Mexico continues to attract tourists and headlines and keeps smashing all-time tourism records too.
In 2023, Mexico’s Merida International Airport had its best-ever year in terms of passenger arrivals. A record-breaking 3 million 700 thousand passengers visited Merida, a vibrant city with a rich Mayan and colonial heritage.
Here’s why this stunning city in Mexico is breaking all-time tourism records:
Rich And Fascinating Culture
As the largest city in southeastern Mexico, Merida is packed full of history, culture, and attractions.
It is often referred to as the White City thanks to the beautiful white-stone buildings along Paseo Montejo, but you’ll also find plenty of Mayan ruins and artifacts here too.
That’s why Merida is such a popular destination for history buffs.
It’s a fascinating place to explore thanks to its narrow streets which are perfect for wandering. And Merida is also home to the best museums in the Yucatán Peninsula.
As an added bonus, Merida is an incredibly walkable city, and it’s easy to get from attraction to attraction on foot. You can walk from the Gran Museo del Mundo Maya to the Palacio Canton.
Carve out time to stop and relax in the Plaza Grande which is considered one of the nicest plazas in Mexico. This is a great place to people watch and really immerse yourself in modern Mexican culture.
The Best Of Both Worlds
It’s easy to discount Merida when planning your Mexican getaway because it doesn’t offer the obvious charms of a white sand and crystal blue water vacation.
But if you want a trip that combines the beach and rich Mexican culture, then it is a popular hub.
Although Merida is an inland city it does offer visitors a best of both world experience because it is just 30 miles from the beach. The nearest beach to Merida is in Progreso, and its central location means that Merida makes a great home base to explore the culture and the beaches of Mexico.
Though the beaches in Yucatan Mexico aren’t as popular with tourists as the Mexican Caribbean beaches that you might find in Quintana Roo this is good news if you’re looking for a quiet and laid-back beach experience with fewer crowds.
A Safe Destination
Merida is the capital city of the Yucatan region and this is considered one of the two safest states in Mexico according to the U.S. Department of State.
The U.S. State Department generally categorizes countries into 1 of 4 categories. These range from level 4 ‘do not travel’ to level 1 ‘exercise normal precautions’. For Mexico this categorization is instead broken down by state.
States such as Colima, Guerreroo, Michoacan, and Sinaloa are in the highest do not travel category.
Only two Mexican states are in the lowest ‘exercise normal precautions' category. These are the states of Campeche and Yucatan.
That means that Merida is widely considered to be one of the safest Mexican cities you can visit. Not only that, but Merida was also listed as the second safest city in North America.
Whether you are traveling as part of a group or traveling solo, if you follow normal safety precautions, then you will feel incredibly safe and comfortable when traveling here, and this goes a long way to explain why Merida is exploding in popularity right now.
Temperatures in Merida are hot year-round with daily temperatures average above 29 degrees Celsius (85 F) year-round. Great news if you love the sunshine and want to top up your tan.
But if you want to cool down and beat the heat, then the good news is that Merida is also close to a huge number of deep and blue cenotes that not only look fantastic but are also great for swimming and cooling down.
The closest cenotes to Merida include the 3 Cuzama cenotes, which are often visited together. They are called the cenote Ucil, the cenote Bolonchoojol, and the cenote Chacsinicche.
Alternatively, you could travel to the cenotes in the small village of Homun. The most beautiful of these is the Cenote Yax Bacaltun, which looks unassuming at first but can only be accessed by descending a ladder below ground.
You'll also find incredible rock formations and a fun rope swing.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com
Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.