Chetumal, the capital of the federal state of Quintana Roo, is far from the tourist hordes.
The port, administration and university town is relatively young. Only a few old buildings, including some Victorian-Caribbean-style wooden houses reminiscent of the neighboring Belize, have resisted the elements. Chetumal was victim of hurricanes several times. An allegorical monument recalls Janet, who made landfall near Chetumal as a category 5 hurricane on September 28, 1955, and entered the city as a devastating storm.
In Mexico, the city is nicknamed “Cuna del Mestizaje” (Cradle of Mestizaje), because it is said to have been the place where, in the time of the first Spaniards, a Mayan princess was associated with Gonzalo Guerrero, whose descendants were the first mestizos. For today’s travelers, the main attractions of Chetumal are the fascinating Museo de la Cultura Maya, with its vivid exhibits on the daily life of the Mayan, as well as a stroll along the Boulevard de Bahía, the longest promenade of the Yucatán Peninsula on the Bay of Chetumal. A good place for people watching among the hustle and bustle of downtown Chetumal is the Los Cocos restaurant terrace, which is popular with locals and tourists alike.