Ciudad del Carmen, the pearl of the Gulf
Nicknamed "the Pearl of the Gulf", either because of its brilliant appearance at a distance, its ancient history or because of its industrial, oil and entrepreneurial character. For the traveler passing through Campeche, this is a key transit point and full of surprises for curious eyes.
First, its location
Ciudad del Carmen is located in the northern part of Laguna de Términos, right between the Palmar Peninsula and Punta de Xicalango. If you are traveling from the capital city of Campeche, the transfer will take you a little more than an hour and a half, traveling along Highway 180, a beautiful route that goes along the national coast. There is also air connectivity with Mexico City.
The destination is fabulous
The marine breeze will be the first thing that receives you when arriving on this island, besides the smile of its inhabitants and a great deck of activities to realize. Without a doubt, a good way to start exploring it is through its flavors. Its municipal market offers the freshest flavors you can imagine. Try the roasted fish, a delicacy that the "carmelitas" boast proudly. Add to that dishes like octopus, crab, shrimp and other seafood. Don't forget to order a traditional cocktail.
The walk after a good breakfast can be done by the boardwalk of Ciudad del Carmen and its magnificent lighthouse, an eternal guide for marine travelers. Before your eyes will open the immensity of the Gulf of Mexico. It is also likely that your eyesight will meet some oil platform, a symbol of the gigantic oil prosperity that has accompanied this region.
Steps through history
Now that you've eaten and your legs are stretched out, how about exploring the Centre? As always, the colorful facades of the first painting are perfect for taking some pictures, as well as the Municipal Palace and Zaragoza Park (also known as Plazuela Marín), with its playful squirrels and a beautiful kiosk crowned in copper. This space was built in 1854 and is perfect for buying a beautiful handicraft, made with shells or snails, or a comfortable hammock.
Walking here and there, you will find the beautiful Church of Nuestra Señora del Carmen, which, by the way, is the patron saint of the city and you will surely see it on the boardwalk. If you want to do the route of religious constructions, it is also worth visiting the Church of Jesus and the Church of the Assumption. Once you have entered the promenade, also visit the Monument to the Flag, which you can climb and get a fabulous view of the Carmelite metropolis.
Nuestra Señora del Carmen
It is said that the image found in the church was rescued from the flames in the 19th century, which has made it the patron saint of difficult causes, as well as the sailors who arrive in the city and thank them for concluding their journeys well.
If you love the city, you can be sure that the nearby beaches will make you fall in love completely. Among those you can enjoy are the North beach (perfect for picnics), Managua beach and Caracol beach. One of the most beautiful, near Ciudad del Carmen, is Playa Sabancuy, whose white sand and soft waves have become a favorite among travelers.
But the aquatic charm is not only enjoyed in the sea. On the other side is Laguna de Términos, named a biosphere reserve since 1994 and offering an exuberant combination of flora and fauna, with beautiful scenery that seems like a dream. Here it is possible to enjoy a boat ride and take excellent photos.
More to enjoy in Campeche
Palizada: Magical town of enormous color, one of the great jewels of the South of the country.
Calakmul: A Mayan archaeological site that offers a magnificent example of the pre-Hispanic wealth of the State.
San Francisco de Campeche: City of enormous tradition, with its walls designed to defend against pirate attacks in the seventeenth century.