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San Cristobal de las Casas

Travel Guide North America Mexico Chiapas San Cristobal de las Casas

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Introduction

San Cristobal - 19

San Cristobal - 19

© All Rights Reserved dontrobus

San Cristobal de las Casas is located in the central highlands of Chiapas. The city is located at 2100 metres (6890 feet) and is named after Bartolome De Las Casas who was a Spanish priest that defended the rights of Indigenous people and was the states first bishop. The city is the third largest city in Chiapas with a population of around 140,000 people. The city has a wonderful colonial feel and the nearby Mayan ruins are stunning.

For many millennia many different Mayan peoples inhabited the area around the city. In 1528 the Spanish took over area made the city the capital, which was later moved. Since this time there has been on going tension between the Spanish population and the Mayan population. Most recently this exploded in the Zapatista conflict, when the Zapatista Army of National Liberation actually took over the city in January 1994. The conflict has settled down and the city is safe to visit, even though the Zapatistas are present in the markets and other parts of town.

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Sights and Activities

Sunset church

Sunset church

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  • Palenque Ruin is an ancient Mayan city located only a 30-minute drive away from town.
  • Mayan Culture is strong and thriving in the city.
  • Santo Domingo Church is the main church in the city and a must see.
  • San Cristobal Church
  • Santa Anita Holy site is located to the west on Monte Huitepec.
  • Agua Azul is an amazing waterfall located nearby.

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Events and Festivals

Day of the Dead

Although the Day of the Dead is also celebrated in many Latin American countries except Mexico (and also in parts of Europe, Asia and Africa), the Day of the Dead (Spanish: Día de los Muertos) is most intensily celebrated in Mexciowhere where it is equal to a National Holiday. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. The celebration takes place on November 1st and 2nd, in connection with the Catholic holidays of All Saints' Day (November 1) and All Souls' Day (November 2). Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed and visiting graves with these as gifts. Although it is about the Dead, it is also a celebration where eating and partying both are common as well.

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Weather

Because of its altitude it rarely gets really warm in San Cristobal de las Casas. The warmest time is during the summer months from May to September. From November to February nights can get pretty cold, so bring warm clothes.

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Getting There

By Plane

Tuxtla Gutiérrez is the nearest airport with regular passenger flights.

By Bus

For Guatemala, most agencies offer daily van service to Quetzaltenango (eight hours), Panajachel (10 hours), Antigua (12 hours) and Flores (via Palenque).

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Sleep

In recent years hostels, B & B's, hotels and resorts have seemed to explode across San Cristobal. It is possible to find any kind of accommodation for any kind of budget in this town now. Remember that many places can fill up during the high season so it might be wise to book in advance. Some of the more budget places can get cold in the winter because of the lack of heating.

Budget

  • Posada Ganesha is a chill yoga theme hostel located near the city centre. The central courtyard is decorated with Hindu and Mexican fusion art and the common areas around the back courtyard are very nice. Dorms are 100 pesos per bed and private rooms range from 200 pesos to 400 pesos depending on the number of beds. This is a great place and relax while enjoying San Cristobal. The friendly staff also sell tours to nearby areas. Hot water is 24 hours but has to be requested. The hostel is located at calle 28 de Agosto #23, phone: 678-02-12.
  • Posada Mexico is an IH hostel located around a central courtyard. It has a good view and has dorms starting at 70 pesos a night. During the evenings this place can get a little wild. Internet and breakfast is included in the rent. Posada Mexico is located at Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez #12, phone: 678-00-14.
PropertyAddressTypePopularity
B&B Le Gite Del SolFrancisco I. Madero 82 esq. con Vicente GerreroGUESTHOUSE82
Casa JardinC/Diego de Mazariegos n 80 (esquina con C/Melchor Ocampo) Col. Centro HistóricoHostel-
Hotel Dulce LunaAv. Benito Juarez Barrio de Santa Luci�aHOTEL-
Posada GaneshaCalle 28 de agosto Av 5de mayo #4Hostel86
Posada MexicoC/ Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez Centro Histórico ChiapasHostel-
Posada Mi CasaCalle Ejercito Nacional 14HOSTEL84
Rossco Backpackers HostelReal de Mexicanos # 16Hostel89
Posada del AbuelitoCalle Tapachula #18 Barrio del CerrilloHOSTEL90
El HostalitoMaria Adelina Flores 24 Barrio Guadalupe CentroHostel85
Iguana HostelCalle Chiapa de Corzo 16 Barrio el CerrilloHostel90
Hotel Posada MexicaFLAVIO A. PANIAGUA 28Hotel-
Posada SancrisTapachula #14 El CerrilloGuesthouse-
Posada Juvenil Youth HostelBenito Juarez 2Hostel-
Hostal Tata IntiDiego Dugelay 4 Barrio de Guadalupe.HOSTEL83
Hostal AkumalAv. 16 de Septiembre #33 Barrio de Mexicanos, entre Guatemala y Venezuela..HOSTEL89
Hostel Las PalomasGuadalupe Victoria 47 Barrio la MercedHostel-
Coletos HostelDiego Dugelay 11Hostel-
Terraza SuitesEjercito Nacional 1 Col. Barrio del CerrilloAPARTMENT-
Hotel JovelCalle Flavio A. Paniagua No. 27, Col. CentroHotel-
Posada Leon de JovelCalle Francisco Leon, No.35 Santa LuciaHostel86
Hotel Hostal San CristobalFrancisco I. Madero No. 94 Barrio de GuadalupeHotel-
Hostel Casa MaderoFrancisco I Madero Number 9 Colonia CentroHostel-
Hostal La Casa de PacoDiego de Mazariegos #80HOSTEL-
Hostal los CamellosCalle real de Guadalupe nº110HOSTEL-
Hotel Villas EsperanzaCarretera Internacional km.1171 barrio de san diegoHOTEL-
Hotel Plaza MolinaProl Insurgentes No 109 Col los pinosHOTEL-
Hotel Maria AngelinaCalzada Manuel Velasco Suarez No. 75 Col. San Ramon-La IslaHotel-
Hostal Posada ColonialCalle Real de Guadalupe 121-B Barrio de GuadalupeHostel83
Hostel ErniCalle 28 de Agosto 30-B Centro HistoricoHOSTEL-
Posada VictoriusGpe. Victoria N 82GUESTHOUSE-
Axkan Arte HotelÁlvaro Obregón No. 2 entre Insurgentes y M. Hida Barrio de Sta. LucíaHOTEL85
Puerta Vieja HostelCalle Diego de Mazariegos 23 Barrio de La MercedHOSTEL91
Casa CaracolCalle Argentina 19a Barrio de MexicanosHOSTEL-
CasaLunaCalle Bernal Diaz del Castillo #2 Barrio de la GuadalupeGuesthouse-
La Catrina Posada Bed & BreakfastFrancisco I. Madero 35 Esquina con Av. Josefa Ortiz de DominguezGUESTHOUSE-
La Terraza HostelSan Cristóbal de Las Casas Comitán #11 barrioHOSTEL-
Planet HostelCalle Cintalapa No.6, barrio del CerrilloHOSTEL-
El Hostalito - San CristobalMaria Adelina Flores 24HOSTEL-

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet cafe's are widely available and you generally can find one in the direct vicinity. Sometimes photocopy stores or photo processing stores will double as an internet cafe with a couple of computers. Look for signs reading "Acceso a Internet" or "Cibernautica" or "Cibercafe". Charges range from approx. US$1 an hour to US$3 an hour, depending on the location.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

Phone cards can be purchased anywhere and are needed for the majority of public phones. To call any number outside your region you have to dial 01 then followed by the area code. If calling a cellphone from a normal phone start with with 044. If calling cellphone to cellphone just dial the 10-digit number. To make an international call dial 00 followed by the country code then the local number. To call to Mexico, also dial 00 (most of the times) followed by the national code 52.

Post

The Mexican postal service is operated by Correos de México. The post service in Mexico is pretty good although not very cheap. It is reliable regarding the sending of postcards, but it takes at least a week to send it to other countries (US/Canada), more so if you send it to Europe or Australia. For packages it is better to use international services like FedEx or UPS. If you are sending a package internationally with the Mexican postal service, take the package OPEN to the post office, they may want to inspect it. Seal it up at the post office. Post offices typically open from 8:00am to 6:00pm Monday to Friday, and 9:00am to 1:00pm Saturday. You will find post offices (Oficina de Correos) is almost any town or city in Mexico. To buy stamps it is best to go to the post office, although you can also get them at stamp machines, located outside the post offices, at bus stations, airports and some commercial establishments.

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Quick Facts

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Coordinates
  • Latitude: 16.738578
  • Longitude: -92.633281

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This is version 13. Last edited at 1:59 on May 24, 13 by sleepBot. 4 articles link to this page.

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