Five tourist routes to go through the wonderful Chiapas
Chiapas is a dream and a mystery to be discovered through its rivers, jungles, archaeological zones, museums, music, colour and flavour. A destination that sows the spirit of adventure and cultural identity to its visitors. Diversity is a constant in Chiapas from its town, the cold climate of San Cristóbal, warm in Comitán and hot on the coast, fauna, flora, food, between the flavour and tradition of a town that is pre-Hispanic heritage, colonial and natural. You can not miss it, visit Chiapas and feel life itself.
Here are five amazing routes through Chiapas:
The Zoque Route: Home of the indigenous zoques
The Soconusco Route: Nature, art and architecture in all its splendour
The Living Cultures Route: Legendary region that houses the pre-Hispanic wonder that is Palenque
The Camino Real Route: Virreinal splendour and mystery that houses the lagoons of Monte Bello
The Mayan Route: Home of the Mayans, corner of the Lacandon jungle, a mystery to discover
Northeast of Chiapas, place of the indigenous Zoques, descendants of a rich culture that among its people hides the wonder granted by the land, from its majestic architecture to its natural landscapes like the top of the parrots and the waterfall the downpour, to this The state capital of Tuxtla Gutiérrez, which houses museums, cultural centers and the "Zoomat" zoo, is added to the splendor.
Chiapaneco state capital since 1892, with a demographic, economic acceleration, which is now urbanized and has become the most modern city in the state, has all the services from hotels, besides being one of the departure points for the routes and to host the airport "Ángel Albino Corzo".
At the centre of the city is the civic square where the government palace, the municipal and Congress of the state of Chiapas, the cathedral of San Marcos is located. In the sixteenth century, there is a large carillon with 48 bells, each hour plays a melody to the sound of the bells parades the figures of the apostles on a pedestal at the bottom, a show that is worth witnessing.
In the main axis called Illustrious Men's Walk, there are museums and cultural centers such as the botanical garden, the civic square and the marimba park, located on the central avenue, where the marimba can dance around the place or simply enjoy the show with an ice cream, a traditional drink like the pozole, the tascalate or a good coffee.
The botanical museum that opens from 9:00 3:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 9:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., the regional museum is a sample of an impressive archaeological collection, a sample of pre-Hispanic culture, art, culture, of temporary exhibitions.
The theatre of the city Emilio Rabasa, the cultural centre Jaime Sabines that is the seat of the public library, the historical archive of the state, that bears the name of the great poet that this state was born and we delight in the world. The Víctor Manuel Reyna stadium where the Jaguars team plays.
The Miguel Álvarez del Toro Zoo was founded in 1942 and protects the fauna of the region ranging from the jaguar, the quetzal crocodile, wild boar, deer, tortoise, otter, snakes, spiders, insects, etc., many of them roam in freedom, open from Tuesday to Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
In the town of Ocozocoautla, a rare deep, ancient cave now eroded by water, in the interior red-cheeked parrots live as a first-morning number is a show at 6:00 am, there are cabins and a restaurant.
An impressive spectacle of water and sound when descending 720 stairs is in the depth the cascades "The downpour" and the canyon river of the sale that in itself forms an impressive cliff a form of access is on the federal highway 190.
The coast of Chiapas
250 kilometres of beach between lagoons, arms of sea, marshes, estuaries, between the mother mountain range of Chiapas and the Pacific ocean is the coast, to the southeast of Chiapas between Arriaga, Tapachula and Tonalá.
In the square, you can find pre-Hispanic sculptures and impressive monuments south of Tonalá, this port edge, open sea and unbridled by its waves.
With a variety of recreational options such as boat rides, fishing, beach sports, rent of ATVs.
Mouth of the sky, place where nature made the miracle impressive blue lagoon that communicates to the sea, mangroves, estuaries, a rich area of beach, amazing to the sight and to the pleasure as the bridal veil waterfalls and on the road the grave and the triumph reserve of the biosphere, an immense and deep landscape full of curves, which gives a spectacle of birds and in its depth hides rivers around
Entering the coffee route is tasting the exquisite flavour of Chiapas, the roads to get there start through Tapachula, it is possible to take Highway 200 to Escuintla and from there to approach the Las Garzas pier, which is the starting point of the excursions.
The pearl of Soconusco
A colourful city is Tapachula with memorable spaces and its diverse tropical plantations - especially coffee - in the civic centre, we find the ethnic park, the house of culture in what used to be the municipal palace, the archaeology museum of Soconusco. located on the 8th avenue north, in front of the old municipal palace is the church of San Agustin of the eighteenth century belonging to the neoclassical, has all the services and is also the second largest city in the state
On the lower slopes of the Tacaná volcano and near the Sierra Madre de Chiapas, coffee farmers were planted from the 19th century on the part of European immigrants invited to Mexico by the government of Porfirio Díaz, coffee plantations that spread throughout the region. opens its doors to tourism, with its peculiarity the traveller is enveloped in the aromas of one of the best coffees in the world.
Some of the estates are the Finca de Hamburgo, the Finca Irlanda and the Finca Argovia, all supporting the ecologically sustainable production projects, this route is designed to spend the night in one of their farms and make the tours they offer, you can get more reports at cuilcovalley.com.
The coffee route starts in Tapachula, 20 km from San Francisco Waterfall, 8 km from Finca de Argovia, 10 km from Finca Chiripa and 5 km from Finca Hamburgo, Finca Maravillas and Finca Irlanda.
The farms, besides the production of coffee, offer their visitors the cultivation and sale of tropical and ornamental plants, restaurants, tours and a pleasant stay in the city of Tapachula.
Living cultures route
Starting from Tuxtla Gutiérrez and finishing the Palenque, already very close to Villa Hermosa, Tabasco, two roads connect with this route the federal 190 that connects with the canyon of the sink, Chiapa de Corzo and San Cristóbal de las Casas, the federal highway 199 goes from Rancho Nuevo to Palenque.
Tour aboard an outgoing boat from Chiapa de Corzo, the Chicoasén dam or the Cahuaré jetty, with 32 kilometers to travel, that is, an hour and a half of travel, the time to travel is from 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. hours, its cost is 150 pesos per person, with the option of visiting the eco-tourism park Cañón del Suide with a variety of birds flying over the Grand Canyon, visiting the Christmas tree, the small sanctuary to the Virgin of Guadalupe - if you visit On December 12, the tour is free.
Eco Tourism Park
It offers the option of hiking to know the native flora and fauna, mountain biking, zip line, rappel, kayaks, restaurants, swimming pools and other recreational options, an experience to live in fullness with nature. Special events
With the option of making your wedding a dream in the middle of the sinkhole, on the riverbank, the so-called "Garden of Four Winds" offers this option with transportation for more information visit https://www.sumidero.com
San Cristóbal de las Casas
A colonial city that can be observed by the visitor walking or going up the tourist tram "El coleto" that tells the history of the city in the voice of its chronicler and to the sound of the marimba while taking a walk through the most important places of the city, such as: the Plaza de la Paz, the name given to it in 1994 after the armed uprising of the EZLN, the church of San Nicolás, the city palace, the San Francisco temple, the amber museum, the museum of the popular cultures and to the north the church of Santo Domingo famous for its baroque finishes and its popular market where mostly tostsiles and Lacandones sell handicrafts, hand-woven or loom-based clothes, cloth dolls, among other souvenirs at affordable prices .
San Cristóbal de las Casas is a viceregal city with entertainment to visit the educational park and zoo "San José" 9 km away from San Cristobal de las Casas, gastronomy, nightlife, art, museums, cinema and media at your fingertips..
You can not miss the opportunity to visit the bakeries around and try the marquesote, the turulete, the cazuela or sweeten your mouth with the typical sweets of the region near the cathedral in the candy market.
It is also an opportunity to remember the Zapatista National Liberation Movement by touring its streets or visiting the Kinoki Independent Cultural Forum with more than 1000 titles to choose from in films, art and documentaries in a private room and selection hours, which opens its doors from the 3:30 pm on the Esq. Cinco de Mayo in the centre.
It is difficult to say that it is more attractive in this city, if its architecture, crafts, the cultural mosaic of its Tzotzil people, Tzetzes, Choles and Tojolabales and their international visitors, its pleasant village environment or its essence that is breathed in the walk by this lovely place.
San Juan Chamula
The high places of Chiapas, Tzotzil people with an autochthonous and religious tradition that blends with pagan practices and beliefs of pre-Cortesian origin, its church is world-famous, with a construction of the colonial era, which is lit by hundreds of candles and candles around it, it emits the smell of sedge a plant that covers the floor of the church, veils hung on the top and on the sides the saints made of wood that hang coloured necklaces are 54 major and minor images, when the procession begins it is given a tour to the minor saint and the major saint remains in the temple that is his patron saint San Juan Bautista.
Before Spanish settlers came to this place the town was called San Juan Bautista, but due to the war of the castes in 1869, Spaniards against Indians, the Spaniards killed a sacred mule and since then the Tzotziles pronounced "Chamula", Cha it is death and mule referring to the dead animal, until our das it is known as San Juan Chamula.
An impressive echo is that transmitted by the Tzotzil believers when they pray in their dialect, some of them kneeling with brandy especially the men and women with their children feeding them on the floor, while the man prays for his health and places small candles in the floor in the shape of a pyramid, in the place there are no benches, no high altar.
"The white candles mean health, the yellow ones for the money, green for harvests and work and black for the envies, the candles and the candles are the symbolic food of the saints, when we get sick we do not go to the doctor but we come to the church to heal us, because there are healers inside, "explains a Tzotzil boy named Raúl whose explanation is given to visitors for a fee at the will of the tourist.
Raúl, only ten years old, who speaks Spanish very well, explains that his church is Catholic but that it is mixed with beliefs, so there is no daily Mass but only on Sundays, because inside the church it is not After the wedding ceremony, this is done in the woman's house because it is bought.
The three neighbourhoods that make up the Tzotzil ceremonial centre are represented by crosses that are San Juan, San Pedro and San Sebastián, the two crosses on the other side mean the sun and the moon and the sacred road 9 and the cross of the centre means the centre of the earth or the square universe of the Maya, the four cardinal points
On the sale of women.
The indigenous woman is submissive and committed to her duty, marginalized to our beliefs and human values. In San Juan Chamula the woman buys for 15 thousand or 30 thousand pesos if she knows how to weave, make food and obey who her future husband will be if she doesn't know how to do anything it costs 2 thousand or 3 thousand or otherwise it is given away by the parents.
The man with his "privileges" within this community, can not get married in the church because he can have up to five women if they can keep it according to their tradition and if they do not have money just one.
The entrance to the place is bought in the tourist office of the municipal palace, from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., it is forbidden to take photographs.
Great textile works woven by indigenous people weave the history of the place with saints, toads, milpas and butterflies of the Mayan world and their universe in the numerous stalls that are around them.
A place with tradition and folklore is San Juan Chamula, a true example of the customs and traditions of a people with a millenary heritage given by the Mayan culture.
12 km from San Juan Chamula is Zinacantán famous for its embroidered shawls, the Zinacantecos show visitors the textiles and the way they make them, some offer some simple food such as the rich quesadillas, handmade tortillas with pomegranate dressing, brandy of cane "poch" the visits are free on the part of the zinacantecos that only wait for the visitor to make some purchases, it is the entry pass to a town rich in communication and culture.
A series of waterfalls in a chilly way, with turquoise water and green vegetation.
To get to the waterfalls you have to pay twice, the downtown area with craft shops and sweets, in the vicinity there are cabins for rent, it is an accessible place to visit any day of the year and at any time, it is a majestic spectacle of light and water.
The city of Palenque in the splendour of the Mayan culture is an archaeological zone, in 1952 the renowned Pakal tomb was discovered, it has a museum where objects found in the archaeological zone can be found along the diverse explorations through time. , opens its doors to visitors from Tuesday to Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Palenque was one of the most important metropolia of the Mayan world, between 600 and 900 AD. place of expression and great power because of the complexity of its constructions and artistic manifestations.
One of the most outstanding buildings is the Palace, which has corridors and underground galleries and enclosures, its construction is attributed to King Pakal, was raised at different times for its architectural complexity.
In the temple of the inscriptions is the sarcophagus of Pakal, which is closed to the public to avoid its deterioration, the temple of the red queen is in the same place.
To the northeast of the palace is located the Conjunto de la Cruz which is located in steeply stepped pyramids, although they have lost part of their walls, these temples preserve their decorations and have dozens of glyphs.
The magnificence of this mythical place gives the opportunity to feel run through the skin to one of the most enigmatic, wonderful and advanced civilizations at the time of history.
Viceroyal convents and monuments dress this route from the temperate city of Comitan, to the splendid lagoons of Montebello.
Copanahuastla, city tzetzo of the sixteenth century where the Dominican friars built a large convent, at the beginning of the seventeenth century the place was uninhabited by epidemics, which tells the legend was divine punishment because they continued to worship their pagan deities, today you can see the ruins of this place.
It is one of the most beautiful and interesting cities of the state, cultural sites and art houses this city, which was founded by Dominican friars in the middle of the sixteenth century, the central park that leads to the Plaza de Santo Domingo is a good place to take the tourist tram and take a walk around the place, which is opposite the Rosario Castellanos cultural center and has at least five passengers.
Museums, temples and the archaeological zone of Junchavín, are places that you can not miss.
Lagoons of Montebello
The Lagunas de Montebello National Park was the first protected area by the federal government in the state of Chiapas in 1959.
With several kilometres of lakes or lagoons, the bodies of water are surrounded by oaks and pine and multiple plants, in terms of fauna inhabit quetzales woodpeckers, flying squirrels and white-tailed deer, hundreds of lakes such as the aquatint lagoons, the enchanted and forest Blue, the beautiful lagoon of Montebello is light blue, it is an ejido park where we find picnic areas, horseback riding, rowing boats and meadows to make a picnic.
This space requires several days of travel to know all its splendour along several kilometres of coexistence with nature
Route of more than 400 kilometres, the name of one of the most important civilizations, is a route parallel to the border with Guatemala, contemplates ceremonial temples and natural beauties such as the impressive Lacandona Forest, a tropical jungle inhabited by indigenous people whose beliefs and culture never ceases to amaze for his great Mayan legacy.
The Guacamayas Ecotourism Center, a place rich in wildlife, offers cabins to the public, boat trips along the Lacantún and Tzendales rivers, visits to the venadario, the aviary and orchid garden of the town, on the walks it is possible to observe animal tracks such as Jaguar while in the trees hang spider monkeys, snakes, crocodiles and birds of all species that sound the ride, this place sponsors various scientific research centres and it is possible to arrive by federal highway 307.
It is the river port where the boats that take the Usumacinta River to the archaeological zone of Yaxchilán are taken, there are some ecotourism centres like the "Escudo Jaguar" that offer to lodge in rustic cabins, restaurants, camping and tours through some paths of the jungle.
The archaeological zone that is located in the thickness of the Selva Lacandona city that was in all its splendour between the years 350 and 810 d.C. reaching its maximum splendour during the reign of the Jagua I shield in the seventh century, one of the main ceremonial spaces.
The Great Plaza which is accessed through "The Labyrinth" for its corridors and enclosures, there are sets of buildings that resemble a residential character, large stelae and lintels that make this place famous, because in its carved is written the story about the political life of the city.
In the Great Acropolis with carvings of the Jaguar IV bird, inside is a sculpture of the beheaded dignitary with his head to one side, the legend says that when the head returns to its place it will be the end of an era, the fauna of the place It is abundant, you can observe herds of animals running above the level in which the area is located, such as the Saragos monkeys.
There are two ways to get to this area, one is paying a high price to the Lacandones to take them in their vehicles and the other is to walk a distance of 10 kilometres to the temples.
This Mayan ceremonial centre is a small archaeological zone from the middle of the 8th century AD. Across the great plaza stands the Acropolis with a series of pyramids built on top of natural elevations; the building of the painting presents murals in three chambers, in the first they refer to the formal presentation of the heir to the throne and it is also known as the "procession of the musicians", in the second chamber there is a battle and the torture of the prisoners and in the third the celebration with dances and dance for the triumph against Chaan Muan II who offers his blood to the gods.
There are guides in the jungle trails that offer the opportunity to know its history and give a presentation to the immense fauna that covers the Lacandon Jungle, it is a place that should not be missed.