Think Mexico and you think pinatas, tacos, and beaches that disappear into the horizon. You don’t think of funky architecture or modern art. Nor would you think those things would be found on Isla Mujeres.
As I mentioned before, Isla Mujeres is a quiet place where people can be alone with their thoughts and pursue their creative dreams. This manifests in many ways, from the quirky houses facing the Caribbean to the Sculpture Garden on Punta Sur, the southern tip of the island. Admission to the Sculpture Park is $3 USD per person and completely worth it. The Sculpture Garden is a winding path taking you out to sea through a labyrinth of modern works, pieces of the industrial world jutting against the Yucatan Penisula’s natural beauty. The artists who created these objects come from all over the world, many from Central and South America, and a few from the United States. Sharp red metal objects pierce the sky. A stone figure stares. And at the end, the crumbling remains of an ancient Mayan ruin while the sea crashes against the cliff below–a reminder that these lands have seen artists come and go.
If you go to Punta Sur by golf cart, as we did, you will likely pass the Seashell House (also known as the Conch Shell House), another unique art form that pierces the skyline with its curvy, pointed roof. We passed it and unfortunately I didn’t capture any decent pictures. We were also crunched for time and didn’t know we could stop by and look around. The Seashell House can be rented out, and it seems visitors are welcome. In fact, there are a number of things I had wanted to do at Isla Mujeres and didn’t. I was thankful we stumbled upon the Sculpture Garden by accident, but I also would have loved to have toured the Seashell House as well as some other unusual art forms–the tombs at the municipal cemetery, another hot spot we passed and didn’t have time to savor. This cemetery is remarkably vibrant. Walk through this cemetery and you’re sure to believe it’s better on the other side.