In San Cristobal and its surroundings, Chiapas, Mexico

Hi friends! I’m in Oaxaca, Mexico, where I arrived after a few days in San Cristobal de las Casas, the lovely city in Chiapas known for having been occupied in 1994 by the Zapatista Army of Liberation national (EZLN).

The occupation took place on the same day of the catastrophic economic agreement NAFTA with the United States and Canada. An agreement that, soon after, brought even more misery for the poor and the indigenous in Mexico.
After several armed clashes with the Mexican army and some accords with the government (rarely respected by the latter), the EZLN announced the cessation of armed struggle except for strictly defensive reasons. They invited all revolutionary leftist movements of the world to unite in solidarity and to work together to resist neoliberalism, as declared in their last official statement, in June 2005, the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle.
Some municipalities in Chiapas are under their control.

San Cristobal is charming, with narrow cobbled streets, colorful houses, colonial churches, and indigenous women in colorful dresses carrying their children on the shoulder. All of Chiapas looks fantastic.

Now I am in Oaxaca, which I visited already fifteen years ago. I met a friend from my hometown (Benevento), Ketty, and her mate, Gianluca. But I will tell you about this in my next post.


A few more photos of Guatemala, in the Chichicas market, about 20 km north Lake Atitlan.


Mother and sons.




On the steps of the church.




Market colors.


The main square in Cristobal de las Casas, Chapas, Mexico. The city is situated at 2200 meters altitude and is surrounded by mountains.


Woman bringing her son on the back.




Sometimes people in Chiapas don’t like to be photographed, like this sprightly old lady that got upset.


A street of San Cristobal.


Chickens at the market.


A woman at the market.


Gentlemen dressed in a very particular way in Tenejapa, one of the villages around San Cristobal.


I went there with two Italian guys, and, shortly after, an odd guy insisted on being our guide. But he couldn’t speak English, nor Italian. Actually, not even Spanish (as also us, by the way). Here is asking for a generous tip. We still haven’t understood for what.


People in Tenejapa.




Little boys.




Sister and brother.


Back in San Cristobal, a little girl at the market.




On the streets, cute little girls sell souvenirs. From this one, I bought a Subcomandante Marcos pen-shaped.


Little girl selling zebras.


Other little girls.


Next time I’ll put some photos of San Juan Chamula, a village near San Cristobal, and Oaxaca.

Hasta luego! :-)


I answer the comment.
Hi Kaliopi! My camera is Canon 450d. At the end is nothing of special, it is not even considered semi-pro, but just amateur, and now is 4 years old.
I use 2 lens: Canon 28-135 and Sigma 10-20.
I’m shooting in RAW that gives more flexibility in the post-processing. And of course I use a little of Photoshop, especially for contrast and sharpening.
Let me know if you need more info.
Thank you, kisses… I hope to meet you again somewhere! :-)

Lake Atitlan in Guatemala

Hello guys! I am again in Guatemala, in the village San Pedro La Laguna, by the spectacular lake Atitlan. About 50 km wide and deep 340 meters, the lake is surrounded by three volcanoes and about fifteen Mayan indigenous villages, each with its own customs, traditions, dressing, and language.

Most of these villages suffered terrible repression during the civil war from 1960 to 1996, when, as elsewhere in Central America, the class struggle merged with the struggle between conquerors and natives. In fact, the populations of these areas have suffered massacres, atrocities, and violence well before that civil war. The repression began since the Spanish conquest, and it’s amazing how these people survived so many centuries without losing their identity.
A civil war which, needless to say (it’s like repeating an atrocious rhyme) was due mainly to the United States, preoccupied, as always, with the social gains achieved democratically by the people of Guatemala. More than 250,000 deaths, but they are Guatemalans, not from the U.S., so who cares.


Lake Atitlán


View of the lake from Panajachel. In the background, the volcanos. Among the various villages, it is possible to travel by boat or by land. In both cases, passing through charming sceneries.


San Pedro la laguna, where I’m now.




San Pedro market.




Little girls.


Other little girls.


A banda parades through the streets.


Religious writings on the walls.


Political writings.




Lady washing clothes in the lake.


On the boat to Santiago, a town located between two volcanoes.

A worker carrying wood.


Mascimòn (or Maximon), a Mayan saint of obscure origins. Probably, he is a Mayan god syncretized with Catholic influences. He is hosted each year in a different house in Santiago. The faithful offer him money, cigars, and alcohol.


Ceremony inside the house where is hosted Mascimòn. The man on the knee is the shaman.


The face of this lady was chosen for the 25 cents Guatemalan coin!


The people in Santiago have undergone countless repression by the Guatemalan army. The latest massacre took place on December 2, 1990, when the army opened fire during a peaceful demonstration, killing 14 people, including children.




Colors, abstract.


Ce vrimm wayù! (“See you guys!” – Neapolitan language).