The annual Readers’ Choice Awards have proven once again that Conde Nast Traveler has the world’s most discerning audience, which named Merida the best small city in the world. Situated just 22 miles inland from the Yucatan Peninsula’s northwestern shore, Merida beat out Dresden, Germany; Québec City, Canada; Monte Carlo, Monaco; and Florence, Italy, as well as Puebla, Mexico; Salzburg, Austria; Puerto Vallarta, Mexico; Bergen, Norway and Cologne, Germany in the roundup of the top 10 best small cities in the world recent survey.
A record number of more than 600,000 readers participated in this year’s poll, which asked them to evaluate each city’s cultural and historical sites, as well as the local art, signature dishes and natural beauty. As the capital city of Mexico’s Yucatan State, there’s no doubt Merida has a distinctive artistic flair, boasting endless colorful examples of sumptuous Spanish colonial architecture, alongside breathtaking examples of ancient Mayan history.
1-Day Trips from Merida
"Centrally located on the Yucatan Peninsula, UNESCO World Heritage Sites like the ancient cities of Uxmal and Chichen Itza ruins are an easy day trip, or head 40 minutes north to beaches on the Gulf shore in Progreso", wrote Conde Nast Traveler. "Locals recommend visiting Fundación de Artistas, a nonprofit featuring art exhibits in a 19th-century home; Gran Museo del Mundo Maya, a modern cultural museum; and the traditional Yucatecan food at the super casual Manjar Blanco".
Top Things to Do in Merida
As one of the best cities in the world, it’s not surprising that Merida is brimming with incredible things to do. There are plenty of activities and attractions to suit every type of traveler, from the most discriminating to the simplest of tastes. Here are just a few more of the many truly unforgettable things to do in (and near) Merida, Mexico, that you can’t find anywhere else in the world:
- Tour historic haciendas.
- Take a city walking tour.
- Watch an Ancient Mayan Ballgame (Pok Ta Pok)
- Experience Friday night in Plaza Grade.
- Visit the Lucas Galvez Market.
- Shop Fair Trade Art at Casa De Las Artesanias.
- Dine at the Saturday Slow Food Market.
- Snorkel in a cenote (we love to visit Valladolid).
- Take a trip to Celestun to see the flamingos.
- Visit the Riviera Maya.
Have you ever been to Mexico? Tell us about your trip in the comments!
Would you like to know more about Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula? Read Explore Yucatan State for the Ultimate Mexico Vacation and start to plan the adventure of a lifetime!