The Best Restaurants in Valladolid, Mexico

Valladolids Yucatec cuisine will set you up for some time exploring
Valladolid's Yucatec cuisine will set you up for some time exploring | © Ronnie Chua / Alamy Stock Photo
Alexander Robinson

Copy Editor

Simple, traditional and invariably delicious, the food in Valladolid centers around Yucatec classics served throughout the city’s restaurants.

Next to concrete Cancún, this part of the Yucatán peninsula’s steamy center oozes historic charm. Streets of Spanish colonial houses painted in blues and pinks run to palm-filled plazas, watched over by bell towers. Most visitors pop by on their way to or from neighboring Chichén Itzá, but it’s more than worth overnighting in a period hotel or hacienda, soaking up the atmosphere and sampling the wealth of simple, traditional Mayan restaurants.

1. La Palapita de Los Tamales

Restaurant, Mexican

Iglesia La Candelaria, Plaza Zaragoza, in Tlacotalpan, UNESCO World Heritage Site, Veracruz state, Mexico
© Witold Skrypczak / Alamy Stock Photo

The clue’s in the name at this small, family-owned restaurant near Candelaria church, which almost exclusively serves tamales. Low prices and big wooden tables characterize this spot, whose whitewash-and-distressed-concrete dining room leads onto an outdoor terrace. Many of the recipes are genuinely local – including the delicious chachacua tamales (with chicken, egg and annatto red sauce) and the refreshing, chaya-infused lemonade – with takeout options available.

2. Yum Kaax El Buen Sabor

Restaurant, Mexican

Poc Chuc this is a traditional Mexican Recipe from the Yucatan made of thin grilled pork cutlets with pickled onions and avocado closeup in the plate
© Sergii Koval / Alamy Stock Photo

Even budgeting backpackers don’t balk at the prices in this simple family dining room. Food is ultra-fresh and much of it regional – try the poc chuc (pork marinaded in a citrus reduction, served with refried black beans and pico de gallo salad) and local favorite longaniza de valladolid (smoked pork sausage with annatto, garlic and chili). The restaurant is a few blocks north of Parque Francisco Cantón Rosado, the main square.

4. El Mesón de Marqués

Bar, Mexican

Mexican enchilada in a baking dish with the ingredients on the table. horizontal view from above
© Sergii Koval / Alamy Stock Photo

El Mesón de Marqués exemplifies Valladolid’s charm, with tables scattered by the cloisters of an atrium garden in a stately townhouse hotel in the city center. The menu is a mix of Yucatec and pan-Mexican dishes – seek the chilaquiles and the chicken and cheese enchiladas – ready to be washed down with a local beer or a long, lemony margarita.

5. K’Uxub

Restaurant, Mexican

Courtesy of Muuch boutique hotel /

Sitting in the Muuch boutique hotel – a converted Spanish colonial townhouse just north of the main plaza, K’Uxub offers a menu of modern Yucatec food cooked with pizzazz. Yucatec chilaquiles come in a rich red sauce, stuffed with chicken, cheese and avocado. Breakfasts are huge, and the restaurant serves great cocktails and mocktails. Try ya’ax, a deliciously refreshing, non-alcoholic mix of pineapple, orange, chaya, coriander, mint and aloe vera – perfect in the sweltering heat of the day.

6. Ix Cat Ik

Restaurant, Mexican

Sopa de Lima, Lime soup, chicken broth, Mexican food of Yucatan
© Esdelval / Alamy Stock Photo

Valladolid’s best and most authentic Mayan restaurant is easy to miss – sitting a little outside the center in a modest converted house on the Tulum road – but it’s well worth a detour. Beautifully presented dishes, prepared entirely with ingredients grown on-site or sourced from local smallholders, are served in a terrace garden, where plants are labeled with their Mayan names. Signatures include boox kaax píibil (chicken breast in chili sauce), served on a thick Yucatec tortilla.

7. Atrio del Mayab

Restaurant, Mexican

Cochinita Pibil Mexican food with pico de gallo lemon and chili
© FOODSTUFF / Alamy Stock Photo

Set in a lush tropical garden, watched over by flitting birds and a giant facsimile Olmec head sculpture, Atrio offers a mixed menu of local and international food and long, refreshing juices and cocktails. Beef or pork cochinita pibil (with shredded meat, beans and chili) come with generously stuffed baskets of corn tortilla. There are also steaks and pasta for international tastes, and if you’re here early, breakfasts are big enough to keep you going for most of the day.

Full up? Explore Valladolid from a beautiful hotel with your loved one, bookable through Culture Trip. Branch out further into the peninsula of Yucatán by exploring other spectacular destinations such as the white beaches of Tulum, and sample delicious food while you’re there, with a punchy margarita in hand.

landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.

Winter Sale Offers on Our Trips

Incredible Savings

Edit article