Whenever there is any list from a trusted source recommending the best places to visit in the world, you can bet that Mexico will appear on it somewhere.
Such is the case for Travel Lemming’s newest report boasting that Yucatan is the number one place to be in 2024, beating strong standouts such as Turkey and Spain.
Ever growing in popularity, this incredible destination surpassed Giza in the Solomon Islands, Stavanger in Norway, Antigua in Guatemala, and Memphis in Tennessee, which held the first places on the list.
Yucatan is currently experiencing tourist numbers that are about 55% higher than compared to the same period last year, with numbers before the COVID-19 pandemic seeming like a distant memory (thank goodness, right?)
These numbers are not without merit, of course; Yucatan has a variety of ecosystems, culture, and cuisine, adventures like no other, and beaches that will blow your socks off!
The report states that it is a place to “discover beaches free of tourists and algae, ancient pyramids and underground swimming pools that the Maya believed were gateways to the underworld.” That sounds about right…
So, what is the magic sauce that is making Yucatan THE place to be in 2024?
The interest of tourists in the region’s ‘magical towns’, awarded the coveted status for being historically, culturally or environmentally significant to Mexico, seems to be unwavering, with places like Merida and Valladolid seeing impressive numbers this year.
@grassjellyprincesss the best things to do in Merida, Yucatan🌻 1. Visit a local market! There a tons around the city, and i went to the San Benito market 2. Merida is perfect for day trips! Just one hour away from the city is Homun, a town that is known for its cenotes! The most famous cenote there is the Santa Barbara Cenote, which has admission to 3 for around $20 3. Finally, i would reccomend you to try some local Yucatan dishes such as the cochinita pebil or sopa de lima🍋 The Musuem of Yucateca Gastronomy serves many regional dishes and is famous for being part musuem and part restaurant! #merida #meridayucatanmexico #mexicotravel #yucatan #travel #solotravel ♬ Me gustas tú – Tbp🙏🙏🙏
Both of these destinations have a rich blend of colorful colonial buildings and traditional architecture, with history bursting from its seams, painting a rich tapestry of a life and times far different from ours now.
They also offer delectable cuisine options, both with entirely different menus unique to their town, with tastes and dishes that will not be able to be found in any other part of Yucatan and served by the friendly communities that live there who are more than happy for your custom, keeping their Mayan heritage intact.
@wanderinggwild Day in the life backpacking Mexico: Valladolid 🇲🇽 We LOVED Valladolid – a small colonial town in the centre of the Yucutan Peninsula that serves as the best base for places like Chichen Itza, Ek Balham and loads of amazing cenotes! The cenotes here are also SO much cheaper than the ones near Tulum! The town is gorgeous too…do not miss Valladolid on your Mexico itinerary! #valladolid #mexico #backpackingmexico #chichenitza #backpacking #travel #traveltiktok #viral #foryou #wanderlust #bucketlist #bucketlistdestinations ♬ Pumpin Blood (The Jane Doze Remix) – NONONO
Merida has actually been named as the safest city in Latin Mexico, with Yucatan named as the safest state, meaning tourists feel at peace when they come here, unworried by the low levels of crime that are reported in these areas.
Now, with the incredible Maya Train beginning operations next month, magical towns such as these are set to become ever more popular, as more tourists will have connectivity like never before and in turn bring even more business to its locals.
It should not be taken lightly that Yucatan offers much more than just a beach vacation that so many other destinations offer as well.
Yes of course, the beaches in Yucatan are literally some of the best in the world, and we will get into that in just a minute, but tourists have a plethora of other activities and adventures on their doorstep that are highly recommended checking out when you visit.
Number One on your list has to be the breathtaking UNESCO World Heritage site of Mayan pyramids known as Chichén Itzá.
Considered as one of the new Seven Wonders of the World, this incredible historic site dates back to before 600 A.D, and is still intact today for tourists to marvel at.
It has just recently opened a second part of its site, Chichén Viejo, which had previously been closed for decades, and is constantly finding and uncovering new treasures for the world to see.
Located not too far away from Chichén Itzá lies other fascinating sites known as Cenotes (mostly underground sinkholes, often filled with crystal blue water), which are actually littered all throughout Yucatan.
These natural wonders are visually stunning, believed to have been in use during the Ancient Maya period for ritualistic purposes, and can now be enjoyed by all as a cool place to swim and escape the hot Mexican sun, as well as get a pretty cool picture for your social media!
With so much more on offer, from environmental parks and reserves to underwater museums, as well as jungle tours, expeditions, and even food-tasting events, there is something for absolutely everybody here.
Ok, The Beaches…
Last but not least, of course, the beaches in Yucatan have got to be one of the top draws for tourists because they are simply out of this world.
If you’re looking for white sands and the bluest of blue ocean waters, Progreso and El Cuyo are going to be on your bucket list when you visit because they offer exactly that.
Unlike the busy and somewhat overcrowded beaches in Quintana Roo, El Cuyo and Progreso offer that more tranquil, peaceful paradise vibe and are perfect for lazing around all day long.
Lovers of watersports such as snorkeling and scuba diving will be in heaven here, once again free from the busyness of tourists, making it the ultimate water playground!
Now that Sargassum season is finished, you are guaranteed those long stretches of sugary-white sandy coastlines that you’ve been dreaming of!
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