Palenque Area in a Day and a Half

JUL 12,2013 - JAN 13,2013 (-179 DAYS)

Mexico

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Cancún

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Transportation

Arriving to Palenque - We took a night bus, ADO-gl, from Cancun to Palenque. The bus leaves at 17:45. The drive is 13 hours and cost us 872 pesos. You can take a regular ADO bus for just 732 pesos but the bus is much less spacious and comfortable.

El Panchán, Palenque, Mexico

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Accommodations

We arrived to Palenque at 06:45 after sleeping the entire ride. We immediately took a cab to El Panchan. We arrived to the Margarita Hostel, and took a room with two single beds for 270 pesos per night (it was high season). We dropped off our bags and immediately left looking for a tour to Agua Azul and Misol Ha falls.

Sightseeing

The tour to Agua Azul and Misol Ha falls was from 9:00-16:00 and cost 130 pesos per person. In addition you have to pay a 30 peso entrance fee to Misol and 38 pesos for Agua Azul

Misol Ha falls - it's a very nice waterfall. They let you stay there for about 30-40 mins and that's completely enough. You take pictures at the falls, you walk up the stairs so you're right below the waterfall, it's nice. Pay attention - at the cave entrance they ask for another 10 pesos to get inside.

Agua Azul - very pretty place with many levels of waterfalls. The tour allocated three hours for this site and it's enough time (including lunch which you order on your own from one of the restaurants). Here you'll also get into the water. Notice that in one of the levels they require 27 pesos per person for "another pretty place to bathe in". It's pointless because along the way there are plenty other places to get into the water free of additional charge. 

Food

El Panchán itself is highly recommended! This place has a jungle, with a unique atmosphere. A recommended restaurant is Dom Mucho where you can eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It's classy restaurant with great prices. I recommend the "milanesa de ros" - schnitzel made with meat. Pay attention - in most of the town there's no internet, and in Dom Mucho you can buy for 25 pesos/hour. Expensive but worth it for skype, whatsapp, etc. 

Palenque, Mexico

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History

The next day we woke up, drank some coffee, ate some good pancakes at Dom Mucho, and went to visit the Palenque archaeological site. The arrival is by a shuttle from the El Panchan crossroad and should cost 10 pesos (if you arrive from Palenque it should be 20; we also paid 20 but it shouldn't be that way).

Entrance fee is 27 pesos for getting to the reservation and another 57 pesos for the ticket into the sight. 

This place is amazing. We did Chichen Itza a week before and were very disappointed, mainly because of the guides. So here we didn't take any guides. The ruins in the entrance are very impressive and you can climb them (unlike in Chichen Itza). But the peak of the day was the tour inside the jungle. You get into the jungle and see the Mayan remains in the nature, amazing rivers, wild landscape, and the whole time you hear the sounds of the monkeys. A bit stressful in the beginning but it's crazy!

To sum it up - don't miss this sight. 

San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico

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Transportation

At noon we left for San Cristóbal. The drive took us 5 hours. You can use ADO but their hours aren't comfortable (only early in the morning or late in the evening, in which you reach San Cristóbal in the middle of the night). We used a local company called AXA which has buses to San Cristobal at 13:30 and 17:00. 13:00 was great as we arrived at 18:30. Another option if you don't want to sleep in Palenque area, is to get to Palenque in the early morning, take the bus that leaves at 7:30 which gives you a tour at 3 locations  (archaeological site, Agua Azul and Misol Ha falls) and brings you directly to San Cristóbal. I don't recommend that because you will miss the El Panchán experience, and won't have enough time to get lost in the jungle. 

There's a tour to the remains and the falls leaving from San Cristóbal. Don't do it! The drive alone is 5 hours in each direction, so you're left for two hours to do all of the sights all together. Definitely not enough. 

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