So I’m down to the last few days in Mexico – boohoo- and I’m spending them in San Cristobal, essentially a mountain town with picturesque views, beautiful churches, cobbled streets and good food. Oh. And lots of shopping.
There is a distinct change in temperature – we went from shorts and shirts to fog and freezing cold!!! And I’m not exaggerating. It was really horribly chilly. Bring back the sun I say!!!
Where am I staying?
The hotel is called Parador Margarita, and one of the best ones of the entire trip. Stunning grounds, and the rooms were something else. Beautifully furnished, very rustic and tasteful, my kind of a room.
Location was also brilliant, 5 minute walk to Real De Guadalupe, and about a 10 minute walk to the main square. Don’t think twice about staying here.
- Grubbiness factor = non existent.
- Bed = 9/10. Comfy bed, comfy pillows and since it was so cold in this part of Mexico, comfy duvets and blankets – lovely lovely lovely.
- Shower = 10/10. Super hot shower, amazing pressure, I was having two showers a day. Loved it.
What did I eat?
Our first stop for lunch was at Agua Azul, the beautiful blue waterfalls where there were about 100 stalls all serving the same thing – empanadas, 5 for 20 pesos. So I chose fillings of frijoles and papas (you could have had queso, carne or pollo too) – freshly made to order.
More filling than tasty (how can deep fried food be so bland? Well. It can), they were just ok and served the purpose they were meant for – to fill my belly. What I enjoyed most was the cabbage and carrot salad, doused in lime. Could have had just that for lunch!
Once in San Cristobal, I noticed that it was another hippy town, which meant lots of veggie options – I would eat well here. Yay!
So I didn’t really have breakfast while I was there, only super amazing decent coffee from the cafe opposite the hotel – only 12 pesos! Muy delicioso!
Lunch one day was at Tonantzin, a restaurant on Real de Guadalupe specialising in veggie and vegan food. As it was still very chilly – about 12 degrees, I went for a soy milk hot chocolate – with real Mayan cacao. Exactly what I needed.
It was really warming and the chocolate really came through.
For mains I went for a vegan tamale. I was quite excited as all the tamales I have come across so far have been meat filled.
This one was stuffed with carrots, peppers, peanuts, raisins, spinach. It may have not been traditional, but dang, it was good.
Doused with that fresh tomato sauce and habanero salsa, it was the perfect meal for a cold day. Full of texture, flavour and substance. I’d eat it again. And again.
Lunch the next day was at Kinoko, more like a hipster cafe with two, tiny 4 seater cinemas that played hard hitting/meaningful movies. All in Spanish, so we didn’t watch any.
I LOVED this place. The decor of this place was great, and so was the menu. Lots and lots of veggie options. Oh, and the views from the restaurant were beautiful too.
To drink, mainly for the name and my love for all things Hayao Miyazaki, I went for the Princesca Mononoke – with strawberries, ginger and sparkling water. Good decision!! It was Perfect. Delicious. Refreshing. And gigante.
I went for a salad crammed with lettuce, beetroot, carrots, olives, avocado and peppers. Oh, and a side of guac. As expected.
Dinners? First night was at TierrADentro, a restaurant supporting the Zapatista movement.
We were all FREEZING cold, so what better drink to have than a mescal hot chocolate?
Ho ho ho. This blew my socks off. Potent, with a strong hit of both chocolate and mescal, believe you me, I wasn’t complaining about the cold any more. Won’t ever order it again though. Waaay too strong for me.
For my main meal? A pizza. MEH. Not a wise choice (I blame the cold), but the selection of salsas almost made up for it, along with the avocado, obvs.
What is brilliant about this place is that they have live music every evening. And tonight’s entertainment were 2 Italian guys – playing traditional folk music. Absolutely brilliant! The guy on the left played at least 7 instruments!
We went back there on the last night mainly to listen to the music – this time two girls from Argentina. I had a bowl of veggie soup with noodles – which was super tasty!
There was this sweet old woman trying to sell her wares. Now most restaurants allow vendors to come in and sell their stuff. Her style was unique. She would walk up to each table, not say a word, lay out all her stuffed animals and then look at you with puppy dog eyes.
It worked!!! I bought a lion which turned out to be be perfect present for the 5 month old baby at my homestay!
Dinner on another night with a few of the girls was at La casa del Pan, a lovely restaurant with artisan shops.
I ordered yes, guac – and look how it arrived! What a beautiful presentation! The best yet. And it tasted yummy!
I also went for a glass of home made kombucha. Refreshing but a bit too sweet for me.
For mains, a stunning stunning stunning meal. Black corn tortillas, stuffed with mushrooms, carrots, onions in this wonderful sauce.
Look inside. Pimped with lime and pico di gallo, it was an excellent dish.
So filling – I could only finish 2 of the tacos. As for snacks? More of that mango doused in lime and chilli. I also tried a cold chocolate from Cacao Nativa (there were about 5 of them in the place). I went for an 80% chocolate (you could choose which chocolate you want – try before you buy).
Yummy. Just how I like it – not too sweet, slightly bitter and a super depth of flavour. I even bought a bag of cocoa beans to take back with me.
What did I do?
So calming and relaxing, I spent 1/2 hour just sitting on a rock taking it all in. Next stop – Agua Azul, and you can see why it is callled that.
Perfect backdrop for your sweet sixteen pics, eh?
When I got to San Cristobal, I wanted to do nothing. This was the chill time of the holiday. I decided I didn’t want any day long activities and decided to spend 2 days walking around, visiting the markets, taking in the views and visiting as many churches as I could. Very worth it.
We did visit the jade museum, which I would recommend. And only 30 pesos fee! Didn’t know there were so many kinds of jade. I love the Lila – was instantly drawn to it.
I enjoyed my time here. San Cristobal is an expressive town – from the people to the graffiti to the streets. Definitely worth spending a few days here to relax.