destination love

This is the perfect place to have a destination wedding

The Yucatan peninsula from above
Photo via WorldAtlas

Often overlooked in favor of its glitzy sister Quintana Roo, the Yucatan has begun to attract diverse queer travelers desiring a more authentic Mexican experience. You won’t find crowded beaches or overpriced resorts on the Emerald Coast.

Quaint fishing villages and romantic luxury beach clubs dot the shore under swinging palms. A collection of restored haciendas (Mexican colonial mansions) offers a wide variety of boutique hotel experiences amongst the vibrantly colored historical buildings of Mérida or hidden in the Yucatan’s mystic jungles.

The region is known for its hospitality, rich mixture of Mexican and Mayan cuisines, and over 10,000 freshwater cenotes waiting to be explored. Historic Mayan ruins rise out of the mist, and charming villages welcome tourists with open arms.

Although same-sex marriage has been legal on the federal level since 2010, the Yucatán formally legalized marriage equality state-wide in 2022. This step in solidifying its acceptance has made Yucatán one of the most sought-after destinations for wedding and honeymoon locations.

Whether you want to elope in this sun-kissed peninsula with family and friends or enjoy a romantic honeymoon in Merida’s quaint colonial streets, these are our recommendations for exploring the Yucatán.

Where to tie the knot

Ancient Mayan archway leading to a lush green lawn

Hacienda Sac Chich

Hacienda Sac Chich

Tropical oasis dream Calle 16 · Acanceh, Yuc. 97380
(999) 278-1178
Website

Ever imagined your wedding in a historic villa amongst lush tropical gardens, brightly colored turn-of-century buildings, and a collection of ornate reflecting pools? Hacienda Sac Chich is a small boutique hotel that hosts weddings and “micro weddings” of up to 150 people. It also has a collection of local queer-friendly wedding planners to help organize floral and catering arrangements to make your special day seamless.  Located only thirty minutes from downtown Mérida, this tropical oasis is in close proximity to dozens of freshwater cenotes and ancient Mayan ruins. 

Flock of flamingo in the middle of the water surrounded by trees
Photo via Tourism Mexico

Celestún

Reserva de la Biosfera Ría Celestún

Flamingos! WMR3+WM · San Isidro Miramar, Yuc. 97369

Website

Looking for a white sand beach to get hitched? Celestún is a sleepy fishing village just a short day trip from Mérida. The beaches are calm, and the fresh ceviche served under thatched palapas is abundant. You won’t find all-inclusive resorts or fine dining restaurants, but you will find La Reserva de la Biosfera Ría Celestún, a hidden natural gem. Rent kayaks or take a boat tour through the crystal clear mangrove waters in search of large flocks of pink flamingos. What else could you ask for in a gay wedding?

Upscale poolside lounge area at Chable Yuca
Photo via Chable Yuca

Chablé Yuca

Secluded tropical sanctuary Tablaje 642 · Chocholá, Yuc. 97816
(554) 161-4262
Website

The town of Celestún doesn’t have luxury accommodations right on the beach, but a short drive away, the ultra-modern Chablé Yucatán is a great place to pamper yourself. Indulge in the wellness center, beekeeping workshops, and ancient Mayan rituals such as the Tamazcal ceremony. The stunning pool and the breathtakingly gorgeous rooms with modern amenities will not disappoint.

Cenotes

Underground Cenote with blue water and light shining through the cavern roof
Photo via Chichen Itza

Sacred Cenote

Sacred and remote site Yuc. 97751

Website

Over 60 million years ago, a meteorite landed in the Yucatan peninsula, helping to create over 10,00 freshwater limestone pools and caverns throughout the area. The cenotes are sacred to the Mayan people, a freshwater source of many flora and fauna, and make a stunning backdrop to an outdoor wedding ceremony.

Jungle outdoor wedding venue. Draped in white linen
Photo via Yucatan Love

Queer-friendly wedding planners Yucatan Love work as destination wedding planners, have access to myriad locations and vendors and include a detailed resource page for potential newlyweds. They are experts in Cenote ceremonies and have access to historic haciendas and beach locations throughout the Yucatán.

Where to get pampered in Merida:

Whether celebrating a recent ceremony or preparing for the big day, it’s important to rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul.

Tranquil tropical garden and spa center
Photo via La Hacienda Xcanatun

La Hacienda Xcanatun

Tropical paradise Calle 20 S/N x 19 y 19A Comisaría Xcanatún · Mérida, Yuc. 97302
(999) 930-2140
Website

La Hacienda Xcanatun

Housed in an 18th-century hacienda just 15 minutes outside of downtown Merida, this hotel and spa strive to be an urban sanctuary of wellness. Choose from a variety of relaxing massages such as a soothing Javanese tension reliever or a back-focused treatment. Mixed with Mayan healing rituals, body polishes and conditioners made from fresh local ingredients will keep your skin glowing.

Miorrelajante Centro de Relajación Muscular, Quiropráctica y Fisioterapia

Rejuvinating and healing 292 C. 38 · Mérida, Yuc. 97203
(999) 901-7640
Website

Miorrelajante

If you’re looking for a more alternative restorative approach, make sure to check out Miorrelajante. There, you can book treatments ranging from suction cup massages to Thai meditation massages, electrolysis therapy, and even chiropractic adjustments. Make sure to check out their website for special discounted couples treatment packages.

Casa Kiool

Classic spa offerings 512 C. 53 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 216-0874
Website

Casa Kiool

Skilled holistic estheticians focusing on men’s and women’s facials, pedicures, manicures, and massages will make you feel gorgeous. Check out the store for aromatherapy and holistic products. 

Coqui Coqui Mérida

Decadent boutique hotel with perfumery Calle 55 516 entre Calle 62 y Calle 64, Centro · Mérida, Yuc. 97121
(999) 923-0216
Website

Coqui Coqui Mérida

When a luxury Mexican fragrance brand creates a hotel line, the spa experience is destined to exude pure decadence. French Belle Époque inspired interiors, checkered tiled marble flooring, and a spa full of handcrafted charms make this one of Merida’s most indulgent experiences. Expect to find a full list of massages, reflexology treatments, facials, and botanical bathing rituals inside a private courtyard. Coqui Coqui is a romantic oasis set apart from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Kate Miasik Hair Salon – Hair Stylist

Upscale color and cut Calle 27 #75 x12 y 14, Col. México · Mérida, Yuc. 97125
(999) 926-2777
Website

Kate Miasik Hair Salon

Stylish and modern hair salon with an English-speaking staff ready to pamper you. The salon offers manicures, pedicures, coloring services, nourishing hair treatments, and makeup/hair styling for any event.

Explore the Yucatan’s cosmopolitan city of Mérida

A colorful stretch of road. European/Caribbean style buildings all painted bright colors

Shop and Stay

Known as the safest city in Mexico, Mérida has an array of accommodations ranging from the eco-design hotel Wayam Mundo Imperial to the ultra-luxurious Rosas and Xocolate. Most accommodations and attractions are located within the city’s center.

Wayam Mundo Imperial

Sleek eco design hotel 508 Av. Colón · Mérida, Yuc. 97070
(800) 969-2926
Website

Rosas & Xocolate Boutique Hotel + SPA

Chic French inspired boutique hotel 480 P.º de Montejo · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 924-2992
Website

To immerse yourself in the city, stroll down Mérida’s main artery, Paseo Montej. You’ll find a variety of unique Mexican boutiques, such as the Casa T´HŌ Concept House, Amerindio Hombre, and Folks.

Casa T´HŌ Concept House

Unique and elevated shopping experience 498 P.º de Montejo · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 923-2350
Website

Amerindio Hombre

Locally made men’s boutique Calle 62 #469 Planta Baja · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 923-0945
Website

Folks

Hip unisex boutique C. 55, Parque Santa Lucia, Centro · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 297-6021
Website

Get your coffee on

A giant coffee roaster spins beans

Capitalizing on its proximity to quality Mexican coffee bean farms, Manifesto Coffee Roaster and Cafe showcase the region’s artisinal brews through various extraction methods. Pan & Køf.feé’s rustic bakery will tempt you to enjoy a perfectly flaky croissant in their lush garden courtyard or you can beat the heat by trying one of Pola Gelato shop’s exotic flavors which are made fresh daily.

Manifesto: Casa Tostadora Calabrese

Independent coffee roaster and breakfast cafe Calle 59 #538 por 66 y 68 · Mérida, Yuc. 97125

Website

Pan & Køf.feé

Artisanal patisserie Calle 43 x 58 y 60 #485, Santa Ana · Mérida, Yuc. 97000

Website

Pola Gelato Shop

Vintage gelato parlour 467D Calle 55 x 62 y 64 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 923-1107
Website

History

Dive into the city’s decadent colonial past by visiting the restored turn-of-century mansion Quinta Montes Molina or visit the Mayan World Museum to understand more of the current and ancient Mayan culture. 

Quinta Montes Molina

Opulant mansion and scenic gardens 469 P.º de Montejo · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 925-5999
Website

Mayan World Museum of Mérida

Mayan museum and cultural center 299 E C. 60 · Mérida, Yuc. 97110
(999) 341-0435
Website

Delicious dining and dancing

Whether you enjoy a late brunch in Te extraño’s flourishing garden or a boozy dinner at one of Mérida’s cantinas, such as La Negrita, the culinary options are endless. Restaurante Picheta offers fine dining in a casual atmosphere with sweeping views of Mérida’s main plaza, while Salon Gallo’s Mexican Lebanese Fusion restaurant and gallery lie within an old oat mill. 

Te extraño, extraño.

Sophisticated secret garden Calle 56 #426 x 47 y 49 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 921-1304
Website

La Negrita Cantina

Buzzy historic cantina 415 C. 49 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 267-9582
Website

Restaurante Picheta

Fine dining with stunning views 501 C. 61 · Ejido del Centro, Yuc. 97000
(999) 506-0339
Website

Salon Gallos

Lebanese Mexican Fusion with gallery & cinema 459-B C. 63 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 189-6564
Website
Crowded dance floor with neon lights everywhere

Queer nightlife in Mérida ranges from queer-friendly spaces such as the hip Casa Chica cantina to queer women-owned Cada Dia, which offers queer-oakie, alternative drag, and dance parties. Casa Pompidou hosts all-night electronic music DJs under entrancing visuals, while a night at DIX seduces you with pop music, sinister drag, and steamy male strippers.

Casa Chica | Bar

Palacial cantina 498 B P.º de Montejo · Mérida, Yuc. 97000

Website

Cadadía Bar-Cafe

Queer owned cantina 435 C. 53 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 931-0385
Website

Casa Pompidou

Electronic music hub CALLE 58 469A por 53 y 55, 97000 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 129-9108
Website

DIX Bar

Devilishly deligtful drag 495 C. 53 · Mérida, Yuc. 97000
(999) 649-0031
Website
A collection of ancient Mayan ruins on a sunny day
The Mayan Ruins Of Tulum Overlooking The Ocean


Ancient Mayan Ruins, Cenotes, and Pueblos Magicos:

With so many incredible experiences, choosing an excursion outside of Mérida can be overwhelming. However, you will create lifelong memories if you unwind on the beach, explore ancient Mayan ruins, swim in unreal limestone cenotes, or visit a charming magical town. Booking a local tour guide is a great way to get a genuine and unique perspective. Many accommodations use vetted guides, but if you’re looking to support a local queer company, don’t hesitate to reach out to Merida Gay Tours.  If you are the more independent type, we suggest renting a car and exploring all that the Yucatan has to offer. 

Cenotes Hacienda Muchucye:

Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyché

Breathtaking natural wonder Abalá · Mucuyché, Yuc. 97825
(999) 547-6087
Website

A historic hacienda and cenotes are dripping with lush flora. On a guided tour of the historic site, you’ll swim through crystal clear channels, explore water-logged caverns, and learn about the fascinating history of the once-prosperous ranch.


Dzibilchaltun Mayan Ruins & Cenote Xlacah

Cenote Xlacah

Natural swimming pool Zona Arqueológica de Dzibilchaltún Dzibilchaltún · Mérida, Yuc. 97305

Website

Explore the archaeological Mayan ruins and cool off in the open-air freshwater cenote once utilized as the ancient community’s well of life.

Chichen Itza

Chichén Itzá

Incredible Mayan history Mérida, Yuc. 97170

Website

It is one of the most well-known and preserved Mayan ruins in the Americas. To avoid large crowds, arrive early and book tickets beforehand.

Izamal

Izamal

The yellow city Izamal, Yuc. 97540

Website

It is known as the yellow city due to the canary-colored Convento de San Antonio and many colonial buildings. It is the only city with six Mayan ruins within its walls and various gastronomic delicacies.

Ecos de Uxmal

Uxmal Archaeological Zone

Immerse yourself in history Uxmal, Yuc. 97884
(999) 944-0033
Website

Take an immersive nocturnal walk through the ancient Mayan ruins of Uxmal. Gaze upon visuals projected onto the ruins and observe the sounds of the mystic jungle in the distance.

Playa Chuburná:

Playa Chuburna Puerto

Secluded white sand C. 2d Chuburna Puerto · Chuburná, Yuc. 97336

Website

Located 20-30 minutes from the touristy Progresso, this beach town offers pristine beaches, luxury beach clubs, affordable accommodations, and a chance to soak up the sun while avoiding the crowds.

Sisal:

Sisal

Tropical seaport town Sisal, Yuc. 97356

Website

Once the principal port during the colonial henequen boom, now tourists flock for the sleepy fishing village vibes, white sand beaches, and flamingo spottings.


San Benito, San Bruno & Uaymitun:

Gorgeous tropical beach with palm trees and grass huts

Driving east from the port of Progresso you find a stretch of small beach communities with private homes for rent right on the beach. For a secluded beach experience with limited amenities within walking distance, this may be your pick.

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