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In the heart of the Mayan World, the Yucatan Peninsula offers an intriguing blend of past and present, and Merida offers an ideal base for exploring both.  Merida (known as The White City) is a colorful metropolis filled with Spanish-colonial architecture, narrow cobblestone streets, historic plazas and centuries-old mansions. This is a perfect destination for travelers seeking culture as well as gourmet restaurants and luxury accommodations. Best of all, Merida is one of the safest locations in all of Mexico.

A memorable visit to Merida should include a stay in an authentic hacienda. Many of the local mansions have been turned into luxury boutique hotels with anywhere from 7-30 rooms. Jet Set World Travel recommends the sumptuous Hacienda Xcanatun as an exemplary way to capture the essence of this lifestyle. The former mansion is located about 15 minutes from the city center and features 18 uniquely designed and decorated suites. The surrounding gardens, ponds and sitting areas make it a place that is hard to leave.

If you prefer to stay in town with an even more boutique experience, Casa Lecanda is a must. This fashionable hotel sits in the historic center of Merida. Spacious gardens and terraces offer visitors a unique experience at this sanctuary within the city.

The Yucatan offers visitors a culturally very rich experience, and it is so easy to combine with a beach destination. Contact Michelle Pragnell at to learn more and think “beach +” for your next visit to Mexico!




JETSET EXPERIENCES: The solo journey, an adventure to feed the soul.

Eleutheromania (n): an intense and irresistible desire for freedom.

It has been three weeks since I began my solo adventure in Costa Rica, and I feel as if I am just settling in. I don’t want it to end. I have garnered a sense of comfort in being on my own, enhanced by the beautiful landscapes, the uplifting vibe of a proud culture and inquisitive strangers who have become friends. Embracing the opportunity to immerse myself into the soul of a foreign country, vulnerable and wide-eyed, has reinforced the notion that life is all about the adventure. Traveling alone heightens that experience in a way no other method can.

As I wake up in a hammock on the porch – to the sound of the neighbor’s chickens crowing and coconuts falling to the ground – my primary thought is how fortunate I am to be here! The stress of navigating unmarked highways (actually dirt roads), stumbling through conversations in broken Spanish and keeping safety top of mind has dissipated. Instead, I acknowledge the hiccups along the way as small victories that together result in one of the most rewarding experiences of my life to date.

The sense of accomplishment and appreciation that can be gained by setting off on your own journey is something everyone should experience. There is an intense feeling of freedom in throwing out any kind of agenda and embracing the extended surf sessions, eating dinner at five and taking the scenic route because frankly you don’t have anywhere else to be. It will make you absorb the new destination as if you were drinking out of a fire hose; it will also bring gratitude for the support of your friends, family and your life at home. So pack your bags (don’t forget your Garmin!), bid adieu to familiar faces and embark on an adventure that will feed your soul: the solo journey.

To plan your next adventure, please contact Lindsey Woodcock at