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13. November 2018 · Comments Off on Shout Out: Valladolid · Categories: Beach Reads The Blog, Shout Outs · Tags:

This week’s SHOUT OUT goes to Valladolid. Whenever we want a break from the beach and a little change in culture, we sneak away to Valladolid in neighbouring Yucatan state. Now you may get to Puerto Morelos and just want to stay in town until it is time to get back on the plane. We understand and support that idea, but there are a lot of amazing things to do that are not that far away.

Not only is Valladolid a great jumping-off point to visit Chichen Itza or Ek Balam, but it is a worthwhile destination on its own, filled with art and history. We recommend at least a two-day stay just for the town itself. You can leave Puerto Morelos in the morning and be in Valladolid before noon. Using the Ruta de Cenotes shortcut to Leona Vicario, the trip has never been easier by car. Taking this route is quick, direct and avoids all those nasty charges on the overpriced toll road.

Local Tip: There can be a one hour time difference between Puerto Morelos and Yucatan State as they are on Central Time and we are on Eastern Standard Time (EST). They also recognize Daylight Saving Time, and we do not. 

Valladolid itself is a gem. It’s a colonial city with beautiful architecture and an incredible and important history. The Caste War of the Yucatan began here in 1847, and early seeds of the 1910 Mexican Revolution sprouted here. Today it is a busy, but a very accessible town. Most of the attractions are an easy walk from the town square, including the impressive San Bernadino Convent, the fun San Roque Museum, the stoic Cathedral of Valladolid and the Government Palace, which features large dramatic murals depicting the history of the city.

One of the greatest attractions in Valladolid is Casa de los Venados which features the most impressive collection of Mexican folk art we have ever seen, all in a uniquely restored, privately-owned colonial mansion. We have travelled all over Mexico and know that each region has its own distinct art. Often two towns next door to each other will have completely different art, so a chance to see such a fine selection in one place is rare. Admission is by donation (of at least 60 pesos) making it a bargain too. Seeing the impressive casa is worth the price of admission alone. The house is just off the square. Proceeds from your admission and special events held throughout the year go to support a variety of charities in Valladolid.

Local Tip: Casa de los Venados offers tours every day at 10:00 am

PRIME DATES STILL AVAILABLE

While in town, visit chef Hugo at the restaurant Conato (also known as Conato 1910 or Casa Conato Cultural). It is near the square on Calle 40 at number 226. The building was once a meeting spot for revolutionaries in the early 20th century. Now it is an excellent restaurant with a wide and varied menu. While there, be sure to take note of the outstanding local art that decorates the space, and don’t miss the music in the back garden. Highly recommended.

Local Tip: At Conato, sit upstairs for a view of the church at night.

If shopping is your thing, Valladolid is home to some very chic designers who have opened a few high-end shops and businesses like Coqui Coqui Spa & Perfumes that make their own scents and candles. They also own a spa and home-shop, plus La Barberia, a hip place to get a hot towel shave. Featured in Vogue, Ariane Dutzi’s handbags are sewn by local Mayan woman using recycled materials. More reachable on the financial scale are local craftsmen who make leather sandals and the Mayan woman of Valladolid sell their handmade wares at Centro Artesanal ZacÍ located on the main town square.

These are just a few things to get you started in Valladolid. The town has so much more to offer. Our favourite thing to do there is just wandering the streets, eventually stopping for an afternoon drink watching life go by around the main town square. If you really want a change of pace, we recommend Valladolid for a quick getaway. With tons of history, art, culture, and great food, Valladolid is not to be missed.

This post is part of our ongoing feature where we will send a SHOUT OUT to one of our local businesses, people or hints that could improve your time In Puerto Morelos. If you would like to be a part of this feature click here to find out how you can join in on the fun!

06. November 2018 · Comments Off on Shout Out: Al Chimichurri · Categories: Beach Reads The Blog, Shout Outs · Tags:

This week’s SHOUT OUT goes to a perennial PM favourite, Al Chimichurri. When they opened more than 10 years ago we didn’t even know what an empanada was, let alone what a chimichurri was (some kind of animal?)  Now many years and countless empanadas later, we know and love our Uruguayan cuisine and we are hooked on their home-made chimichurri…though we still have trouble spelling it.

Eduardo was the man behind the grill in those early days. I remember chatting with him while he pounded out the empanada dough by hand every day, before grilling beautiful steaks all night in his sweltering, tiny restaurant kitchen. I used to joke that his kitchen was not much bigger than a phone booth, and at any time, at least a third of it was on fire.

Local Tip: Order the Lomo en Salsa Madera. It’s the specialty of the house and comes with a flavourful gravy that takes days to make.

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Later he added a handcrafted, wood-burning oven that was based on an ancient design from Uruguay. This is where they bake wonderful fresh bread and pizzas.

The real secret of Al Chimichurri is that it is a family operation. Luckily Eduardo has a very big family! On any given night you can see the siblings working side by side.

Local Tip: The same family also owns La Rambla right across the street. It’s new!

Al Chimichurri has a wide menu featuring steaks, chicken, pizza, salad (with or without carne) and those wonderful empanadas. With a full bar, they also have a good selection of wine. We like the Norton Malbec from Argentina.

And, if you have room, they have delicious desserts.

In the last few years, they have expanded their seating with the addition of a beautiful back garden. During high season reservations are highly recommended. Find their contact information on our restaurant page They are open evenings except for Monday from 5:00 pm to 11:00 pm.

Al Chimichurri…hard to spell, fun to say, delicious to taste.

This post is part of a new feature where we will send a SHOUT OUT to one of our local businesses, people or hints that could improve your time In Puerto Morelos. If you would like to be a part of this feature click here to find out how you can join in on the fun!

Photos courtesy Al Chimichurri

02. November 2018 · Comments Off on Town Update: New Supermarket for PM Nov 2, 2018 · Categories: Beach Reads The Blog, Photo Post · Tags: , ,

A big Hola from Puerto Morelos!

Hope you are doing well wherever you are, and that you are actively planning a trip to Puerto Morelos.

If you need accommodations, we still have some space at Casa de los Viajeros. Please see our website for more details & rates. 

There is lots of news from your town. For this post, we’re going to focus on the new Chedraui grocery store that should be open by the end of the year.

The store is being built just south of the square between the restaurants Al Chimichurri and Spaghettino. There was a very large vacant lot there that was used for parking in past years. The Chedraui will take the entire lot, so it will be accessible on foot from either Rojo Gomez or Rafael Melgar. By car, you will reach it from Rojo Gomez. (See the map below for more clarification)

This will be the main entrance from Rojo Gomez. Al Chimichurri is on the left side of the photo. The entrance is where you see the scaffolding. The parking area is on the right side of the photo. (Click any photo too see it full screen)

This is a side view from Rojo Gomez and the small parking area. We are told it will handle just 36 cars.

This is another view of the parking lot. To the right is the truck entrance. They have one dock to supply the store. It will be tricky to back a truck into, glad it is not my job.

This is a view of the store from the other side. Crews are building palapa roofs for what we assume are going to be small locales, spaces for small businesses.

Closer view of the locales

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A big crew is working on the palapa. It looks like this will be another entrance on the northeast side of the store, right across from Las Palmeras restaurant.

Here’s a very rough drawing of where the new Chedraui will sit. That is the town square at the top of the photo. You can also see Pelicanos and their dock to the right.

We have been told that this will be a Chedraui “Select” store, so a little more fancy than the existing Chedraui on the highway. There are Chedraui Select stores already in Cancun, in the Hotel Zone and in Plaza Las Americas. They tend to have more import goods and also have cafes and restaurants inside. I have not been able to confirm any of this.

The store is going up very quickly, with a very big crew of workers, working long hours. They hope to be open by the end of November. That might be a bit optimistic, but with a big crew, a lot can be accomplished quickly.

We’ll have more updates from Puerto Morelos coming soon!

Check out our rental properties! We have one and two bedroom suites available, close to the beach and centro. www.CasaDeLosViajeros.com

 

 

 

 

01. November 2018 · Comments Off on Cash Exchange Rates in Puerto Morelos for November 1, 2018 · Categories: Do not use

Here are the cash exchange rates for November 1, 2018 at CI Banco in Puerto Morelos. I post these rates on occasion so that you can compare these rates with the rate your bank or the ATM may offer. To see where the rates have been in the last couple of years, search “exchange rates” on our page at InPuertoMorelos.com 

Cash Exchange Rates Buy Sell
US Dollar $ 19.00 20.35
Canadian Dollar $ 14.35 15.65
Euro € 22.00 23.40
Pound Sterling £ 25.15 26.80