Tuxla Gutiérrez (Tuxla) is the capital of the southern Mexican state of Chiapas.
A short drive from Tuxla is Chiapa de Corzo, a Pueblo Magico town and the starting point for a river cruise through Cañon del Sumidero! The canyon is a most impressive natural attraction, formed some 40 million years ago by a geological fault.
It’s located within the 50,000-acre national park, Parque Naćional Cañon del Sumidero. Whether you’re staying in Tuxla or the popular tourist town of San Cristóbal de Las Casas, there’s no shortage of organised tours you can do to see it.
For us, however, our travel style is if we can drive ourselves to a destination, saving us time and pesos, we do it! And it was just a simple 20-minute drive from Tuxla for us to arrive in Chiapa de Corzo.
Parking on a side street close to the centro area, we didn’t have to look hard to find the tour boats. Pueblo Magico Tourism employees are wandering around the streets everywhere, ready to point you in the right direction.
Taking ourselves to Chiapa de Corso saved us a lot of pesos. It was only 250 pesos for a 2-hour boat ride up the Grijalva River to observe the imposing cliffs of this natural wonder.
The only catch is, the boat needs to be full (around 15 people) before they set off. Fortunately for us, on the day we visited, it took just 5 minutes to get on a full boat.
Life jackets are provided and wearing one is non-negotiable, so I hope orange is your colour!
I also suggest bringing sun cream, as the boats do not offer covers for shade and rightly so. You will want your view of the highest point to be uninterrupted. At the deepest part of the gorge, the rock walls rise a staggering 1000 metres!
En route through the canyon, there are multiple stops to view and photograph crocodiles, spider monkeys, bird life and the natural formations of the canyon, such as the Christmas Tree (Arbol De Navidad).
The Christmas Tree waterfall is an extraordinary formation of moss-covered green rocks formed on the side of the cliff face, with the appearance of the branches of a tree.
In addition, the tour operator will pull into a cave alcove which has a shrine to the Virgin De Guadalupe. Virgin De Guadalupe is very much a part of Mexican culture and a powerful symbol of the country’s Christianisation.
The unpleasant side of this shrine is the amount of plastic rubbish that gathers in this quiet spot on the river.
Don’t let the plastic deter you, though. It truly is a magnificent and unforgettable experience.
Bucket-list worthy! 😃
Edited by Jess Downes – http://www.linkedin.com/in/jess-downes