The state of Chiapas is on Mexico's southern border with Guatemala. In general the climate is tropical, hot and humid, with most travelers entering via the capital city of Tuxtla Gutiérrez. Not far from Tuxtla, the Sumidero Canyon plunges 3000 ft into the Grijalva River, but before you plunge in yourself, be warned that big river crocodiles will be sharing the murky water with you. Better to take one of the boats that ply the river to get an up close experience of the canyon.
Chiapas has much to offer the adventure traveler seeking the past and present.
The mysteries of the Mayan culture can be explored in the lush jungle with Palenque (a UNESCO World Heritage site) being the most well known in Chiapas. Here you can see an impressive ceremonial compound from the Classic Mayan Period, as well as the “Palace”, which is an excellent example of Mayan architecture, made up of several structures, underground rooms, and courtyards decorated with human figures, religious and chronological scenes. Arrive early if you can to beat the heat, and explore a bit on your own before the tour crowds start arriving.
Chiapas is one of the most bio diverse regions in Mexico and is also famous for excellent coffee. A short flight from Tuxla bring us to Tapachula to enter coffee country where La Finca Argovia is one of the regions most important coffee producers. Argovia also has a wonderful working farm/resort where you can explore the lush grounds, go for a “safe” swim, practice yoga or just enjoy the chef-prepared local cuisine. Being a coffee addict myself, I really enjoyed the opportunity to see firsthand the many stages that coffee goes through from red “fruit” to black coffee. Austin-Lehman’s wellness retreat to Argovia Finca allows you to do all of this, and more! It’s a great trip for those who want to relax in a safe and comfortable jungle environment, while learning about the connection of food with local culture in the Chiapas region.