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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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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.
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.
Tuxtla Gutiérrez is the nearest airport with regular passenger flights.
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.
|B&B Le Gite Del Sol||Francisco I. Madero 82 esq. con Vicente Gerrero||GUESTHOUSE||85|
|Casa Jardin||C/Diego de Mazariegos n 80 (esquina con C/Melchor Ocampo) Col. Centro Histórico||Hostel||76|
|Hotel Dulce Luna||Av. Benito Juarez Barrio de Santa Luci�a||HOTEL||-|
|La Catrina Posada Bed & Breakfast||Francisco I. Madero 35 Esquina con Av. Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Posada Ganesha||Calle 28 de agosto Av 5de mayo #4||Hostel||88|
|Posada Mexico||C/ Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez Centro Histórico Chiapas||Hostel||86|
|Posada Mi Casa||Calle Ejercito Nacional 14||HOSTEL||82|
|Rossco Backpackers Hostel||Real de Mexicanos # 16||Hostel||88|
|Posada del Abuelito||Calle Tapachula #18 Barrio del Cerrillo||Guesthouse||90|
|El Hostalito||Maria Adelina Flores 24 Barrio Guadalupe Centro||Hostel||83|
|Iguana Hostel||Calle Chiapa de Corzo 16 Barrio el Cerrillo||Hostel||89|
|Hotel Posada Mexica||FLAVIO A. PANIAGUA 28||Hotel||81|
|Posada Sancris||Tapachula #14 El Cerrillo||Guesthouse||-|
|Posada Juvenil Youth Hostel||Benito Juarez 2||Hostel||-|
|Hostal Tata Inti||Diego Dugelay 4 Barrio de Guadalupe.||HOSTEL||81|
|Hostal Akumal||Av. 16 de Septiembre #33 Barrio de Mexicanos, entre Guatemala y Venezuela..||HOSTEL||91|
|Hostel Las Palomas||Guadalupe Victoria 47 Barrio la Merced||Hostel||85|
|Coletos Hostel||Diego Dugelay 11||Hostel||-|
|Terraza Suites||Ejercito Nacional 1 Col. Barrio del Cerrillo||APARTMENT||-|
|Hotel Jovel||Calle Flavio A. Paniagua No. 27, Col. Centro||Hotel||-|
|Posada Leon de Jovel||Calle Francisco Leon, No.35 Santa Lucia||Hostel||87|
|Hotel Hostal San Cristobal||Francisco I. Madero No. 94 Barrio de Guadalupe||Hotel||-|
|Hostel Casa Madero||Francisco I Madero Number 9 Colonia Centro||Hostel||-|
|Hostal La Casa de Paco||Diego de Mazariegos #80||HOSTEL||-|
|Hostal los Camellos||Calle real de Guadalupe nº110||HOSTEL||-|
|Hotel Villas Esperanza||Carretera Internacional km.1171 barrio de san diego||HOTEL||-|
|Hotel Plaza Molina||Prol Insurgentes No 109 Col los pinos||HOTEL||-|
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.
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.
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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