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Trip Report

Visit less touristy Yucatan and Quitana Roo

3 weeks escaping mass tourism in Yucatán and Quitana Roo

  • Cozumel+ 9
  • Merida - One of the city's squares with its delicious taco stands
  • Nah-Yah Cenote
  • Visit less touristy Yucatan and Quitana Roo
About Me:Hello, I’m Charlotte a french girl of 27 years old. I traveled 6 months in America Latina after working in marketing and communication for 2 years. My next plan is to discover Asia. read more

North AmericaMexico8 days / August 2022

Highs & Lows

Amazing weather and food!

Too touristic and more expensive.

Itinerary Overview

The Yucatán and Quintana Roo are the most visiting regions of Mexico. You can go from places overrun by huge yachts to more authentic places. It’s also the region known of its thousands of cenotes, that will for sure blow your mind. 

I stayed 3 weeks in these 2 regions, trying to escape mass tourism and I think I did pretty well. If you ask to the good persons, you can find very nice places still unknown. So don’t hesitate to say to your hostel or to the restaurant waiter that you’re looking for places off the beaten track, where Mexicans go for exemple.  

In this article I will share with you my experience in Merida, a nice city in the Yucatan, where from there you can reach different spots. And I will talk about Cozumel, an island in the Quintana Roo, very well known for scuba diving. 

  • 5 Nights: Mérida
  • 3 Nights: Cozumel
Mérida - null


Mérida - null - Merida - One of the city's squares with its delicious taco stands
Merida - One of the city's squares with its delicious taco stands
Mérida - null - Nah-Yah Cenote
Nah-Yah Cenote
Mérida - null - Festivities3+

Merida is a very nice typical city. Quite big but still very accessible with a nice vibes, very good restaurans, museums or galleries to visits. It’s also a good spot to reach others places and visiting beautiful cenotes.

Ask around about festivities of the city because there is different typical show during the week that immerse you in the culture.

From Merida we went to 2 cenotes that I recommend: Nah Yah and Su-hem. Beautiful! Try to create a group to fill a taxi, it won't cost much. We also went to Celestun with a local company bus. There is collectivo, cheaper and faster but very hard to find. There you can enjoy the beach and do a boat tour to see different places and the flamingos. If you like sunset you can spend a night in Sisal, a touristic Mexican seaside village during the weekend. Typical atmosphere!

Cozumel - null


Cozumel - null - null
Cozumel - null - null
Cozumel - null - null3+

When I arrived at the port of Cozumel I was a bit scared as it is loaded with huge yachts and the surrounding area is filled with big chain restaurants and shops.

But fortunately the island hides many more surprises. On arrival at the hotel I was greeted by Katy, an American who has been here for 30 years, who will show you the local life of the island. She is very good at giving advice. I recommend you to rent a scooter because the island is much bigger than you think and also to be able to escape from the tourist spots. Living here has a cost but it's worth it. 

Diving, planetarium, scooter tour of the island, delicious restaurants, sunset... the local part is really great!

The island is also popular for scuba diving. Usually people come here for 1 week to validate their diving certificate. 

Q & A

  • What would you have changed?

    I would have stayed longer in Cozumel instead of going to Isla Mujeres.
  • Restaurant recommendations?

    Poncho Maiz in Merida and K’ooben Laab for Cozumel.
  • Tips you would give a friend?

    To rent a scooter in Cozumel and pass the scuba diver certificate.
  • Packing tips?

    Very hot and sunny so things to protect you and swimwear of course.
  • Transportation Tips?

    Create groups of people to take a cab to go in different places.
  • Any surprises?

    The port when I arrived in Cozumel.


  • Barrio Vivo Hostal : great team, very fancy and private bunk bed, pool and very good free breakfast. 15/20 min from the center but worth it.

  • Amigos Hostel: I recommend it 100%. Super well kept, great pool, great recommendations and very well placed.