5. Agua Azul & Palenque Ruins: Full-Day Tour from San Cristobal
Your full-day tour leaves San Cristobal de las Casas for the 90-minute transfer to Agua Azul. When you reach this series of glittering cascades you’ll have free time to immerse yourself in the pools, and later you’ll see Misol Ha, the highest waterfall in Mexico.
In the Sierra Madre de Chiapas Mountains you’ll marvel at Agua Azul, a series of cascades and shallow pools of limestone-rich water. You can follow the movement of the water down a series of natural dams to the point where it ends the clear, waist-deep Shumulhá River.
During April and May, the dry months, the water is a shimmering blue due the high amount of limestone present. In the rainy season the color is diluted because of the increased volume of water. These beautiful cascades continue on for miles across lush valleys and canyons.
The Mayan archaeological site at Palenque is your next stop on the tour. Palenque was a Mayan city-state that flourished during the 7th century. The ruins that have been unearthed date as far back as 226 B.C, with the most recent dating to the fall of Palenque, which occurred around 1123 A.D.
Palenque is a medium-sized site, much smaller than some of the major Mayan sites, but it contains some of the finest Mayan architecture, sculpture, and bas-relief carvings found to date.