Valladolid (Saki’ in Maya) is a beautiful small town in Yucatan. Until the beginning of the 20th century, Valladolid was the third largest and most important city of the Yucatán Peninsula, (after Mérida and Campeche). From colonial era churches and architecture to natural wonders like cenotes, Valladolid was known under its nickname The Sultana of the East. I love coming and visiting my friends Ariane Dutzi, Francesca and Nicolas from Coqui Coqui. Wandering around the zocalo, while enjoying a coconut ice cream. Watching the mayan women in their traditional huipils near the Mercado de Artesanias, a block from the city’s beautiful Parque Principal and the cathedral of San Servacio. Other colonial buildings located in downtown Valladolid are the Rectory, the House of Culture, the House of Deer (which houses the Mexican Popular Art Museum), the house of Delio Moreno Canton and the craft center, where you can buy basketry, leatherwork, hammocks and other accessories. My favorite spot for lunch is El Meson del Marques, they have the best sopa de lima ( Yucatan Lime Soup ) and tacos de Cochinita pibil. A traditional Mexican slow-roasted pork dish from the Yucatán Península of Mayan origin. The preparation of traditional cochinita pibil involves marinating the meat in strongly acidic citrus juice, coloring it with annatto seed, and roasting the meat while it is wrapped in banana leaf. After lunch I walk over to Calle de los frailes, where I stop in the cocoa museum shop. You will be explained the process of Mayan chocolate, they will show you the cocoa fruit, its seeds, how they are peeled and sun dried, then grounded in a mill forming a paste, honey is added and little balls are formed. These delicious chocolates are made with chile, vanilla, orange peel, cinnamon, anise, tequila and Xtabentun, liquor typical of Yucatan. They also make beauty products from the cacao bean, that are very nurturing and restorative. Finally I walk to the Convent of San Bernardino de Siena, which I love. Located a couple of blocks from the heart of the city is the Cenote Zaci, where you can swim, you can also drive to the magical Cenote Dzitnup ( X’Keken in Mayan) located 10 min outside the city. Valladolid is an enchanting and magical town, offering its rich culture and heritage, a true gem of the region. I highly recommend visiting this picturesque place.
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