Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Mexico: Travel/Tourist Information Guide
Tuxtla Gutiérrez, simply referred to as Tuxtla, is the capital and largest city of Mexico’s southernmost state of Chiapas. A busy, modern metropolis, Tuxtla has had one of the fastest development rates in Mexico, in the past decades. Although the city doesn’t overwhelm with attractions and style, it makes up for it with a thriving nightlife. Many tourists just pass through Tuxtla, on their way to other destinations, but the comforts and amenities it offers make it a worthwhile stopping point for a few days. The city is also a good starting point for visiting the surrounding attractions of Chiapas.
Tuxtla’s main artery, Avenida Central, which becomes Blvd Belisario Domínguez, is home to some of the city’s best restaurants, hotels and shopping centers. Getting around Tuxtla is best done by using taxis, or the public bus system.
The Zoques were the first arrivals in the area, and named it Coyatoc, meaning land of rabbits. The following Aztecs called it Tuchtlan, with the same meaning. Gutiérrez was a late addition, during the 1840s, in honor of Joaquín Miguel Gutiérrez, Conservative politician. The official founding date of Tuxtla is unknown, but in the 16th century, a group of Dominican monks who had built a monastery nearby, reorganized the Zoques into church centered communities. The king of Spain officially recognized the village in 1813, when the population was at around 5000 people, most of which were Zoques. A decade later the villa declared independence from Spain and the regional government, which was not accepted by either party. During the Mexican War of Independence, the regional capital was moved to San Cristobal, loyal to the crown. During the 1990s, the political instability created by the Zapatista uprising forced many indigenous people from rural areas into the city. Over the past years, the city has struggled with the influx of illegal immigrants coming in from Central America.