#29 Merida, Mexico
Population: Just over 970,000
Average Annual Temp: 88°F
Merida, Mexico has long been the cultural hub of the Yucatan Peninsula. Nicknamed “The White City”, it offers a unique blend of colonial ambiance interspersed with modern high-end hotels, restaurants and malls. The main central market and many small shops surround the central plaza area. The Pasejo Montejo avenue, constructed by the city’s wealthy during the latter part of the 19th century to mimic the Champs-Élysées in Paris, is decorated with sculptures. Colonial residences are in abundance, many waiting to be restored by expats looking to own a bit of history.
Merida is one of the easiest destinations to reach in Mexico. The international airport has regularly scheduled flights from Houston, Miami, Belize City, and Mexico City. An even more economical option is to fly into nearby Cancun (which has many regular international flights from the US and Europe) and then take a bus or shuttle to Merida. Once there, there are many museums, art galleries, and day trips to nearby Mayan ruins, beaches and more that make the area a prime tourist attraction.
Merida has a good investment potential as well. With its tropical weather, an active and growing expat community, and a number of available homes that could be a renovator’s dream, money spent here can translate into long term growth. Merida’s outlook continues to be bright-both in terms of its tourist industry and for expats desiring the experience of Yucatan culture for themselves.