Getting to Merida from Isla Holbox

Getting to Merida from Isla Holbox first involves catching a ferry to Chiquilá, then a bus from Chiquilá to Merida.

Ferry tickets can be purchased from the Holbox Express office/counter in town and cost us 220 MXN each. Ferry from Holbox to Chiquilá takes around 30 minutes.

The ADO bus station is walking distance from the port in Chiquilá. Tickets from Chiquilá to Merida were purchased ahead of time from their web site, and cost us 488 MXN each. Bus ride to Merida took around 5 hours.

How much time do you need in Merida?

We spent one full day in Merida. One day can feel a little crammed but we managed to see and visit everything we had planned for our stay.

Things to do in Merida

Mayan World Museum

The Mayan World Museum in Merida is a must if museums are your thing. We spent at least 3 hours in the museum and learnt a lot about Mayan history and culture through multilingual exhibits and interactive presentations. The building itself is quite impressive too.

We caught an uber from the city centre to the museum which cost us 79.95 MXN. Entrance to the Mayan World Museum cost us 150 MXN each.

Mayan World Museum, Merida and Uxmal


Apart from wanting to see the city itself, close proximity to Uxmal was another reason we wanted to visit Merida. 

Buses to Uxmal leave from TAME bus terminal in the city and we used the SUR bus to get to the ruins. Tickets were purchased from the station on the day and cost us 88 MXN each. Bus ride to Uxmal takes around an hour and a half.

Merida and Uxmal

Uxmal was once the greatest metropolitan and religious centre in the Puuc hills of Yucatan. It is truly a magnificent site and the ruins preserve the grandeur of what was. While some areas were closed for maintenance, we were still able to fully take in the stunning beauty of its architecture. Uxmal was much less crowded and felt more authentic than Chichen Itza (we’ll write a post about this too). In fact, there were times where we felt that it was just us and the Iguanas and no other visitors in sight.

It’s worth noting that bags can’t be taken in with you and must be left with security when entering. 

Merida and Uxmal

Visit the different parks in the city

Many parks in Merida are within walking distance so we found “park hopping” to be a nice way to see the city and the parks at the same time.

Parque de Santiago

Parque de Santiago is one of the smaller parks located right next to a church. Good place to try some local street food!

Parque de Santa Lucia

This was by far our favourite park. Nice restaurants and the atmosphere was generally welcoming and pleasant. We ate dinner here at a restaurant called Bryan’s in the Park.

Merida and Uxmal - Parque de Santa Lucia

Plaza Grande

This is the main and most popular park in Merida. It’s a bustling park with shaded paths and  benches. Light shows around Catedral de Merida take place in the evening which can be quite entertaining.

Merida and Uxmal - Plaza Grande


While tipping in Mexico in general can go as far as servers trying to scam you into tipping twice, we did feel that Merida was where establishments pushed it the most.

We’ll probably create another post at some point with more details but for now, it should be enough to be aware of this and be cautious.

Where to eat in Merida

Restaurants which offered vegetarian options, and we thoroughly enjoyed were:

  • Carboni Merida Ristorante: Nice Italian restaurant in the city centre.
  • Bryan’s in the Park: Great food with outside seating in Parque de Santa Lucia.

5 thoughts on “Exploring Merida and Uxmal in 1 day (from Holbox)”

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  3. Hello,
    What time did you take the bus from Merida to Uxmal and what’ more important – how did you manage to get back from Uxmal to Merida?
    Thanks for your reply!
    Plamen, Bulgaria

    1. Hi Plamen,

      We caught a 12 pm bus from TAME terminal (we used to check the bus schedules).

      We got back to Merida from Uxmal in more or less the same way – there is a bus stop (which was not too obvious) close to the exit of Uxmal. We were told the bus would arrive at 3 pm – we were 20 minutes early just to be safe, but the bus was late and actually arrived at 3:45 pm instead. There were about 10 other people waiting for the bus too – and it seems all were told the bus would arrive at different times (the bus also arrived full). We paid the bus driver in cash (make sure you have MXN currency and preferably small change).

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