Merida/Yucatán Peninsula

With the charming city of Merida as my home base, I explored every end of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula a few years ago. For over a week I roamed from coastal Mayan sites to lesser known interior sites, from its gleaming beaches to its eye-opening museums.

HPIM0069.jpeg Ornate and yet unassuming entrance to a small church in Merida

HPIM0076.jpegCarved skulls in the magnificent Museum of Anthropology and History in Merida (with my faint reflection amongst the stony dead)

HPIM0126.jpegThe outmoded Nissan I rented that thankfully never conked out on me as I crisscrossed the peninsula

HPIM0135.jpegA personal obsession of mine: to visit the site where the meteor that, in all likelihood, precipitated the death of the dinosaurs hit. There was really nothing there but a vast valley of pink rock and marshy water, but there was an energy that was undeniable.

HPIM0179.jpegThe Mayan ruins of Uxmal, staggering in both height and grandeur

HPIM0177.jpegThe Jaguar Altar at Uxmal

HPIM0202.jpegThe little known Mayan site of Labná with its regal entrance way (possibly used in ceremonial processions)

HPIM0201 2.jpegA Mayan-built road at Labná

HPIM0199.jpegA mangosteen given to me by a kind man who only spoke Maya.  I can’t say that I loved its flavor exactly, but I’m glad I tried it.

HPIM0222 2.jpegOn the beach of Celestún on the western coast

HPIM0311.jpegMerida’s lush central plaza with the Cathedral de San Ildefonso in the background

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