Campeche

The fortified city

Occupying the western third of the Yucatán Peninsula, the State of Campeche (pronounced kahm-PEH-chay) spans 56,800 sq. kms and like its neighboring states of Yucatan and Quintana Roo it is almost entirely flat. About 40% of the state is covered with jungle, and Mexico’s largest biosphere reserve (Calakmul) spreads along the state’s remote eastern border. With fairly typical Gulf of Mexico beaches, Campeche attracts visitors looking to escape the resort crowds.

Campeche State lures visitors with its charming colonial port, several massive Mayan ceremonial centers, and wild jungle reserves. The state has a small population.

Its fascinating cultural and ecological attractions are an ideal option for vacationers wanting a “back roads” Mexico experience that still includes some remarkable attractions.

The State’s Capital is the coastal colonial town of Campeche. A mere 2-1/2 hour drive to the south of Mérida, Campeche is a captivating port filled with naval history, Baroque Spanish architecture, and aging beauty. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1999, an event that has spurred restoration of the city’s splendid architectural treasures. Specifically, UNESCO cited Campeche City as “a model of the city planning of a baroque colonial city. More that 1,000 buildings of historical value have survived as witness of how space and time were superimposed in the various important historical states in Mexico since the 16th century.

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