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The state of Chiapas, Mexico, is filled with high mountains, many Mayan villages, jungles and Mayan ruins. One of my favorite places on the earth.
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San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
On the border of the state of Chiapas (Mexico) and Guatemala, there is a national park, Lagunas de Montebello. It contains numerous lakes and cenotes, mostly spring fed from waters deep in the mineral depths of the earth. Each body of water is...
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Av 20 de Noviembre 6-8, Zona Centro, 29200 San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
While my friend John Look went hunting for that elusive delicacy, rat soup, found in a small Mayan village near San Cristobal, I found the perfect edible rats right in town. At the only bakery on the Ecclesiastic Andador, 20 de Noviembre, you can...
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Tonina, Chis., Mexico
Mexico is the birthplace of chocolate, a food reserved for the gods and those closest to the gods. Cocoa beans were so valuable they were used as money. A day laborer got 100 beans for a day's work. A "Public Woman" got 20 for her services. And in...
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Santo Tomás, 29160 Chiapa de Corzo, Chis., Mexico
During the ParaChico's festival, in January 2012, I snapped this photo of a group of women headed down the street to join the parades of men dressed in brush hats, blue-eyed masks, and colorful capes. For an entire week, huge groups of people...
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Periférico Norte 4, Ojo de Agua, 29220 San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
One of the highlights of any trip to San Cristobal de las Casas is a visit to the Orquideas Moxviquil. Cisco Dietz, the owner, is a most knowledgeable person and is in love with rare plants. He designed and built the green house (pictured) for the...
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Cementerio, San Sebastián, Chamula, Chis., Mexico
A boy and his father shopping for onions at the market in San Juan Chamula during Santa Semana (Holy Week). He was trying hard to impress the cute vendor. Chamula is a must-see village, home to Tsotsil speaking descendants of the ancient Mayans of...
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Latin America
During the rituals of Santa Semana (Holy Week), smoke from thousands of burning candles and incense pours from the door and roof cracks of the church in San Juan Chamula. Inside the church there are wall-to-wall people, some drinking coke with pox...
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Latin America
Throughout Mayan country, there are interesting cemeteries. Mulitiple Mayan crosses on a grave indicate the number of years a person has been gone, and the colors indicate age. Babies get white crosses, young people blue, and older people green....
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Zona Centro, 29200 San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
These women, from the Village of Chamula, spend their days wandering the city selling rebosos and other woven goods. Often they are also carrying an infant and have very young children in tow. You can tell the women are from Chamula by the hairy...
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Latin America
Zinacantan, a few miles west of San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas, is home to many skilled hip loom weavers. They make huipils (shirts), table cloths, place mats, and blankets by weaving lengths of cloth and then sewing them together. Pascuala...
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Favio Abelardo Paniagua 54, Barrio de Guadalupe, 29230 San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
Taller Lenateros is a small workshop employing about twenty people full time. They make paper with new and recycled fibers, flowers and natural dyes, and even use recycled broken CDs embedded in paper for shiny book covers. They print blank books,...
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Latin America
Tonina is my favorite of the Mayan ruins. It is in a temperate zone, not wet and steamy like Palenque. It's the highest pyramid in all Mexico, but that is a result of topography. The people of that area used an existing mountain, one that...
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Chiapas, Mexico
Catch a boat tour from Chiapa de Corzo to see the Canyon del Sumidero. It is a spectacular ride through narrow canyons with cliff walls that rise as high as 1000 meters straight up. Along the edges you'll see crocodiles, buzzards and occasionally...
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Calle Mexicanidad de Chiapas s/n, Barrio San Miguel, San Jacinto, 29160 Chiapa de Corzo, Chis., Mexico
The town of Chiapa de Corzo is famous for the Parachicos Festival, the embarcation point for the magnificent Sumidero Canyon boat tours, and for the lacquer work of various artists. Facing the plaza is a school that teaches traditional art; making...
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The Chocolate Museum (Museo de Cacao) features displays of comals for roasting cocao beans, matates for grinding them, and many crude and sophisticated containers for serving hot chocolate. There are several types of beans, most of which are not...
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Panamá 2, Barrio de Mexicanos, 29240 San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
Living in a place for a while lets you experience the full range of what is available in the markets. In San Cristobal, just as the rainy season starts, all kinds of strange fruits from the hot low country become available. I saw some hairy fruits...
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San Nicolas 1, 29254 San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
As six months of living in San Cristobal drew to a close, I felt like a condemned prisoner deciding on a last meal. Dona Chayito's Restaurant had become my absolute favorite place for Cochinita Pibil. Senora Chayito usually serves it with rice,...
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Agua Azul, Chis., Mexico
Deep in the jungles of Chiapas turquoise rivers emerge from deep springs. Agua Azul is a series of cascades and pools found just off the road between Ocosingo and Palenque. Closer to Palenque, and equally accessible, is Misol Ha, a dramatic...