Day Ten - Canon del Sumidero, Parque Nacional
Tuxtla Gutierrez Travel Blog› entry 10 of 13 › view all entries
Today we took a bus out to the local National Park. It's main feature is a huge canyon which apparently has some noteworthy history. As best I can tell, a number of locals, if not an entire city, jumped off the cliffs when the Spaniards invaded. That wasn't the last time though. Just last year an Australian base jumper made the leap and his parachute failed to open. The whole area has become increasingly used for extreme sports. There is an annual swim for a decent length of the river. The catch is that the river is infested with crocodiles, so the sport is to make the swim without getting chomped on. Apparently that's only happened a couple times, so the crocs are fairly well content with the fish they find I guess.
There were several lookout areas and where we stopped to take pictures.
Leaving the park we drove to another section of Tuxtla to see a historical tree. This tree was planted in 1592. It sits in the local town square, but was completely surrounded by a carnival which was enjoying a siesta waiting for the evening hours to arrive and bring with them carnival goers. Most of the electrical cabling for the event ran through the limbs of a nearby tree.
Rather than a bandstand, this town square had a brick fortress on one side. It seemed to be quite old, and was actually rather intriguing architecture. A fountain under the dome was not operating, but that didn't keep people from seeking it shade from the structure as the day's heat continued to rise.
As we wandered through the town market area, I made a brief side trip into a local church to see what I could. There I found some worshippers mid-prayer. It was a very peaceful sanctuary, with soft pan-pipe music floating through the rafters. It seemed Marimba would've been more appropriate for this region, but the pan-pipes were pleasant too.
Finding the rest of my group at the nearby river's edge, I finally found live Marimba players and got several pictures of them plying their talents on these quintessential instruments. We left there and meandered towards a restaurant, taking the longest most circuitous route possible, finally ending up only several blocks from our hotel, which we could've driven directly to saving some time. Oh well, none of us starved to death in the meanwhile.