Indigenous cultures of Chiapas

Indigenous Cultures 7.5 hrs a week $110 per person

This workshop is directed to everybody interested in fascinating peoples and cultures of Chiapas, their languages, their history and their vibrant present.

In an ever faster changing world, the indigenous cultures of Chiapas have survived endless attempts of domination, serfdom and exploitation.  Their cultures today are still very much alive (there are more than 1 million Tsotsil and Tseltal speakers in the highlands and the jungle), their dress still expresses their cultural identity and the Zapatista uprising of 1994 has brought renewed pride and the desire for self determination.

This workshop is meant to be an introduction into the different aspects of indigenous cultures in Chiapas.  Its design  focuses on the descriptive, reflexive and experiential aspects of indigenous life.  It will cover the following topics, depending on the interests of the participants of this workshop:

  • Languages of Chiapas
  • Regions of Chiapas
  • Indigenous worldview
  • Tsotsil philosophy
  • Textiles of Chiapas: Art and tradition
  • Health and disease amongst indigenous people
  • The changing life of women
  • Religion within the indigenous world in Chiapas.
  • The Catholic Church and its relation with the indigenous people of Chiapas.
  • Condition of indigenous people in the 21st century.
  • Introduction to the economy of indigenous people. The Zapatista movement
  • Introduction to  Mayan medicine.

Participants who are specially interested in one sub-topic of this workshop can add an additional week for a more in-depth treatment of the topic with outings to indigenous communities and indigenous guest speakers.

Cooking Classes

3-5 hrs per session $26-34 USD per person

The Mexican cooking classes take place in a beautiful old home with patios and gardens in the oldest part of town, El Cerillo, overlooking San Cristobal.  Different “doñas” of San Cristóbal and visiting chefs cook delicious meals with interested participants.

The classes can be booked either:

  • As a 3-4 hour class ($ 26.00 USD per person) or
  • Including a tour of the biggest indigenous market (total of 4-5 hours, $ 34.00 USD per person)

A sample menu:

  • Appetizer with tostadas, local cheese, guacamole
  • 3 different “chilies rellenos”with Mexican white rice:
    • Chiles poblanos filled with vegetables, chicken and pork
    • Chiles anchos filled with cheese in cream and coriander sauce
    • Chiles jalapeños filled with tuna fish
  • Agua de Chía, Jamaica or tamarindo
  • Dessert

If you are interested in learning a specific dish, please ask us and we will try to accommodate your personal cooking interests.

Salsa & Merengue

Salsa and Merengue 1 hr per session $6 USD per person

This workshop introduces the student to basic steps, which are easy to apply to many popular dances in Mexico, such as Salsa and Merengue. No experience is required and the emphasis is on having fun and gaining confidence on the dance floor.


Mexican History 7.5 hrs a week $110 USD per person

In this workshop, students and the instructor will explore Mexico’s past, stopping to analyze specific events, throughout the history of Mexico, which have influenced the current social and political state of the country.