Merida Market Tour And Cooking Class

From USD 45.6
Per Person
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Tour Information

Tour Details


Get a true taste of Yucatecan cuisine and meet the local people of Merida as you shop at the market for fresh ingredients and prepare several tasty dishes. Your half-day culinary tour includes a cooking class at the home of a local host with the assistance of your knowledgeable guide. Learn about various culinary traditions of Mexico and enjoy the light lunch youve prepared! Numbers are limited to 12 people, ensuring an intimate experience with a small group of like-minded food lovers.


  • Lunch included
  • Family friendly
  • Led by a local guide

Know More about this tour

After you meet your guide and small group at a central location, drive by air-conditioned minivan to one of Meridas markets less frequented by tourists. As you walk around the bustling outdoor market, your guide will explain about the origins and uses of some of the fruits and vegetables many produced in the Yucatan region.

With help from your bilingual guide, converse with local vendors as you choose seasonal produce and other ingredients in preparation for your cooking class. Take in the aromas and colors of the beautiful chilies and unfamiliar tropical fruits, and learn about such delights as achiote, chile habanero and pepita de calabaza (pumpkin seed).

Next, drive to the personal home of your local host to cook and sample some Yucatecan specialties, such as salbutes (Mayan tacos), panuchos (black bean-filled tostadas), papadzules (enchiladas topped with pumpkin seed sauce) and codzitos (stuffed and fried tortillas). Under the guidance of your host, you'll have help every step of the way and learn to prepare delicious beverages like horchata (sweetened rice drink) or hibiscus flower tea.

As you prepare your meal, youll be introduced to a few Spanish and Mayan words, and learn more about the cuisine of the Yucatan, which includes some of the most varied dishes of Mexico. Your host and guide will describe local culinary traditions, the influence of other cultures on the cuisine, and explain some of the differences between the Yucatecos and people from other parts of Mexico.

Finally, taste the delicious plates you prepared and enjoy a light lunch as you chat more with your small group and host. Afterward, your guide will help you hire a taxi for the return to central Merida (an approximate USD $5 ride).

Inclusions for Merida Market Tour And Cooking Class

  • Professional guide
  • Food
  • Beverages (non-alcoholic)
  • Cooking session at local family home
  • Transport by public transit to market and to the local home

Exclusions for Merida Market Tour And Cooking Class

  • Gratuities (optional)
  • Transport from cooking lesson location to Merida (approx USD $4 taxi ride)

Additional Info

Confirmation will be received at time of booking

Please advise any specific dietary requirements at time of booking

Cancellation Policy
  • If you cancel within 3 calendar days (72 hours) of the scheduled departure time, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel between 4 to 7 Calendar days before scheduled tour departure,the cancellation charge will be 50% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel at least 8 calendar days in advance of the scheduled departure time, there is no cancellation fee. You will receive Full Refund for the paid amount.
  • Please note that in case of No show, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the listed tour fare.
  • Please note tours booked using discount coupon codes will be non refundable.

Write A Review

37 reviews by the users

  • A real non- touristy Mexican experience. Better tasting food than the best restaurants. Shared with a Mexican family in their own home. Highly recommended. Gustavo is an amazing guy, multi-talented and really knows his cooking. Well explained in English. His aunt and grandmother were fully involved in the process. A lot of love in that family.

  • I was the only person on this tour but I was treated with very well. Allejo Mantilla, the chef and guide, gave me a great tour and with and a hands on cooking experience.

  • Met our guide Alejo and walked to the Market Lucas de Galvez to do our shopping before getting on a bus to the home of our host Bertha. Warning - this is a REAL cooking class. Lots of chopping, dicing, peeling, boiling, roasting before finally eating. And that whats makes it so enjoyable. All in all we had an excellent time eating and conversing. An Uber transport was arranged by Alejo at the end of the evening to return us back to our hotel in Centro. Both Alejo and Bertha were excellent hosts.

  • This is a must-do if you are in Merida. Alejo is just the best guide you can ever encounter. Vibrant, full of energy, always smiling, knowledgable, and immediately you feel you have a friend. The tour starts at the market, which in itself, is an experience. You encounter the real people of Merida and their food. Then the bus ride through the town is another great experience. But the best is yet to come. The moment you meet Berta, a joyful, energetic Yuacateca who makes you feel at home the moment you enter her gate. She looks over everything we bring from the market and between her and Alejo we proceed all to cook. This is a hands-on experience so you really get your hands dirty! Once the succulent aromas start to fill Berta's kitchen, we start admiring the fruits of our labor and in what seems like minutes but are really a couple of hours you are sitting down in a nicely dressed table eating all the mexican delicacies which between all of us we have prepared. The process to return to the hotel was easy and fast. Thank you Alejo and Berta for a great experience. Hope all who visit Merida have the pleasure of your tour.

  • Wonderful experience, highly recommend.

  • Alejo was a wonderful host and guide. Everything ran smoothly, from meeting at the start to getting back to our hotel. We had a great time exploring the market, learning about some of the unique local foods, and discussing food and local history. We then spent a lovely afternoon cooking and sharing a lovely meal with Alejo and his family. A wonderful experience that brings you inside the lives of people who make Merida their home.

  • We really enjoyed our day spent with Alejo touring the market and then preparing a feast with Bertha at her home. We had been to several markets previously, but it was great to get Alejo's pointers on selecting the best products. It was also a highlight getting to learn about the spice mixes and sampling them from the spice vendor. Tip: the dry spices we purchased to bring home were not a problem at the border or security. However, the spices that had been mashed into a paste were not allowed, TSA did not like the constancy - and we had more than the 100mL limit for carry on. So put any spices in paste form in your checked luggage! Alejo is very knowledgeable about Yucatecan food, its history, and significance.

    Preparing the food at Bertha's was a fun social event, dividing up and rotating through the prep work chopping, blending, frying, pickling and plating. The food was delicious and Both Bertha and Alejo did a good job coaching and explaining through the meal prep. We thoroughly enjoyed this day and have prepared some of the dishes for our friends back home!

  • I had a wonderful time attending this class. Alejo, my guide, picked me up on time. Our shopping trip to the local market was great. I was introduced to many regional goods not readily available in Southern California but essential for Yucatecan dishes. Then I learned how to make several dishes including eggs with a delicious pepita sauce. Our hostess was fascinating both as an excellent chef and as a historian. She related a personal history related to the long lasting battle between the Maya and Mexican government. Since then I have planted a Chaya bush in my garden and located a few local resources for my new cuisine! My patients have been so helpful assisting me in locating these very special ingredients.! I have several cuttings thanks to them.

    I would highly recommend this experience to anyone with a serious interest in culture and history.

  • Absolutely loved our afternoon with Alejo and Bertha! The tour round the market was a great insight into Mexican life and food, I think my favourite was the tortillaria watching all the tortillas get made. Alejo's knowledge was amazing, and he knew all the English names for everything as well as where to get them in England!. Back at Bertha's there was something for everyone to do, and you could get as involved as you wanted followed by an amazing feast. Great way to learn about how Mexican traditions and how people live, Alejo was really open and happy to answer any questions we threw at him. Would highly recommend this tour - good value for money, transport all sorted although you pay for your own taxi / bus back to town but they arranged it for us, catered to food allergies/ dietary requirements and preferences. Thanks Alejo and Bertha!

  • My wife and I recently visited Merida and we're looking for a truly unique experience. This tour was more than that. From the first meet and greet with our guide Gustavo, it was clear that we were in for a terrific time. Gustavo first brought us to the Merida markets, an experience in itself. He shared his extensive knowledge of local ingrredients as well as the market environment. He was so accommodating with us and answered all of our many questions. He introduced to vendors and shared the history of Merida throughout the whole tour. We learned so much. Thanks Gustavo!! It just kept getting better as we accompanied him to the home of our host Berte. There we were welcomed like family! We then spent am entire afternoon preparing dishes with Gustavo and Berte. She was welcoming and gracious. Gustavo provided expert translation and we all shared many laughs throughout our time there. We ended the afternoon at the dinner table sharing the meal we had prepared as Gustavo and Berte continued to give us the history of each dish.
    We have to say, out if all of the tours and excursions we've taken in mexico thus one was by far the best, most relaxing and enjoyable experience. Truly a once in a lifetime experience to immerse yourself in the authentic Maya experience.

    Our many thanks to Gustavo and Berte. Your graciousness and kindness will not be forgotten.
    Rob and Eleanor
    Orleans, Ontario

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