San Cristobal de las Casas and Sumidero Canyon, Mexico

December 2008

After a very long bus ride over what seemed like millions of speed bumps we arrived in San Cristobal de las Casas. We followed our tried and true method of finding a hotel room by looking up one in Lonely Planet, finding that it’s full and then wandering around until we found something else. We were right near the center of town, within walking distance of the Plaza Central and Cathedrals the city is known for.

Catedral de San Cristobal
San Cristobal de las Casas
Detail work on the Catedral de San Cristobal
Iglesia de San Francisco

The colonial architecture was beautiful but our absolute favorite part of the city was the night market that would pop up in the central plaza by Catedral de San Cristobal. There was amazing food, corn on the cob with butter, cheese and chili powder,  and corn or coconut ice cream. We walked up a hill to the Iglesia de Cerrito to catch sunset over the city below. I had only started taking up photography as a hobby a year before we started this trip and I cringe to look back on these photos now, the memories are good but the photos not so much.

Iglesia de Cerritos
Sunset over San Cristobal de las Casas
Sunset behind the banner and mountains

While staying San Cristobal we arranged a day trip to Parque Nacional Cañon del Sumidero. A van took us to Chiapa de Corzo and the Río Grijalva where we boarded a boat that took us up canyon.

La Pila Fountain in Chiapa de Corzo

Sumidero Canyon was incredible, up to 3300 feet deep and loaded with massive crocodiles and interesting geology.  The river winds several miles through the canyon and ends up on a massive reservoir.

Sumidero Canyon

I had no idea there were crocodiles that size in Mexico, some of them were over 10 feet long!

Massive Crocodile

Christmas Tree Falls were the geologic highlight of the canyon. Another very mineral rich water source creating natural mineral terraces that were covered in vegetation.

Christmas Tree Falls
Sumidero Canyon

After we left Sumidero Canyon our van suffered a smashed out window from a rock on the highway so we squeezed into another bus on its way back to San Cristobal. I got a good seat on the steps but some were not so lucky and had to sit on the engine casing next to the bus driver. After another day in the city we set off for Guatemala.

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