their former glory. It is becoming increasingly popular with American who are rescuing and restoring the classic colonial structures.
    The famous avenue Paseo de Montejo is lined with original sculpture.

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    Casa de Montejo

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    The Casa de Montejo is among the oldest and beautiful buildings in the Historic Centre. It was built in 1540. It’s located on the south side of the Plaza Grande.
    It originally housed soldiers but was soon converted into a mansion that served members of the Montejo family.
    You may take a close look at the facade, where triumphant conquistadors with halberds hold their feet on the necks of generic barbarians.
    There is a bank inside it nowadays.

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    Cathedral de San Ildefonso

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Updated Mar 9, 2013

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    Cathedral de San Ildefonso
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    The severe Cathedral de San Ildefonso is located on the plaza Grande’s east side on the site of a former Maya temple. It is the oldest cathedral on the continent and one of the top Merida attractions. It was built between 1561 and 1598 using stones from ruined Mayan pyramids and temples.
    The interior is sparsely decorated and a crucifix behind the main altar symbolizes the reconciliation of the Spanish and Mayan heritage of the city.
    The massive crucifix behind the altar is Cristo de la Unidad (Christ of Unity), a symbol of reconciliation between those of Spanish and Maya heritage.
    Open hours: 6.00-12.00 and 14.00-19.00.

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    Palacio Municipal

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    Palacio Municipal
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    Mérida’s Palacio Municipal is located across the square from the Cathedral de San Ildefonso.
    It was built in 1542. But later it was twice refurbished, last time in the 1850s. Attempts to create a modern exterior for the building were halted by government order, to preserve the colonial character of the plaza.
    The ultramodern interior serves as a venue for music and dance performances, as well as other exhibitions. Schedules for performances and frequent film showings are posted outside.

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    Palacio de Gobierno

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 9, 2013

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    The Palacio de Gobierno is located on the north side of the Plaza Grande. It houses the state of Yucatan’s executive government offices (and one of its tourist information centers).
    It was built in 1892 on the site of the palace of the colonial governors. Interior of the government palace building decorated with murals by Fernando Castro Pacheco.
    Completed in 1978, they were 25 years in the making and portray a symbolic history of the Maya and their interaction with the Spaniards.
    Unfortunately I didn’t see them. A few chances to find myself in Mérida once again…

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    Parque Principal (Framcosco Canton)

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 8, 2013

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    Parque Principal
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    The Zocalo includes the Parque Principal.
    Merida has the highest percentage of indigenous persons of any large city in Mexico with approximately 60% of all inhabitants being of the Maya ethnicity. You will see a lot of people at the Zocalo. I spent half an hour sitting at the bench and watching people walking along the park.

    You can watch my 2 min 17 sec Video Mexico Merida part 2 out of my Youtube channel or here on VT.

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    Zocalo or Plaza Grande

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Mar 8, 2013

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    Zocalo or Plaza Grande
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    Merida is the largest of the four cities of the world that share the name Mérida. The other three being in Spain, Venezuela and the Philippines.
    Merida’s historic center or Centro historico is the second largest in Mexico (after Mexico-City). You will find there a lot of buildings, including those on and around the Zocalo or Plaza Grande. They were built during the colonial period through the XVIIIth and XIXth centuries.
    Italian and French style architecture is common in the city center.
    The city has also heavy Mayan and Spanish influences.

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    Historic Center Tour

    by draguza Written Feb 13, 2012

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    The quickest way to get to know Merida's Historic Center is by joining the free, guided walking tour of downtown highlights, which is thorough, enjoyable and saves you the cost of hiring a private guide. The tour lasts 1¾ fact-filled and enjoyable hours and begins at the city tourism office located under the arches of City Hall – the Palacio Municipal, which is located on the west side of the Main Square. An experienced bilingual guide leads the group to Merida's most significant historical sites, sharing anecdotes in Spanish and English – depending on the day there might be only a few other travelers in your group or an entire horde of curious tourists. Among the landmarks visited are the Palacio Municipal itself, Main Square, Palacio de Gobierno, Cathedral, MACAY contemporary art museum, Pasaje de la Revolucion, the City Museum, and Casa de Montejo – the striking home of Merida's founder.

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