Driving in Yucatan is not very hard. Well.. compared to driving in a big
city in the US or any city in India. The highways are quite good except
when going through the villages. Only the "Cuota" or the paid freeways
bypasses the villages en route. Every other form of the highways pass
through them. Most villages are easy to cross as long as you constantly
watch the "topes" (speed breakers), the "peatones" (pedestrians), the dogs,
the cats, the vendors, the cattle, the goats etc. Some villages can be
quite confusing as the roads that you might be driving on, suddenly changes
into an one-way. Getting through these ones needs lot of stopping and asking
You need to know Spanish if you are planning to drive outside of the "Cuotas".
You may just need only "Donde esta..." and "Como puedo llegar..." to ask
for directions. But remember that the answer you get is complicated and
delivered in unadulterated Spanish!
Note that every village is not blessed with a petrol station. There are
maps available which have petrol stations marked on them. These can be
The common way of cheating people at these petrol stations is by not resetting
the reading to 0.0 before filling your tank. It happened to us once in
about 20 visits (to the petrol stations) that we made during our trip. The offending station was
the only available one at Xpujil on the highway 186. Just watch out for
this trick (i.e. assuming that getting cheated to the tune of USD5-10 irritates/bothers you).
Outside of the "Cuotas" most of the highways are two-lane roads (one for
each directions). Given that these are used by tricycles to racing cars, you will have to constantly
overtake(pass) many of the slow moving ones. Note that the locals overload
the left indicator for overtaking i.e. left indicator could mean that
they want you to overtake(pass) or they want to take a left. There is no
way (other than experience and intelligent guessing) to say between the
Unless you are a local, don't attempt to drive during nights. Spotting the hazards on the road is nearly impossible during night. This means that if you are planning to attend the sound and light show, better stay close to the ruins or take a taxi.
In the Mexican cities, blinking green signal means that it is going to
Merida to Izamal 70 km - less than an hour.
Museo Regional de Antropologia, Merida
Palacio del Gobierno, Merida
Museo del Arte Contemporaneo , Merida
Convento de Antonio de Padua, Izamal
Catedral de San Ildefonso, Merida: Although the Cathedral has the second
largest cross in the world, unless you are a church goer, there isn't too
much to see in here. All cathedrals and churches in these parts have been
stripped bare of their goodies during the caste wars.
Museo de la ciudad, Merida
Food (note that this is a Vegetarian point of view):
In many places in Yucatan "sin carne" does not mean vegetarian. This just
means "no red meat" and they will happily substitute beef with ham before
serving. You need to make sure that they understand by "sin carne", you
mean "sin carne, sin jamon, sin mariscos, sin pescados" etc.
Almost all the veggie dishes have cheese. If you are a vegan, God save
We did have problem with veggie food only in one place - Rio Lagartos.
Being a fishing town, they had only salads to offer. Rest of the places
had a decent veggie choices or at least "sin carne" versions of their meat dishes.
Like any typical male, I don't have much insight into this activity nor
can I give good pointers. All I can say is that, this part of the world
is famous for Guyaberas, Hammocks and colourful Sombreros. Sisal (henequim)
is an unique material used in making Guyaberas in these regions - worth
We stayed at the Nomadas Youth Hostel in Merida. We stayed there for three nights. Note that the only room with the attached bath is next to the TV room. So if you want some peace and quite you are better off with a room without an attached bath!