How to get from San Cristobal de las Casas to Palenque

Palenque is a top destination for archaeology and Mayan-history lovers. Its main attraction is the complex of ruins located just 10 minutes from the town.

These ruins are the second most visited ruins in the country as they are some of the largest and well-preserved in Mexico. The complex dates back to 226 B.C and is well hidden in the rainforest, giving you an Indiana Jones-style feel. Some even prefer them to Chichen Itza as you’re also able to climb on these ruins!

Aside from the ruins, you can visit a number of waterfalls and lagoons. There are tours available from the town that cover two waterfalls, Misol-Ha and Agua Azul. Both are incredibly impressive and a welcome relief from the heat. Catazaja Lagoons is also the perfect place to spend the day relaxing whilst enjoying the beauty of the nature surrounding you.

What transport options are available to Palenque?

The most popular ways to travel the 220km (136 miles) from San Cristobal de las Casas to Palenque is an 8-hour 45 minutes bus ride or a 6-hour taxi. A bus ticket only costs 382 MXN ($18), whilst a taxi costs around 1700 MXN ($80).

The advantage of taking the bus is that it’s significantly cheaper and departs in the evening meaning you won’t spend a whole day travelling and you can save some money on accommodation too.

Even though it’s a long journey, taxis are still available for a reasonable price as both destinations are within the same state, Chiapas. The average price for this taxi journey is around 1,700 MXN ($80), but prices may vary depending on the season.

One of the taxi companies we can recommend is Taxi Seguro San Cristobal, an authorised company for this route.

Transport ModeDurationCostsAvailability
Bus8 hours 45 minutes382 MXN ($18)Check Bus Tickets
Taxi6 hours1700 MXN ($80)Check Taxi Availability


Itinerary from San Cristobal de las Casas to Palenque


  • San Cristobal de las Casas
  • 8 hours 45 minutes
  • Palenque Bus Terminal
  • 5-10 minutes
  • Palenque City Centre


Bus icon

San Cristobal de las Casas to Palenque by Bus

Duration: 8 hours 50 minutes
Cost: 382 MXN ($18)

Buses to Palenque depart from the Main Bus Terminal in San Cristobal de las Casas, located just a 10-minute walk from the town’s main square.

You can also get to the terminal by taxi which takes around 5 minutes from the city centre and rates start at 40 MXN ($2).

The bus departs at 22:30 and arrives at Palenque at 07:15 the next morning. If you are a good sleeper, you will be able to get a good nights rest and wake up the next morning in your new destination.

The bus does make a few stops along the way where you’re able to stretch your legs and go to the toilet.

Step 1: San Cristobal de las Casas to Palenque

Duration: 8 hours 45 minutes
Cost: 382 MXN ($18)

There is only one bus each day that goes from San Cristobal to Palenque. This bus leaves at night and is operated by OCC, a sub-branch of Mexico’s most popular bus company (ADO). The bus offers first-class buses that include AC, reclining seats and a toilet.

Bus OperatorSchedulesDurationCosts
OCC22:30 – 07:158 hours 45 minutesFrom 382 MXN ($18)

Check Bus Tickets on ClickBus

One of the worst things when travelling is turning up at the station and finding out there are no tickets left. As tickets can sell out quickly, we recommend booking in advance to secure your ticket.

Step 2: Palenque Bus Terminal to City Centre

Duration: 5-10 minutes
Cost: Free or taxi from 60 MXN ($3)

Once you arrive in Palenque, the bus will drop you at the central bus terminal in Palenque. There are a number of accommodation options within a short walking distance from the bus station.

If you’re staying outside of town, or just don’t want to walk around with all your luggage, the best option is to take a taxi with rates starting from around 60 MXN ($3).


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COVID-19 Limitations: Transportation services have limited availability and schedules might be less frequent. Please check our recommended booking websites for the most recent schedules.
COVID-19 UPDATE: Due to recent travel restrictions, most of the transportation services are currently unavailable or subject to change.