The Mérida area is famous for being the best place in Mexico to buy hammocks. The good Mexican hammocks are the ones that hark back to an ancient Mayan tradition: hand-made; dyed with natural, local plant products; and woven from the sisal fibres that are easily obtained from the native cactus plants. A local pointed me to one of the top hammock outlets in Mérida, and I picked myself up a beauty of a genuine Yucatán hammock.
Got it for 700 pesos (USD$70), down from 1,200. Lonely Planet says that less than USD$100 is a pretty good deal, as long as it's genuine. And I'm pretty sure it is.
My new sisal hammock.
The shopkeeper claims that his hammocks will:
- Last at least 20 years.
- Naturally repel mosquitoes.
- Survive machine washing.
- Survive rain and other severe weather.
Time will tell the validity of these claims. I'm planning to spend a few nights in my new hammock, on the beach at Tulum, and in the jungle at Palenque. These will be good opportunities to give my new hammock a baptism.
Sorry — I mean bris.