There are so many fun day trips to take when you are based in Merida, Mexico. The Yucatan is full of adventures. With limited time, only ten days, we were able to enjoy four great experiences utilizing my Lonely Planet guide and Mayaland Tours.
Flamingos in the Yucatan
Celestun Biosphere Reserve is a short 50 minute drive from Merida. We went with ten other folks, from Italy, Germany and the US in a comfy bus. The road was smooth all the way out to the gulf of Mexico. The park is named for the founder of the area, Celes Tuno and the main industry is the collection of salt. The protected park is over 145,000 acres and is located along the Emerald Coast of the Yucatan.
Once there we boarded boats and zipped out to the middle of the lake where hundreds of flamingos were dipping their heads underwater to nibble on shrimp larvae. It is in the eating of these small nibbles that the Flamingos get their color. When they are first born, they are nearly pure white. Then as they feast, their feathers take on the pink hues.
While our boat driver was very respectful of the birds and didn’t get us too close or make any sudden movements while near them, it would have been better if I had been in a kayak and able to stay for much longer. I didn’t want to leave. They were truly mesmerizing. There were a few hundred feasting while we were there. In January and February there can be upwards of thousands.
Our boat excursion continued to the island of birds were we saw the swooping and heard the chatter of Frigats, Herons, Pelicans, Cormorants, and many, many more species.
We then slowly made our way through a mangrove before heading back to the beach, lunch and swimming.
A fun full day. Coming up – visiting three Mayan temple sites.
Until then, have a happy day dreaming of flamingos and sunny beaches.