“Two hidden gems of Chiapas, El Aguacero waterfall and Sima de Cotorras sinkhole, promise thrilling experiences just a 2-hour journey from San Cristobal. El Aguacero, a magnificent waterfall set within the Rio La Venta canyon, is nestled within the El Ocote Biosphere Reserve. Reachable through a pathway meandering down the canyon, flanked by semi-deciduous forest, the beauty of this less explored destination is unparalleled. You might even encounter wildlife like coatis, Neotropical river otters, badgers, and ospreys. Take a refreshing swim in the clear river water or relax on petite sandy beaches, but remember to conserve energy for the 700-step ascent back to the canyon’s top!

Moving onto Sima de Cotorras, a sinkhole with a forest ecosystem untouched by human influence. This expansive natural phenomenon, 160m wide and 140m deep, is home to thousands of green parakeets, who’ve made it their habitat owing to the minimal presence of predators. Witness the theatrical exodus of parakeets at dawn, around 5:30–6 am, when they spiral out of the hole in a flurry of green, their squawks echoing throughout the sinkhole. March to October is the best time to visit, as parakeet numbers peak during these months. For an immersive experience, rustic cabins are available for overnight stays, ensuring you don’t miss this breathtaking spectacle. Sima de Cotorras also holds historical significance with its ancient wall paintings, estimated to be 5,000 to 10,000 years old. These 48 paintings, presumably created by the Zoque Indian group’s ancestors, are located halfway down the cliff and remain an intriguing mystery—how did they descend 70 metres of sheer cliff to create these captivating figures?”