Well, all is good in our little travel bubble. Sometimes I feel like Judith Chalmers (under forties or those who don’t live in the Uk will have no idea who that is!) telling you about one travel destination after another. No dramatic near death experiences or mechanical disasters to make for exciting reading I’m afraid.
But we did need, to find another route!
You know sometimes, something in the Lonely Planet sparks your interest and you really can’t explain what draws you to it especially when it’s a bit of a trek out of your way to get there. Sima de las Cotorras is a 140m deep by 160m wide sink hole, we’ve been to the Grand and Copper Canyons do we really want to see this little hole? It is home to a flock of small green parrots that have been forced out of other habitats due to deforestation and their numbers depleted due to hunting. A group of around 30 local people now manage the area as a conservation project and there is a small restaurant and washrooms so we were able to arrive late and camp there. As the sunrises which is a about 7am here the parrots get pretty vocal and start to fly up out of the hole. It was one of those things that you have to hear as much as see and pics don’t do it justice. We were pleased we stopped by as much as anything to meet a few of the people involved and make a donation. It really is a bit out of the way and was deserted apart from us and 2 others who arrived in the morning.
John invalidating the travel insurance having climbed over the DANGER STOP HERE sign!
We then headed east to the small town of Chiapa de Corzo, our 2 previous nights had been at places with toilet only facilities so showers were much needed. La Tradicion Pasada was perfect, only 250 pesos (about £10) a night and this is what we pay for camping in the more expensive areas.
A lovely spot for Juanita and our room was good too.
Local dog chill out zone.
We took a boat trip in the spectacular Canon del Sumidero. A boat of our own would have been nice but out of our price range so we shared with 18 very jolly Mexicans.
Very excited to see crocs. We must be in the minority who’ve managed to go on a crocodile safari in Queensland and not see any and an alligator safari in the Louisiana swamps and only see tiny ones that the boat skipper attracted by feeding them meat! These were definitely the real deal.
This one had a butterfly above each eye, looked like little horns.
We left the boat as the early afternoon temperature reached around 34c, our next stop was only 80km down the road but around 1900 metres higher so by the time we reached our destination of San Cristobal de las Casas the temperature was down to around 20c, we could have been at home! In fact the campsite we stayed on had a couple of houses for rent on the plot and we chatted to a Brit currently living there who is moving back to the UK after 14 years in Mexico. She commented that the time spent in San Cristobal was getting her ready for a Devon winter.
We have been surprised by how few non-Mexican tourists and travellers we have come across so far but that was all about to change in San Cristobal! It’s a pretty town with a cosmopolitan feel, international food, coffee shops, lovely things to buy and yoga classes. A dangerous place to be on a budget! We were only scheduled to stay for 2 nights and when I suggested 1 more night to John the answer was a definite no! Quite sensible really I could have got too comfortable. We spent our time there wandering and people watching. We did allow ourselves the luxury of pizza for dinner one night, they were really good and luckily big enough to do lunch the next day.
Loved the street art.
Quite a crowd gathered to listen to this group of musicians. They weren’t busking, no pot or hat to throw coins in they just seemed to be playing for pleasure.
The performance finished with a succession of huge bangs from the detonation of a line of gunpowder that stretched all the way down this street. Flipping loud and smoky!
The gorgeous cool oasis is called Na Bolom. It was the home of Gertrude and Frans Blom who were a photographer and archaeologist who lived here from the 1950’s. They worked to preserve the land and way of life of the Lacandones indigenous people. It is now a museum and contained some great photos and artwork.
Mobile knife sharpening.
Bye for nowx