Sotuta de Peon - Live Hacienda - Village Resort
Every traveler to Yucatán should include a visit to one of the many haciendas in the region, most of which at one time were part of the history of "green gold ", or henequén production. And if you want an unforgettable experience into the past, go to Hacienda Sotuta de Peón, the only henequén/sisal fiber hacienda in the area that continues to work as it did 100 years ago. The hacienda also offers comfortable lodging in 30 cabañas: the ultimate in peace and quiet.
During the two and a half hour tour, the guests will learn about the origins of henequén and details of the henequén boom here in Yucatán, a fascinating adventure-filled history, described by a knowledgeable and personable guide. The tour begins in the hacienda house, visiting each room where the hacienda owners lived. Tile floors, 6-meter ceilings, and beautiful antique furniture have been lovingly presented and restored by the current owner, who purchased the hacienda in 1985 and spent 20 years getting it ready for visitors and to continue producing henequén. This meant investing in machinery repair as well as restoration of the buildings.
The production process, which begins with the planting, continues on to the peeling, then drying, and finally the packing, is interestingly explained and the transformation from threads to ropes to textiles is shown. This is a "live" tour where you will see the centuries old machinery actually working.
After seeing this interesting part of the process, the visitors will get onto the horse-drawn platforms (called trucks), and take a ride into the henequén fields/plantations. Along the way, they will stop off at a Mayan home where Don Antonio will show you the simple daily life of the Mayas.
More than 80 Mayan families work at the hacienda, living in adjacent communities. One of the workers in the finished goods plant is over 80 years old, and has been working there for more than 65 years.
The last stop on the ride takes you to a magnificent underwater cenote where you can swim: Dzul Ha (Gentleman of the Water); there are change rooms. The tour ends at the main house of the hacienda where, if you like, you can go to the restaurant and savor their delicious Yucatecan cuisine.
Tour times: 10 am and 1 pm, Monday to Sunday (closed on Mondays from Aug. 25 to Oct. 27, 2014)
Distance from Mérida : 45 kilometers (25 miles)
Tour rates (including transportation hotel-hacienda-hotel, tour, and lunch): Adults: $770 pesos; Children: $385 pesos.
Tour rates (only tour): Adults: $365 pesos; Children: $180 pesos. Restaurant service optional.
There is also a night tour at 6 pm Monday to Saturday for groups of minimum 40 persons. (closed on Mondays from Aug. 25 to Oct. 27, 2014)
Tour of Cenote Dzul Ha: (Caballero del Agua) at the Hacienda Sotuta de Peon. Monday to Sunday: Package includes: Tour in "truck". Visit to Casa Maya. Life jacket at cenote. Optional: Restaurant service. Adult $220.00 pesos. Children: $110.00 pesos.