Chiapas’ thickly wooded jungles, slew of mountains and valleys, and the iconic Sumidero Canyon, coupled together with its traditional cultures and indigenous roots, have kept Tuxtla Gutierrez’ look, feel and style very distinct from the rest of Mexico.
Although there are some cities, symbols and events here which reveal the area’s colonial heritage, the people here are still well connected with their indigenous roots and life in many parts of the state continues to be lived according to custom and ritual.
The Fiesta Grande de Enero is usually held for a week in mid-January, this is one of Chiapas, Mexico’s liveliest and most extraordinary festivals, including nightly dances involving crossdressing young men, known as Las Chunta. Women don the highly colorful, beautifully embroidered chiapaneca dress, and blond-wigged, mask-toting Parachicos (impersonating conquistadors) parade on a number of days. A canoe battle and fireworks extravaganza follow on the final evening.
The most prominent of these events, however, is the annual ‘Fair of Chiapas’ which takes place each year in Tuxtla, Mexico. It is one of the most visited events in the country, behind Texcoco and Aguascalientes. Year after year it offers traditional activities such as bullfighting shows, charreria, sports and cultural events, arts and crafts. As well as local farming, cattle and breeding exhibitions.