Boutique Travel Experts

Highlights of Chiapas & Yucatan

The Chiapas-Yucatan Highlights is a private guided journey designed for solo travelers, couples, and friends seeking an active and culturally rich experience over 10 days. This tour takes you through the highlights of Chiapas and Yucatan, blending adventure with deep cultural immersion. Begin in the highland town of San Cristobal de Las Casas, renowned for its colonial charm and vibrant markets. Explore the dramatic landscapes of Sumidero Canyon, the ancient Mayan ruins of Tonina and Palenque, and the enchanting indigenous villages of San Juan Chamula and Zinacantán. Travel further to Yucatan, visiting the flamingo-filled lagoons of Celestún, the bustling city of Merida, and the iconic archaeological site of Chichen Itza. Enjoy breathtaking boat rides, serene walks through historical sites, and refreshing swims in natural cenotes. This tour is ideal for those looking to combine physical activities with cultural exploration, offering a unique blend of history, nature, and adventure. Accommodation is provided in charming boutique hotels, ensuring comfort and a touch of local flair throughout your journey. Join us on this unforgettable adventure to discover the natural and cultural treasures of Chiapas and Yucatan. Whether you’re traveling alone, with a partner, or with friends, this tour offers a perfect balance of excitement and discovery tailored to active travelers.

10 Days – From £3,770 per person

*equivalent in USD, EUR accepted

Itinerary: San Cristobal de Las Casas, Palenque, Merida, Celestun

  • Price is per person, based on two people sharing in a double/twin room
  • Mentioned hotels with breakfast 
  • All the excursions mentioned in the itinerary 
  • All transfers by car and boat on a private basis
  • All entrance & guiding fees
  • All mandatory local taxes
  • Visa, where applicable
  • International Flights (See Flights to Mexico)
  • Domestic Flights
  • Personal Expenses
  • Insurance
  • Tips & Gratuities
  • Meals not mentioned in the description

International flights are not included in the package price. We give you the freedom to book the flights yourself, use miles and choose your preferred airline, and if you are stuck we can help you find the right connections. Return flights to Tuxtla Gutiérrez (TGZ) start from £650 per person, depending on the connections and time of the year.

Send us a message on WhatsApp or email us at explore@boutiquetravelexperts.com to check availability, discuss your preferences and get a quote.

This is a sample itinerary and prices are correct at the time of writing. We can tailor the trip up to your plans and bookother  hotels. You can also combine this trip with other regions. For more Mexico travel inspiration check these itineraries.

The best months to visit Chiapas & Yucatan are from November to April. This period offers mild to warm weather and less rainfall, providing comfortable conditions for exploring cities, archaeological sites, and natural wonders. During these months, you can enjoy pleasant temperatures for boat rides through Sumidero Canyon, visits to ancient ruins, and strolls through colonial towns. Additionally, from December to February, you have the unique opportunity to see the vibrant pink flamingos in Celestún. Late April offers warmer conditions with fewer crowds, making it a great time for a more tranquil experience.

To avoid unpleasant weather surprises, we recommend to check our Mexico Weather Guide to plan your trip in the right season. Click on the month you want to travel in and see the tours which are best for each month of the year. 

Day 1 - Arrival in Chiapas

Arrive at Tuxtla Gutiérrez Airport, where our driver will greet you and take you to the historic town of San Cristobal de Las Casas. Nestled in the highlands, this town is renowned for its well-preserved colonial architecture and charming cobblestone streets. Check into your hotel, a luxurious retreat offering a full-service spa and tranquil ambiance. Spend your first evening exploring the town’s vibrant culture. Wander through the colorful streets, visit local markets, and perhaps relax with a coffee in one of the quaint cafes. Savor the rich flavors of Chiapas at one of San Cristobal’s acclaimed restaurants, where local chefs blend traditional ingredients with modern culinary techniques, offering dishes like tamales, mole, and locally sourced coffee. Overnight at Casa del Alma Hotel Boutique & Spa.

San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas

Day 2 - Sumidero & Chiapa de Corzo

Begin with a scenic boat ride through the awe-inspiring Sumidero Canyon. Towering cliffs, lush vegetation, and diverse wildlife create a breathtaking landscape. Carved over millions of years, the canyon is a natural wonder featuring stunning waterfalls and mysterious caves. As you glide through the winding river, keep an eye out for crocodiles basking on the banks and various bird species soaring above. After this exhilarating experience, visit the historic town of Chiapa de Corzo, located on the banks of the Grijalva River. Stroll through lively markets brimming with local crafts, admire the unique Mudejar-style “La Pila” fountain, and explore the charming colonial architecture. Enjoy a leisurely lunch at a riverside restaurant, tasting regional specialties like sopa de chipilín and cochinito al horno. Overnight at Casa del Alma Hotel Boutique & Spa.

Canyon Sumidero, Mexico

Day 3 - Indigenous Towns

Delve into the indigenous culture of San Juan Chamula and Zinacantán. In San Juan Chamula, engage with the local Tzotzil community and witness their unique blend of ancient traditions and Christian practices at the Church of San Juan Bautista. The vibrant spiritual life of the village, with its mix of rituals and ceremonies, is truly captivating. Next, explore Zinacantán, known for its intricate textile weaving. Visit a local family’s home to see firsthand how traditional garments are woven on backstrap looms, and participate in making tortillas or sampling the local “posh” drink, a traditional aguardiente. This immersive experience offers a deep understanding of the cultural heritage and craftsmanship of Chiapas’ highland villages. Return to San Cristobal for a free afternoon of exploration or relaxation, perhaps visiting more local shops or enjoying a peaceful evening in the town. Overnight at Casa del Alma Hotel Boutique & Spa.

Day 4 - Tonina & Palenque

After breakfast, set out from San Cristobal to the Maya site of Tonina, known as the Place of the Celestial Captives. This pre-Columbian archaeological site, renowned for its pyramids and terraces, offers a unique and serene exploration experience. Wander through its many temples and sculptures at your own pace, savoring the tranquility and the detailed carvings depicting ancient rituals and battles. With fewer tourists compared to other Mayan ruins, you might enjoy the site almost to yourself. After your visit, your comfortable transport will take you through scenic landscapes to your hotel in Palenque. Relax and unwind at Boutique Hotel Quinta Chanabnal, surrounded by lush gardens. Overnight at Boutique Hotel Quinta Chanabnal.

Day 5 - Palenque & Waterfalls

Enjoy a privately guided tour of the Palenque archaeological site, one of the most significant Maya civilization sites, originally named Lakamha (Great Waters). Over four hours, explore the site’s main buildings, including the Temple of the Skull, the Tomb of the Red Queen, the Temple of Inscriptions, and the Palace. Your expert guide will share fascinating stories and insights from the numerous inscriptions found here. Climb the temples for breathtaking views over the surrounding lush jungle, where the calls of howler monkeys echo through the trees. Later, visit the Misol-Há waterfall, a stunning 35-meter cascade that drops into a serene, round pool. Overnight at Boutique Hotel Quinta Chanabnal.

Agua Azul Cascadas, Chiapas

Day 6 - Bonampak & Yaxchilan

Begin early with a departure from your hotel in Palenque for a full-day excursion. First, visit the Bonampak archaeological zone, renowned for its well-preserved murals depicting vivid scenes of war, sacrifices, and celebrations, offering a glimpse into ancient Mayan life. Continue to Frontera Corozal, where you’ll embark on a boat ride along the Usumacinta River. As you journey, watch for spider monkeys, crocodiles, and a variety of tropical birds. The river offers a unique perspective, with the Peten Jungle on one side and the Lacandon Jungle on the other. Arrive at the Yaxchilan archaeological zone, an important Mayan city deep in the jungle, where Temple 33 stands as the main structure. Return to your hotel in Palenque in the late afternoon, reflecting on a day rich with historical and natural wonders. Overnight at Boutique Hotel Quinta Chanabnal.

Day 7 - Transfer to Merida

This morning, you’ll be driven privately to Villahermosa Airport for your flight to Merida, the largest city in Yucatan state. Known for its blend of Mayan and colonial heritage, Merida promises rich cultural experiences. Upon arrival, our driver will transfer you to your hotel, a stylish boutique hotel offering modern comforts in a historic setting. Spend the afternoon exploring the vibrant streets, perhaps visiting the local markets or relaxing at your place. Enjoy Merida’s charming blend of historical architecture and modern comforts. As evening falls, explore the lively plazas and savor Yucatecan cuisine at a nearby restaurant. Overnight at Cigno Hotel.

Merida in Yucatan, Mexico

Day 8 - Celestún & Merida

Start your day with a drive to Celestún, a paradise for nature enthusiasts. This coastal town is home to over 2,000 pink flamingos during winter and early spring. Enjoy a boat ride through the enchanting saltwater lagoon, observing diverse flora and fauna. Take a refreshing swim in the clear waters and marvel at the vibrant flamingos. Return to Merida in the afternoon to discover its historic city center. Visit the Zócalo, the majestic cathedral, and the Monument to the Homeland. Stroll down El Paseo de Montejo, lined with grand colonial buildings, and soak in the city’s rich history and contemporary charm. Overnight at Cigno Hotel.

Celestun pink flamingos, Mexico

Day 9 - Chichen Itza & Cenotes

Discover Chichen Itza, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World and Mexico’s most iconic archaeological site. Your expert guide will lead you through the site, exploring El Castillo, the Temple of the Warriors, the ball court, and the sacred cenote. Learn about Mayan cosmology, religious practices, and the dualism of life and death. Visit a nearby cenote afterward, where you can swim in the crystal-clear waters of these natural sinkholes, adding a refreshing and adventurous twist to your cultural exploration. Return to Merida in the evening, reflecting on a day rich in history and natural beauty. Overnight at Cigno Hotel.

Chichen Itza, Mexico

Day 10 - Departure

Spend your final morning with some last-minute exploration or shopping in Merida, depending on your flight schedule. Our driver will transfer you to Merida Airport for your departure. If you wish to extend your adventure, our travel designers can help plan your ongoing trip, whether it’s exploring the pristine beaches and vibrant marine life of the Caribbean or other incredible destinations in Mexico. Enjoy your onward journey and the memories of an unforgettable adventure. Safe travels!

Cigno Hotel, Mexico

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