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Chiapas Mountain Biking

Chiapas Adventure

Example 9 Day Tour
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This active Chiapas trip in Mexico combines mountain biking, rafting, and hiking as you explore the Mundo Maya (Mayan World) and experience first-hand Chiapas' traditional cultures. This is an ideal Mexico tour for travelers interested in multisport activities who also want an authentic experience with visits to local villages, Maya ruins, and remote rainforest.
Palenque ruinsMishol Ha WaterfallTraditional masks of Chiapas line a wall.A view of the amazing Sumidero Canyon.A guide informs visitors about the beautiful Misol-Ha waterfall.Travelers climb to the top of the Tonina ruins.Maya ruinsWaterfall in ChiapasWitness the incredible ruins of Palenque.Architecture in ChiapasLagos de MontebelloAncient artwork in ChiapasMaya ruinsPalenqueVisit the Palenque ruins that was once a thriving Mayan city.PalenqueWaterfallsBehind the Misol-Ha waterfall lies an incredible cave.Sumidero CanyonChiapas Mountain Biking
Highlights
  • Take a cultural biking journey through the Chiapan countryside
  • Hike Montebello Lakes, a cluster of over 50 lakes ranging in size and color
  • Search for wildlife at Lacandona Rainforest, a protected area
  • Boat to Rio Lacantun for bird watching and wildlife viewing
Places Visited
  • Central America & Mexico
  • Mexico
  • Bonampak Maya Ruins
  • Chiapa de Corzo
  • Chiapas
  • Comitan
  • Lagos de Montebello
  • Las Guacamayas
  • Palenque
  • Reforma Agraria
  • San Cristobal de las Casas
  • San Juan Chamula
  • Tabasco
  • Tuxtla Gutierrez
  • Villahermosa
  • Yaxchitlan
  • Zinacantan
Activity Level: Moderate
Activities that provide a reasonable level of physical challenge and elevate the heart rate. Focused on more active pursuits including multisport tours. Travelers may be active 5-7 hours total each day. Recommended for travelers with active lifestyles.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Arrive Tuxtla Gutierrez | Sumidero Canyon

Upon arrival at Tuxtla Gutierrez airport, meet your guide and transfer to Chiapa de Corzo and Sumidero Canyon. After exploring the canyon, return to the dock and head to the picturesque town of San Cristobal de las Casas. Conclude the tour with a drop-off in San Cristóbal de las Casas, having experienced a boat trip down the Grijalva River through the lush Sumidero Canyon.

Day 2: Biking in Chiapas

Start your day with breakfast and set off on a cultural and biking adventure through the Chiapan countryside. Begin with a vehicle transfer to San Juan Chamula, where you'll explore the main church and indigenous cemetery. The biking journey to San Lorenzo Zinacantan spans approximately 10 km, with flat stretches, stony up-and-downhill slopes, and scenic pine forests. Take a moment at a beautiful overlook before descending into Zinacantan to learn about the history and traditions of the highland Maya. Visit traditional back-strap weavers, relish handmade tortillas, and share lunch with a Zinacantecan family. Don't miss the chance to sample local home-brewed Pox (Agua ardiente) before returning to San Cristobal de las Casas in the late afternoon. Enjoy some free time to explore the charming streets independently, and for dinner, choose from one of the local restaurants at your leisure.

Day 3: Hiking the Montebello Lakes

  • Hotel
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Dinner
Explore the stunning Montebello National Park, home to 59 lakes showcasing a mesmerizing array of colors and sizes. Visit 7 to 9 of these lakes, immersing yourself in the diverse local flora and fauna. Marvel at the water's hues, ranging from greens and blues to purples and blacks. Within the park lies the Chinkultic archaeological zone, featuring over 200 structures. Climb the Mirador for panoramic views that overlook the multitude of lakes in Montebello.

Day 4: Lacandona Rainforest | Las Guacamayas

Descend from the Chiapas highlands with a drive into the Lacandona Rainforest. Stop at the Las Nubes Waterfall on the Santo Domingo River, famous for its vibrant turquoise color, for a 1.5 hour hike in the area. After lunch at a local restaurant, continue for two hours to Las Guacamayas, an environmental education and ecotourism center and your home for the next two nights. This lodge focuses on the conservation of habitat for the macaw in this region. Relax in your cabanas with a private bathroom and hot water, and fall asleep to the sounds of the jungle as you prepare for the next day’s Chiapas adventure.

Lacandona Rainforest is a protected area with tremendous opportunities for birdwatching and wildlife viewing, including jaguars and eagles, both important symbols for the Maya. Tucans, red macaws, curassows, tucancillo collarejo, and cojolite (turkeys) are all found in this area, species sought by the Maya for their traditional headdresses.

Day 5: Lacandona Rainforest Boat Trip and Hikes

Enjoy a full day in Las Guacamayas with options to tailor the experience to your preferences. If relaxation is your goal, kick back in a hammock. Alternatively, choose from various included activities. Embark on a two-hour boat trip along the Rio Lacantun for birdwatching and wildlife viewing—maybe even catch a glimpse of a jaguar if luck is on your side. Or, opt for a hike to spot the reserve's vibrant macaws. The day is yours to design based on your interests and desires.

Day 6: Yaxchitlan Maya Ruins

Bid farewell to Las Guacamayas and depart to Yaxchitlan, a Maya complex known for its strategic (and scenic) location on a bend in the Usumacinta River. The site displays ornamental facades and stelae (or carved stone slabs) that depict Maya battles and ceremonial events. Due to the remoteness of this site, Yaxchitlan is less-visited than other Maya ruins of similar importance and size, giving you more quiet and freedom to explore Yaxchitlan with your local guide.

Day 7: Rafting the Lacanja River | Bonampak Maya Ruins

Hit the river with a half-day rafting trip on the Lacanja River. This scenic river cuts through lush rainforest and passes through small waterfalls and pools, giving a nice variation between meandering stretches and exciting drops. Most drops are 3-5 feet high with one at 8 feet and a Class II-III rating depending on the water level.

This afternoon visit Bonampak, a Maya site meaning “Painted Walls” in a Maya dialect. The site is famous for its vivid frescoes showing the consecration of the ruling elite’s heirs, depictions of battles, sacrifices, and ceremonies and displays some of the finest murals found in the pre-colonial Americas. Many murals remained unfinished due to the fall of the classic Maya civilization. In the evening, travel to Palenque and overnight.

Day 8: Palenque Maya Ruins | Mishol-Ha Waterfall

Palenque was an important power center during the height of Mayan civilization that dates back to 100 BC. It is still unclear what led to the important city state’s fall around 900 AD. Nestled deep in jungles at the foot of the Sierra Madre del Sur, Palenque’s setting is as memorable as the site is important for the light it sheds on Maya traditions, ritual, ceremony, and spirituality. A massive complex spread over 15 sq. km., only the central area has been excavated. Peruse the Templo de Las Inscripciones, a burial monument that is Palenque’s tallest building, and El Palacio, the residence of Palenque’s rulers built in stages from 400 AD until 900 AD and restored in 1955. The palace’s tower is believed to have been constructed so Maya royalty and priests could watch the falling sun during the winter solstice.

After Palenque, continue to the Mishol-Ha Waterfall that cascades 115 feet into a pool surrounded by lush, green vegetation. An optional path winds behind the main falls that acts as a curtain and leads into a cave. Be prepared to get wet, but it is a nice break from the tropical heat. Bring your swimsuit and take a swim in designated areas during low flows.

Day 9: Transfer to Villahermosa

  • 1 Breakfast
Transfer to Villahermosa (two hours) for a late morning or afternoon flight out of the airport to your next destination in Mexico or to return home.

Accommodations

Hotel Casa Mexicana

Experience a warm welcome at Hotel Casa Mexicana
Guest rooms open to the private courtyard or gardens
Lush tropical gardens add to the relaxation found at this hotel

Hotel Chan-Kah

Hotel Chan-Kah
Hotel Chan-Kah
Accommodations are provided in tropical cottages, some with private pools

Parador Museo Santa Maria

Parador Museo Santa Maria
Parador Museo Santa Maria
Parador Museo Santa Maria

Las Guacamayas

Las Guacamayas
Las Guacamayas
Las Guacamayas

Escudo Jaguar

Accommodations are provided in thatched roof cabanas
Cabanas are nestled in the surrounding foliage
Rooms are equipped with mosquito netting and private bath facilities

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$4,666 2-3 travelers

Notes

Select a Date
Included
  • 8 Breakfasts, 1 Dinner
  • 8 Nights Accommodations
  • 1 Day Locally Hosted Guide Service
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Park Entrance Fee
  • Gear Rental
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Airport Departure Tax

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
Chance for unpredictable weather but with fewer visitors.

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