Posada Del Abuelito: Daily room service, twin bed with private bathroom cost £11 p/night and includes full breakfast
The town itself is gorgeous with painted houses, paved streets, markets and shopping streets. We were so entranced with the mercado and fresh fruit and vegetables we ended up cooking dinner both nights. Fresh tortillas, frijoles, guacamole, fresh vegetables from the market, queso and ground up pepitas. It was fun sitting around the table discussing the days adventures with other travellers.
Main Mercado is Mercado municipal Jose Castillo Tielemans -the food one located north of the city. Enjoy getting lost and eating at one of the amazing food stands inside the market or the tiny taco stand at the back of the market. They were so surprised Greg ordered two plates of tacos! The pork, white and dark meat is cooked on the same grill but separated into two piles and spiced. Fresh tortillas laid out. Meat heaped on and salsas (hot ones) on a tray and you’re all set for an authentic antijohito.
It was fantastic to see the house known as NA BOLOM, home of archeologist Frans Blom and his wife, Gertrude Duby Blom, the documentary photographer, journalist, environmental pioneer, and jungle adventurer. They were an amazing couple who moved to San Cristobel in the 1950's purchasing an old monastery to continue researching and studying the Lacondonda Maya. The only Mayan people to never be conquered by the Spanish.
The house today serves as a museum, hotel, research centre dedicated to preserving the Lacondonda people, the jungles of Chiapas and Mayan history.
We did one big day trip which is the BEST thing to do in San Cristobel - Day trip to San Juan Chamula & Zinacantan. Our hostel organised it and there are english and spanish speaking tours every day. One of the best things we did in our entire trip! (Its on the next post).
Wandering back to the hostel we ate all our dulces and then walked up to Our Lady of Guadeloupe Church to watch sunset - which was annoyingly obscured by trees. We ended up wandering through the back streets of the city and onto a ring round that surrounds San Cristobel. We found out it is also known as the "road of misery" by a couple of American ex-pats living here - the nice houses indicated this neighbourhood is where various NGOs and expats live. They told us of the Chamula families who were kicked out of their village for converting to christian evangelicalism and end up living in squalor along "Misery Road". Really sad stuff.
Wandering through the streets we saw some amazing graffitti in this town. To me this shows the towns independent spirit - many people have written about how the Zaptista movement started in this town and the graffiti seems to continue the anarchic spirit of the people. Although my favourite is the Space Mayan graffiti! Check it out!
Afterwards we headed back to the hostel and sat in front of the fire discussing politics, things to see and places to go - a lovely end to the evening!
Highly recommended Accommodation: Posada del Abuelito
Best restaurant for atmosphere: Na Bolom (sit for dinner in the dining room).
Best hot chocolate/ moka : Cacao Nativo - not cheap but amazing chocolate!!