Hello our dear 3 readers, we took a break from the blog but now we are back with full force ready to report on trips to Iceland, Mexico, and Nashville. Let’s start with our most recent trip to the state of Chiapas in the south-east part of Mexico. We needed to go to Mexico City for a wedding and decided to take a few more days to visit the state that many friends have said was breathtaking.
We really didn’t have big expectations, but Chiapas blew us away…. so here it is:
We took a 2:00 am flight from SD to Tuxla Gutierrez, which is the capital city of the state. We were picked up by our driver, Abel. I had been in touch with him for several months to plan our transportation around the sights we wanted to see. The freeways are dangerous due to the condition of the pavement, the risk of getting stopped by an indigenous community check-point where they demand money to let you pass, and of course the normal risk of just vandals or thieves robbing your car.
We drove 1 hour to San Cristobal de Las Casas, which was going to be our hub for the next 4 nights. This blog is the combination of all the sights we visited in San Cristobal, in several days.
We arrived at the hotel with a super warm welcome, we were able to do check in at 7:00 am, got an upgrade and they gave us breakfast (we looked hungry and tired). Immediately after we took a quick nap and got ready to explore this beautiful city.
This was the original room we booked.
Our first stop was the hot chocolate shop. Like a Starbucks but instead of coffee, you could choose amazing hot chocolate combinations. All hand made on the spot. We ordered a couple different ones to try, but the cardamom one was amazing.
The city, especially the historic center, has maintained its Spanish colonial layout, with narrow cobblestone streets, roofs covered in red clay tile and wrought iron balconies with flowers. The facades of the buildings vary from Baroque to Neoclassical and Moorish, painted in various colors.
San Cristóbal is considered to be the “cultural capital” of the state. Designated a “Pueblo Mágico” (Magical Village) in 2003, it was further recognized as “The most magical of the Pueblos Mágicos” by President Felipe Calderón in 2010.
Much of this culture is associated with the city’s and municipality’s large indigenous population, which is mostly made up of Tzotzils and Tzeltals.
Constructed around 1528, this cathedral sits on the main square. It was renovated in the 18th century and damaged by the earthquake in 2018. They are taking forever to fix it, so we were not able to see it from the inside.
Walking around the town is so much fun, from handcraft stores, cute cafes and indigenous culture. We could have stayed for weeks here.
Street markets are full of colors.
They sell Macadamia nuts, they crack them open on the spot. They were really delicious and tasted like butter. Not even close in flavor to the ones we buy here in the U.S.
They also have this cheese called Queso Chiapaneco. Eitan was addicted to it and got it at every meal possible.
For lunch, we chose a traditional Chiapas restaurant where we tried the famous delicious local dish “Sopa de pan” or bread soup.
They had marimba music and traditional dancing!
We accompanied the meal with a local craft beer that was not good at all.
We walked around more, the sunset was perfect timing to go back to the cathedral to see it’s yellow facade illuminate with the sun.
The next day, after our visit to the indigenous communities (blog post to come), we decided to go to the best restaurant in the town.
It was about 15 min walk from our hotel.
The restaurant Tierra y Cielo, from chef Martha Zepeda was an incredible experience. We got the tasting menu which included several dishes made with local ingredients like rabbit, beef tongue, short rib, mole and tamal.
The tasting was $40 which while it is expensive for Chiapas, it was cheap for us coming from California. Totally worth it!
TO BE CONTINUED