Yucatán is a state in the north western part of the Yucatán Peninsula, with its coastline facing the Gulf of Mexico. To the east is the state of Quintana Roo, home of Cancun and Cozumel; Campeche is to the south.
Yucatán is home to the Chicxulub Crater; geologists say that this crater dates back approx 65 million years from the Earth's collision with a meteorite, and it is implicated with the extinction of the dinosaurs. In early historic times, Yucatán was one of the centers of the Pre-Colombian Maya civilization and the Maya people still form a significant part of the state's population. The Spanish came to conquer in the 1500s, "conquering" the Maya people and replacing the Maya city of T'ho with the capital city, Merida. Spanish conquistadors stayed and intermarried with the local Maya population, becoming a part of the historic heritage of Yucatán. In the late 1800’s, henequen, a plant grown for its strong fibers that were turned into twine, became known as the “green gold" of Yucatan. The sale of "sisal rope" (named for Sisal, the port from which this rope was shipped around the world) became responsible for much of the wealth of Yucatan. Henequen made Yucatan into one of Mexico’s richest States, and turned Merida at the turn of the 20th Century into a city with more millionaires than any other city worldwide. Today, one can still visit henequen-producing haciendas, though they are few. Other haciendas, many of them abandoned and neglected in the mid-20th Century, are today private homes, hotels, meeting places and museums.
Images from Mérida, Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Chichen Itza, Uman, Celestun, and Uxmal.