A priceless pre-Hispanic heritage; spectacular natural landscapes and the traditional flavor of its cuisine are some of the experiences offered by Palenque. It is one of the most important and impressive archaeological sites in Mexico. It was discovered in the 18th century right in the middle of the jungle (it is part of the seven Mayan legacies in Chiapas, belonging to the Classic Period, in addition to Bonampak, Chinkultic, Rosario Izapa, Tenam Puente, Toniná and Yaxchilán).
The value, beauty and transcendence of its temples and palaces have earned it its denomination as a Patrimony of Humanity by the UNESCO. Likewise, it is (along with El Cañón del Sumidero and the Lagoons of Montebello) one of the three areas of the state decreed as a National Park. Of relevant importance: Palenque Site Museum, Palenque History Museum, Church of Santo Doming, Central Park, Plaza of Crafts (Plaza de Artesanías), House of Culture (Casa de Cultura), Parque de Feria; walk through the eco-archaeological path that crosses the Otolum creek; as well as seasonal fairs (International Mayan World Palenque Expo and the Book Fair-during Easter week-; Santo Domingo Fair, during August).
Rappel, zip line, kayaking, trekking, speleology, camping, canoe rides, canyon expeditions, hiking, and rafting in the nearby regions to this archaeological site. It is worth visiting the archaeological sites of Toniná, Bonampak and Yaxchilán; the Agua Azul and Misol Há Waterfalls; The Biosphere Reserve of Montes Azules and the Catazajá Lagoon. Astronomy that exemplifies the syncretism of the Pre-Hispanic and Spanish cultures (dishes with aromatic herbs, such as Hierba Santa and Chaya; tamales -chipilín, bola, cambray, mole and pictes-; tascalate and pozol –drinks based on corn and cacao – and the world famous Chiapas coffee).
Well-made diversity of handicrafts: lapidary (scale replicas of the archaeological sites and of pieces found in them); colorful textiles; amber jewelry, leather goods, carved stone and wood (masks); pottery and ceramics; lacquering and baskets.
TO STAY PALENQUE
• Quinta Chanabnal
Rafael (owner of this boutique hotel) is a lover of the Mayan culture and this is reflected in the pre-Hispanic design that frames the place, mixing comfort, nature and seven suites that resemble Mayan palaces. Unique stone pool. Area for temazcal and massages.
Carretera Palenque-Ruinas Km. 2.2.
Tel: (01-916) 345 5320.
TO EAT PALENQUE
• La Selva
International cuisine with Mexican specialties.
Probably the most famous place in Palenque; Mayan atmosphere inside a large palapa. Ideal for friends and families.
Fresh piguas (sweet water lobsters); Meat cuts.
Carretera Palenque-Ruinas Km.0.5.
Tel: (01-916) 345 0363.
International and regional cuisine.
Southeastern specialties in an atmosphere surrounded by nature and Mayan environment. Choose simple dishes. Ideal for families or groups of friends.
Shrimp brochettes; Palenque chicken.
Av. Independencia e Hidalgo S/N.
Tel: (01-916) 345 0042.