Chiapas travel

Mexico is always a good idea!
san cristobal de las casassumidero canyon

Chiapas, Mexico Travel

🗣 Mexico Language

Spanish — Though you’ll hear indigenous languages in some places

💰 Mexico Currency

Mexican Peso — Exchange rates vary, but hover around $18 pesos to $1USD

📍 Top Things to Do in Chiapas

San Cristoabal de las Casas, Sumidero Canyon, Palenque, Montebello

📍 Chiapas Off the Beaten Path

Chiapa de Corzo, Tapachula, San Juan Chamula, Comitan de Dominguez

Chiapas travel

Chiapas is located in Southern Mexico, just east of Oaxaca. Those continuing on to Central America from Mexico often have Chiapas as a last stop because you can do a land crossing into Guatemala from here.

Located way up in the mountains in Chiapas state, you’ll find San Cristobal de las Casas. This pueblo magico (magic town) lives up to its magical name for culture lovers.

Two must see Chiapas pueblos magicos (magic towns) are Palenque, where you’ll find the Mayan Ruins of Palenque, and colorful Comitan de Dominguez. 

chiapas travel FAQ

Is Chiapas State safe for travel?

According to experts, you are statistically quite safe while visiting Mexico; but here is a rundown of Chiapas safety.

For the most part, Chiapas is safe for travelers, though the locals to this state have a history of clashes with the Mexican government. However, tensions have been quiet for over a decade, and Chiapas is a very popular place for backpackers and those looking to get a real glimpse of Mexican culture.

If you stick to the most visited places in Chiapas — San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapa de Corzo, Palenque, Tuxtla Guitierrez/Sumidero Canyon — you should be very safe while traveling.

As with traveling anywhere, do follow these General Travel Safety Tips and pack these safety items for additional peace of mind.

Check out these podcast episodes with solo female travel tips, and tips on how to stay safe during Mexico solo travel.

• Ep. 34 | Planning your first Mexico solo trip


Is Mexico safe for solo female travel?

As this question doesn’t have a yes/no answer (I wish it did!), I do my best to answer it in depth in this blog, Safe Travel in Mexico: 20 Tips for Solo Female Travelers. However, for the most part, Mexico is actually statistically quite safe for travelers.

Mexico is a big country, and it has plenty of amazing solo female travel destinations — from the beautiful beaches of the Yucatan Peninsula and culturally-rich Southern Mexico, to the charming colonial cities in Central Mexico and laid-back Baja California — there’s a perfect place for every solo traveler in Mexico.

Top 20 Solo Female Travel Destinations: Head to this article to discover the 20 best places for solo travel in Mexico, recommended by solo female travelers who have actually visited them.

🎧 Click the links below to listen to podcast episodes with solo female travel tips.


What's the best time to visit Chiapas?

Weather-wise, northern and central Chiapas temperatures hover around 68°F all year long, though the coast sees higher temperatures.

As most will visit San Cristobal de las Casas, Tuxtla Gutierrez and Palenque, the best time to visit this part of Chiapas is from November-May during the dry season.

This part of the state, located in the mountains and valleys of the Central Highlands, is cooler and colder than many associate with Mexico weather, so take a moment to look over some weather reports before packing!

🧳 Head to this article to download your FREE Printable packing list for Mexico travel, and get a complete Mexico packing guide — so you know what to pack for Mexico City, and what NOT to take to Mexico.

How do I travel to Chiapas?

Most will fly into Tuxtla Gutierrez International Airport (code: TGZ), located in Chiapas’ capital city, Tuxtla Gutierrez, about one hour from San Cristobal de las Casas.

From there, you can catch a taxi, colectivo (small, shared van) or rental car to your accommodation.

*Note: There is no Uber in Chiapas state.

There is also a smaller airport, Palenque International Airport (code: PQM), for those planning to stay in Palenque near the famous Palenque Mayan Ruins.


Is it safe to rent a car and drive in Mexico?

As the country is quite large, road trips are a great way to see a lot in a little time.

To answer the question, Is it safe to drive in MexicoYES, it’s considered safe to rent a car and drive in Mexico, though do avoid driving at night.

Beyond that, another caveat to safety is that you’ll obviously be driving in a foreign country, and won’t be familiar with local road customs and driving laws. Head to this article for 12 Useful Mexico Driving Tips to get a better understanding of driving in Mexico.

🚙💨 Looking to rent a car? Discover Cars works with several agencies in Mexico to get you the best price.


Do I need a visa to visit Mexico?

No — U.S. passport holders do not need a visa to travel to Mexico. This is just one of the 5 Reasons Mexico is the Perfect Travel Destination for U.S. visitors.

When you go through Immigration at the airport, cruise port or land border, you’ll receive your FMM 180-Day (6 month) Tourist Card at no charge. Keep in mind that though it’s called a “card,” it’s actually just a small piece of paper.

Be sure to keep track of your FMM, as you’ll have to give it back to an Immigration officer when you’re leaving the country. If you lose your FMM, there is a $600 peso ($30USD) cost to replace it, and some paperwork you’ll need to fill out at the airport before you can leave the country.

In short: Don’t lose your FMM!

Do I need to speak Spanish to visit Mexico?

As a general rule, you’ll want to know at least a few words of Spanish when visiting anywhere in Mexico. This is both a sign of respect, and will also help you have a better trip.

If you’re wondering what constitutes “basic Spanish,” check out the infographic below — you’ll be surprised at how much you know already!

If you stick to the more touristic places where you’re headed, you should be fine with very basic Spanish. If you want to venture off the beaten path, be advised most people in the pueblos (small towns) speak little to no English.

🗣 Pro Tip: Download the Spanish Words & Phrases list below and save it on your phone as an image. This way, you have access to these most common words even if you’re off-WiFi.


List of useful spanish words and phrases

Chiapas & Southern Mexico Blogs

Mexico Hidden Gems: The 10 You Need to Know About

Mexico hidden gems & off the beaten path destinations on your travel radar? You’re in the right place, because those are my speciality!

Hridaya Yoga Mexico: Everything You Need to Know for Your Retreat

Considering a Hridaya Yoga Mexico silent meditation retreat? You’ve come to the right place for info — because I did one in Mazunte, Mexico.

Traveling to Oaxaca: Here’s Everything You Need to Know

Traveling to Oaxaca, Mexico?! Find out everything you need to know about a trip to Oaxaca City & the beaches on the coast of Oaxaca.

Oaxaca Day of the Dead 2021: Travel Planning Guide

Oaxaca Day of the Dead on your bucket list? Cross it off this year with insider travel tips from someone who’s been to Dia de los Muertos.

Mexico Solo Travel: 20 Amazing Destinations for Female Travelers

Need advice on solo travel Mexico destinations? All 20 places featured here come recommended by female solo travelers who have actually been!

Mexico Travel Podcast

Rated ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ on Apple Podcasts

Top rated Mexico Podcast on Feedspot

Dream To Destination

A solo travel podcast, a Mexico travel podcast… and a podcast about solo travel in Mexico.

Listen to more episodes on your favorite podcast provider.


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