I visited San Cristobal De Las Casas for the first time in 2002.
I loved the place. Its colourful colonial buildings and cobblestones street made this mountain town look almost magical.
Last year I went back with Dom. I didn’t find the place changed very much. Maybe there were more tourists, but the town kept its unique character.
We had fun walking up and down the quaint streets, we enjoyed a bit of people watching while seating sipping a coffee or wine, we went horse riding and drank more coffee.
San Cristobal is also the perfect spot to base yourself while exploring Chiapas. It is especially recommended if you are planning a few days trekking through the Selva Lacandona.
5 Things to do in and around San Cristobal
Have a coffee in one (or more) of the many coffee shops: Chiapas is renowned for its excellent coffee and San Cristobal is full of small quaint coffee shops where you can spend hours sipping delicious coffee and taking in the aromatic smell.
Our favourite coffee shop was Libre Cafe, just around the corner from our hostel. The coffee was excellent and they had amazing brownies as well. The atmosphere was super chilled and hippy and they played great tunes in the background.
Walk around: San Cristobal has countless pedestrian friendly street. Stroll along and discover the streets sided with local shops, bars and restaurant. Take in all the colourful buildings and equally colourful people.
End your day with a glass of wine or any other drink of your choice at one of the bars. Many bars offer a special of one beer and one mezcal.
Visit the museums: If you are a fan of museums, San Cristobal offers a few dedicated to the local arts and culture. Centro de Textiles de Mundo Maya is definitely worth a visit if you wish to find out about the textile production of Chiapas.
Visit the Cathedral: You can take a tour of the Cathedral in the main square. San Cristobal is surrounded by churches. If you fancy a hike, you can take a stroll to the top of one (or more) of the hills surrounding San Cristobal. There is a church at the top of each of them, plus some amazing views of San Cristobal.
Horseback riding: You can organize a half day trip to San Juan Chamula, a small Mayan Village, by horseback riding. The village is definitely worth a visit and the tour is very good value for money.
Where to stay
There are plenty hostels, guest houses and hotels in San Cristobal.
We stayed at 13 Cielos Hostel. The hostel is conveniently located right in the middle of town. It is like a little home away from home, the owner Fernando is very friendly and super accommodating.
There is also a fully equipped kitchen if you want to save money on meals.