Translated from my 2007 blog post:
The first city we slept in Mexico was San Cristobal de Las Casas, a cold colonial town. On the day we arrived, we entered a museum that explained a little of the history of the city, which was the capital of the state of Chiapas, went through a colonial period with the exploration of slaves and Mayan people who lived there on the past. Interesting to see the process of the Catechism of the Indians, including books with engravings that the priests used to teach the Catholicism to Indians. Even part of the name of the city, “Las Casas”, was taken from the surname of a missionary priest who fought for the human rights of the Indians. Las Casas even asked to leave this mission for not tolerating the abuses made by the colonizers to them. It was good to go to this museum and have an introduction to the Mayan culture.
Aaaaaaaaaah but I couldn’t stand the cold in the street, so we went to the hostel to be wrapped in a blanket. In the evening we went to have a beer (just to beat the cold) in a little bar called Revolucion. We had the beer with a mixture of lime with pepper… strangely weird!
Just realized that this weird beer was actually a michelada – 10 years later, I learned about cheladas and micheladas on my recent trip to Holbox.
The next day we went to a very interesting museum, the Maia Medicine Museum. Detail: on the way we ate a taco for 1 peso. That’s like 0.20 real.
Continuing about the Museum, this one had some representations in wax dolls demonstrating some Mayan customs, like the birth (photo), the process of making the healing candles, the form of prayer. In the end, you visit a garden where they preserve the plants used by the Incas in medicine. I loved it… the Mayans had a very advanced culture, too bad they had no firearms to defend themselves against the Spanish invasion.