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Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

Brooklyn, New York
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Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

We have 7-8 nights in mid-May and ideally would like to see Merida & Chichén Itzá but ultimately our goal is Tulum for some relaxation. I wish there was a flight into Merida but seems like we will have to go in and out of Cancun. If we were to do all 3 how would you break up the days, considering day 1 will probably be all travel?

Thanks so much!

Merida, Yucatan
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1. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

Will you have a car or be dependent on public transport? The ADO bus service is very good from Cancun to Merida and you could get a bus direct from the airport to Merida and be here in a little over 3 hours.

The division of your time will depend on your personal preference. Perhaps 3 nights here, an overnight in Valladolid, or Pisté, to allow you to get into Chichen at 8 am and then on to Tulum for the remaining time. That appears to be fairly well balanced.

Vancouver
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2. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

We've done a similar trip with a rental car. If you get into Cancun at a decent time, get on the road immediately, and get to Vallodolid. Overnight there and hit Chichen Itza early the next day. Then either stay another day in Vallodolid and do more exploring in the area (cenotes, Ek Balam, etc), or move on to Merida for 3 nights or so then back to the coast via the Vallodolid-Coba road to Tulum.

Cape Cod
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3. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

What bcBEZ said.

It depends upon when you arrive. If you land after 4 p.m., plan on renting a hotel room close to the airport or in the Cancun hotel zone, because you probably shouldn't drive at night, at least not when you first arrive.

If you arrive before 4 p.m., then I'd rent a car and drive to Chichen Itza via the Cuota (toll road), with plans to overnight there. From there go on to Merida. After enjoying Merida, take a full day to drive to Tulum. I recommend stopping at Valladolid for quick looksee and meal, possibly making a trip to Ek Balam, and then driving the free road from Valladolid to Tulum. You'll pass Coba, but you might want to save that for another day since you will be close in Tulum.

Have a great trip!

Brooklyn, New York
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4. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

Thanks to you all for your responses!

We anticipate arriving around noon (flying a quick direct flight from NYC), so we could either a) rent a car or b) take the 1:30p ADO bus to Merida. I really hadn't thought to do Chichén Itzá first! I really thought about that as a stop making my way back to Tulum. Now you've given me something to think about.

So now we're thinking:

1 night Chichén Itzá

2 (or 3) nights Merida

5 (or 4) nights Tulum

New York City, New...
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5. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

Two years ago I thought I was smart flying to Merida from NYC via Mexico City. Never again - I'm back to the non-stop to Cancun and ADO to Merida. I love Mexico City, but transiting through it wasn't fun in either direction.

If you opt for the bus to Valladolid as a base for Chichen Itza - keep in mind the express buses are few and far between - and the local bus is interesting but a long trip. Be sure to use the bathroom and stock up on snacks before you get on the bus (not to much water!). When I arrived in December I had a 2.5 hour wait for the next express bus - it was a long long trip on the local. But, I hadn't been on the old road to Chichen Itza since 1992, so it was cool to see the transition (but not all the flooding).

suitcaseready.com

Edited: 31 March 2014, 15:21
Brooklyn, New York
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6. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

Thank you! Now that I think about it - it really makes sense to do Chichén Itzá first. I also think I'm going to try and stretch to 9 nights so it's not rushed. I also think also that we're going to rent a car at least until Tulum. This is what I'm thinking. Any comments welcome:

- Arrive Friday at noon into Cancun. Rent a car and drive 2.5 hours to Chichén Itzá . Spend the night and to do early morning tour.

- After tour drive to Merida. Spend 2 full days in Merida (Saturday & Sunday) and 3 nights - Sat, Sun & Mon.

- On Monday, spend the day driving to Tulum

- Spend 4 full days and 5 nights in Tulum - (Mon - Fri)

- Depart Saturday afternoon from Cancun back to NYC.

San Jose, California
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7. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

That looks like a really great itinerary.

For the Chichen Itza portion, you could stay in the town of Valladolid or at one of the hotels next to the site itself. We stayed at the Mayaland at the site - it was really neat to be out there and have views of the site from our hotel room balcony. And we were right there first thing in the morning to visit the site. The hotel itself is very good - the only issue I had was that the food really left a lot to be desired. Also, it is a big hotel and tours stay there, so it can be busy. Not a big deal, but something to consider. Staying in Valladolid, you would have more choices for food and entertainment, and it is just a neat town anyway. However, you'd have to get up a bit earlier to get out to the site when it opens.

Vancouver
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8. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

I'd vote for staying overnight in Vallodolid. You're landing in Cancun relatively early, and it's a much nicer place to spend the evening than a Chichen Itza hotel or Piste. The town plaza is quite nice, and there are interesting buildings and sites I also can't recommend Ek Balam enough- it's small, peaceful, parts are only partially excavated which gives you a neat view of how these cities sat in the jungle, and you can climb and explore everything. It will be a nice contrast to Chichen Itza.

We also rented a car in Cancun, did the inland portion, then dropped off the car in Tulum before the laying around the beach part. Worked very well.

Cape Cod
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9. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

For this post, NOT what bcBEZ said ...

There is no place better to stay than the Hacienda Chichen, in my opinion. Far preferable to any hotel in Valladolid. And the food is great. From there it is short walk (a few hundred feet) past the Mayaland to the Chichen Itza archaeological zone entrance.

10. Re: Merida --->Chichén Itzá ---> Tulum - OK to do in a week?

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