Merida usually known as the white city is a colonial city built 480 years ago. It is very quiet and safe, and because of its geography, history and traditions has a very good quality of life. As one of the main cities of Mexico and the largest city in the South, you will find virtually any type of service from private schools and universities of high academic standards, hospitals with almost all medical specialties and good quality, nice shopping malls, all kinds of restaurants, bars, clubs, cinemas, casinos, sports facilities and a host of leisure and entertainment options located nearby such as archaeological sites, beautiful beaches, cenotes, haciendas, among others. Because of its geographic location, Merida is considered a paradise, just 15 minutes from the beach and 3 hours from Cancun and Playa del Carmen and a 1½ hour flight to Mexico City, Miami and Houston. Merida is the cultural capital of southeastern Mexico, has a magnificent symphony (Yucatan Symphony Orchestra), opera, dance, art galleries, and street music of all kinds. On Sunday, Downtown is closed to traffic and becomes purely a pedestrian street,where you can find food, crafts, music and dance. On Sunday morning the Paseo Motejo, becomes pedestrian and bicycle path where families and tourists alike enjoy. Local people are very used to enjoying the beach all year, and their outdoor activities. You can visit Mayan ruins is Dzibilchaltun. On the way to Progreso you can enjoy swimming in the Cenote. A little further away but still close, Chichen Itza and Uxmal either is a pleasant day trip. Explore the old haciendas, travel along the route of the convents of Mayan Missions, the area abounds in history. In coastal areas and mangroves also find magnificent birds vigilant, as we have also, forests, semi-arid land, lagoons and beaches; the famous breeding colony of flamingos are a short drive to see them in Celestun or near Progreso.