Located in the center of the Yucatan Peninsula, Valladolid is a mere two hours away from Cancun but feels like a world apart. This small colonial city oozes charm and sleepiness with its pastel buildings and narrow cobblestone streets.
Valladolid is one of Mexico’s “Pueblos Magicos” (magical towns), which is a distinction given to towns in Mexico based on their natural beauty, cultural riches or historical relevance to the country. There are 3,000 cenotes within the area and at least ten are close enough to go by bicycle, many which are open for swimming.
Formed in the 1540s on top of the former Mayan town of Zaci, the Mayan culture remains very prominent in Valladolid. Valladolid feels authentic, with an interesting mix of both Mayan and Spanish culture.
We decided to use Valladolid as our base for four days during a road trip across Yucatan and Quintana Roo with travel blogger Dani from Globetrotter Girls.
Most people use Valladolid as a stop over on their way to the Mayan ruins like Chichen Itza and Ek Balam as well as many cenotes, and the tour buses only spend a couple of hours in the city before heading back to Cancun. As such, we did not come across many other tourists while we were there.
We also did not see other digital nomads working in Valladolid and generally found fast internet speed to be lacking in Valladolid. However, despite the lack of any digital nomad scene and fast internet, we think this town is still well worth a longer stay in order to fully experience what it has to offer.
The most popular times to visit Valladolid are between the months of December and March, however, the cheapest and best time to visit Valladolid would be the shoulder season months of May and November.
Work-Friendly Restaurants & Cafes
We visited this healthy restaurant four days in a row and loved their vegetarian-friendly menu and atmosphere. There were plenty of vegetarian options, including several Mexican classics such as enchiladas, sopes, and chilaquiles.
The wifi here worked well, although it did drop off from time to time. The chairs were pretty comfortable and there were also plugs available. There is also an outdoor garden at the back of the restaurant, although we did not test the wifi signal strength there.
We visited Coffee Bike Station one evening as the wifi in our hotel was down and we needed to get some work done. We chanced upon Coffee Bike Station and decided to check out this bike-inspired cafe. A short walk from Parque Francisco Canton, Coffee Bike Station serves a great cup of coffee as well as the interesting Chai Chatta (Chai + Horchata!).
Run by a friendly and hip Mexican lady, Coffee Bike Station has good internet speed and several plugs available. Although the chairs weren’t the most comfortable, we ended up spending a couple of hours working there.
Where We Stayed
We stayed at Gayser Apartment and found the room for 400 pesos (21 USD) a night using Agoda. The room came with our own private bathroom and air conditioner, but the wifi was too slow and kept dropping which made it almost impossible for us to do any work.
Top Things To See And Do In And Around Valladolid
Parque Fransisco Canton Rosado
This is the main square in the city and it is surrounded by well-maintained colonial buildings. Great place to walk around while grabbing a bite from one of the street food vendors.
The largest of the archaeological cities of the pre-Columbian Maya civilization in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico, Chichen Itza is one of Mexico’s most visited tourist destinations. Chichen Itza is also a World Heritage Site and considered one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.
Ek Balam is an archaeological site of the late classic Maya culture and it is much less visited than the much larger Chichen Itza. There are no public buses to get there, so you will either need to rent a car, take a taxi or a collectivo van. Admission is 197 MXN and an additional 50 MXN to visit the Ek Balam cenote.
Rio Lagartos and Los Coloradas
Las Coloradas is a tiny Mexican fishing village famous for their brightly colored pink lakes, while Rio Lagartos is a protected wetlands area home to animals like the famous pink flamingos, crocodiles, jaguars, and others. We were quoted 900 to 1100 pesos for the 1.5 hour boat ride through Rio Lagartos, but we found a guy who lowered his price to 650 pesos.
Two sinkholes located a few km south of the city, just before the town of Dzitnup. Get there in the mornings before the tour groups arrive. 60 MXN to visit one or 90 MXN for both.
Safety For Women Digital Nomads
Dani and I would go for morning runs through the local neighborhoods and go for walks late at night and we felt completely safe in Valladolid. The Yucatan Peninsula have a reputation of having the safest places in Mexico, and violent crimes are virtually unheard of in Valladolid.
Even when we went on our morning runs, the locals would just stare at us but no one made any attempts to harass or cat-call us.
Get Your Travel Insurance
Don’t forget to purchase travel insurance whether you are a short term or long term traveler. Things can go bad suddenly and you don’t wanna get stuck with thousands of dollars in medical bills. We recommend World Nomads.
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