Built 373 years ago, according to the date of registration on the main access door, the Hermitage of Tekax (Ermita de Tekax), erected in honor of San Diego de Alcalá de Henares, stands on the top of the hill in which it was built, right next to the town of Tekax.
Regardless of the day, throughout the week the inhabitants of the town and the tourists who visit Tekax, ned to make an effort to go up and down the increasingly dangerous stairs that allow access to this temple.
The site has received thousands of visitors whose “footprint” is visible in the stones that are already quite slippery, so it is necessary to be careful while climbng up or coming down, to avoid an accident that would end the fun of the trip, and the enthusiasm of the visitors.
There are very few who have had the opportunity to enter into it, most are content to rest after concluding the ascent on one of its sides, even under the shadow of the tree that is located aside the main facade.
The hermitage is located at the top of a hill called “sierra baja“, about 80 meters high; it is accessed through a ramp with a stone floor and it was built next to a masonry parapet with low pilasters.
The place consists of an atrium delimited by a wall of masonry, sacristy and two pieces. In the Catalog of Religious Constructions of Yucatan it is reported that inside the flat roof with wooden beams and vaults is supported by three arches, in addition, the main door has two lateral accesses.
According to a local legend, the “Ermita” (Hermitage) was built because the image of San Dieguito used to appear in a well that is located on the side of the building.
According to the legend, the statue of San Dieguito was found on that hill and it was transferred to the main church of San Juan Bautista that is located in the center of the town, but one day, it disappeared, and was found at the bottom of the well, it was retrieved out of there, and the incedent was interpreted as the desire of San Dieguito for a sanctuary there, and so they built it for him.
In the first days of November the “image of San Diego” is celebrated, with various festivities that include masses, parades, prayer, bullfights, pyrotechnic games, regional dances and mechanical games.
From the atrium of the Hermitage it is possible to see the whole town of Tekax. It is indeed an incredible view of town.
About 100 meters from the Hermitage, along a path, there is a cave where it is possible to see a small stalactite.
Tekax, also called “the Sultana de la sierra”, is located in the south of the state, approximately one hour and 15 minutes from Mérida, in the region known as Ruta Puuc.
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