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This home is in Merida’s Colonia Centro, and within the lovely barrio of San Sebastian. The house is wonderfully located a block and a half from both the San Sebastian Park and the La Ermita Park so it is easy to catch a concert or watch a ballgame. In the morning getting fresh juice, produce, eggs, or a delicious torta is an easy one block walk from the house to the San Sebastian market. Walking a little further will put you in Merida’s bustling downtown area and the Plaza Grande.
The Barrios of both San Sebastian, and La Ermita are some of the oldest, and most traditional in Merida.
La Ermita de Santa Isabel –
The church La Ermita Santa Isabel, is just a block and a half away. La Ermita is dedicated to Nuestra Señora del Buen Viaje (our lady of the good journey). It is on the Camino Real, which joined Merida to Campeche after the conquest of Yucatan in the sixteenth century. The beautiful old church is surrounded by a beautiful botanical garden. The church itself is quite simple, with a square façade and large cornice above. Above the cornice is a pyramid-shaped belfry with three bell openings, on the cornice is a legend engraved in 1748!
Once you have taken the time to appreciate the church, go around to the left of the building, where you will find a door; hopefully it will be open, if not try knocking. If you get in you will find a small, interesting garden full of medicinal and ornamental plants and trees, all native Yucatecan.
The bandstand at La Ermita host many musical events during the year. And Ermita is one of the few places that still hosts an annual Hanal Pixan celebration.
San Sebastian –
The church in San Sebastian is fronted by a shady park with fountain. There are also a sports area with a large fenced field for baseball and soccer, as well as a much used basketball court, and a brand new ‘exercise’ court. There are also Zumba classes 3 afternoons a week.
San Sebastian has a small mercado with fruit and vegetable stalls, butchers, and cocinas economicas. Both sides of Calle 70 at 77 are flanked by evening cocinas where you can dine on traditional on Yucatecan food under the stars. These particular restaurants are very popular with local Meridanos from other parts of the city and are quite busy on weekend nights.
There are public and private schools around the park, an Extra convenience store, and a popular antique store, as well as small hardware stores, computer repair, framers, etc. There are several small gyms, and a variety of other services available within short walking distance.
There is a large Chedraui SuperMarket 6 blocks away, and you can get a tricitaxi home for about 20pesos.
San Sebastian is known for its fairs, and frequently during the year, booths with penny arcades and kiddie carnival rides are set up around the park. The first two weeks of August are especially busy here, when it seems like half of Merida comes down to enjoy San Sebastian’s famous fería, The Asuncion, complete with voladores (homemade bottle rockets), papier maché bulls and music.
It is a very fun and active neighborhood in which to live.
BiciRuta, every Sunday – The Bici-ruta runs from La Ermita de Santa Isabel north to the glorieta on Prolongación Montejo at Circuito Colonias. The Bici-ruta is open to families, cyclists, tourists, young people, old people, dog walkers, everybody!
Another fun aspect of the Bici-ruta is all the cultural, sport, recreational and health events at various points along the way.
Also close by are;
The Skhole Theatre, drop in for breakfast, a cappuccino, or in the evenings for a live performance.
About 6 blocks to El Cardenal Cantina, a really fun new refurbished Cantina/Dive Bar. Cold beer, and a fabulous array of musical entertainments.
Want to take art classes – just a short walk away – Painting classes with Greenwood
Maya Language School – There are three official Maya Language schools in Merida, and this one is just around the corner from us –
Academia Municipal de la Lengua Maya “Itzamná”
Dirección:Calle 64-A No. 536 entre 77 y 79, Ermita.
Tel. (999) 924-08-41.
Churches – We are between 2 catholic churches, there is a Mormon Temple close by, as well as a Seventh Day Adventist, there are probably more, I am just not aware. The main Cathedral is about 10 blocks.
Here’s a great little map link