Tuxtla Gutierrez and neighboring San Cristobal de las Casas are located in the state of Chiapas. This region, east of Oaxaca, is undoubtedly Mexico’s most stunning scenic area. Featuring mostly wild, rugged landscapes, and rich indigenous life and culture, Chiapas has kept its look, feel and style very distinct from the rest of Mexico.
Although there are other cities, symbols and events here which reveal the area’s colonial heritage, the people 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.
A few miles east of the city you can find the spectacular Sumidero Canyon. It is a deep natural canyon, and was created around the same time as the Grand Canyon in the American state of Arizona. Sumidero Canyon has vertical walls which reach as high as 3,300 feet (1,000 meters), with the river turning up to 90 degrees during the 8.1 mile (13 kilometer) length of the narrow passage.
A new Ecological Park recently opened inside the canyon, and the only way to get to the park is to take a boat there. The park offers a range of activity-based eco-attractions and adventure tours, including the opportunity to visit the wildlife sanctuary, see local flora and fauna, as well as a number of activities such as kayaking, abseiling, ziplining and more.
There are also a variety of caves open for guided exploration around Chiapas. And Chorreadero Waterfall is something truly special. Here you can take your caving up a notch by exploring a cave with a river running through it. Because of this unique attribute, you can cliff jump into pitch-black pools, rappel down both wet and dry cliffs, swim through an underground river, and slide down small (and not quite-so-small) waterfalls.
One of the things to keep in mind about hiking around Chiapas is that going with an experienced local guide is always the best choice. The rocky, bouldered terrain means you’ll frequently be scrambling over huge rocks and near cliffs, sometimes needing a rope to either pull yourself up or gently rappel down. The Aguacero Waterfall hike is a favorite among visitors. This fairly straightforward hike (which includes a section of 700 steps) offers incredible views and an enormous waterfall to finish.