The Pros of Hiring a Pro
Even if you usually turn your nose up at the thought of joining a tour group, Chiapas is a place where you should reconsider. If you want to see the isolated ruins at Bonampak and Yaxchilán, it's far easier to take a tour from Palenque Town. (The nearby ruins of Palenque are another matter—there's no need to join a tour.) And if you want to see the villages near San Cristóbal, by all means book a tour with a reputable guide. Going to a village like San Juan Chamula with a local means you'll get an insider's perspective and perhaps even be invited into someone's home. If you show up alone, you may get nothing but suspicious stares.