Mucho Calor!

Our great long-time friend from London, Richard, is staying with us for a week, so loads to catch up on and reminisce about – the ‘good old days’ when we were all last here in Mérida, some 30 years ago.  Ants and I have been here in Mérida for 5 weeks now (with 6 more…

Celestún

Celestún is a sleepy sun scorched fishing village located on the sea-facing side of a vast narrow peninsula fringing the Gulf of Mexico, and nudging right up to the Campeche state border. It’s surrounded on one side by the the Ría Celestún Biosphere Reserve and, on the other, by the Reserva de la Biósfera Los…

A Flamboyance of Flamingos

On a blistering hot day of 38 degrees in Mérida, we made for the coastal village of Celestún, its clean beaches and vast wetland lagoon, known as the Ría Celestún Biosphere Reserve, at 146,000 acres, the largest estuary in the Yucatan.  Our trusty driver José Luis drove us the hour and a half out of…

X’calachen

X’calachen (Sh-cala-CHEN) is a rather down-at-heel dusty barrio next to the Cementerio General and was once best known for its many Chicharronerias or Chicharron (pork crackling) stalls. Sadly, due to the lack of economic opportunity, these once thriving outlets have fallen victim to decay and closure. But in recent years, as the spread of urbanisation…

Bici Ruta Mérida

Sundays are generally super quiet in Mérida, especially on a hot day like today. But then every day here is a hot day. Sunday is also a day for family. If you haven’t jumped on the AutoProgreso to the coast, like many families do, you may find yourself meandering amongst family groups from shop to…

Cementerio General – Midday In The Garden of Good and Evil

What better place to uncover the bones of a city than its general cemetery (if you pardon the pun, that is). We’ve always been fascinated by and drawn to cemeteries, particularly in Latin America. For here they really do know how to commemorate and celebrate the dead. In Buenos Aires you have the elegantly over…

Las Tiendas – Numero Dos

After the fruit market you’ll find yourself increasingly surrounded by shoes of all types (Nike knock-offs, that sort of thing – not much leather in evidence) but what we were looking for were traditional Huaraches, hand-braided leather sandals (stitched to soles made from old car-tyres). After asking around we were finally taken to the Huaraches…

Las Tiendas – Numero Uno

Shopping in Mérida, the smells, the colours, the tastes, the sounds and the sights all challenge the senses –  particularly in and around the city’s largest market, Mercado Lucas de Galvéz.  The downtown streets around the mercado are packed by mid-morning with everyone (and I mean everyone) masked-up and going about their business. There’s so much…

I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside

After a day of rain, the clouds cleared and another blisteringly hot sunny day dawned. Mérida bakes in the midday and afternoon heat so we headed early to Progreso, about an hour away on the Gulf Coast where it’s much cooler and often with a stiff breeze – perfect conditions for marauding gangs of sea…

Esquinas de Mérida (Corners of Mérida)

Another riff on ‘Don’t look up’, but in this case, ‘Do look up’. For high on some street corners you’ll often see a red and white plaster plaque with a whimsical image. Animals, people, household Items, unique events or legends that relate to that very place.  When the Spanish colonised Mérida they laid the city…