Oaxaca
Mexico
By Brandi N.R. Rhone

The State of Oaxaca offers everything from beautiful beaches to well-maintained ruins hidden in the mountains. The gateway to this area is Oaxaca City. The capital of Oaxaca State,Oaxaca City,  is a charming colonial town that offers a variety of activities for every traveler. Here you can get a glimpse of how pre-Colombian traditions have been incorporated into daily life.

Oaxaca City is accessible by two nearby airports , Oaxaca Xoxocotlan International Airport (OAX) or Bahias de Huatulco International Airport (HUX). WhatsCheaper.com invites you to book your flight with us, follow this link (https://www.whatscheaper.com/flight.php). There are plenty of great places to stay in Oaxaca – click (https://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php) to search for great hotels in the city.

Oaxaca City has a reputation for being very welcoming to its visitors and walking around this city you feel true Mexican hospitality at its finest. You can easily immerse yourself in the culture of Oaxaca. One of the best features of Oaxaca is the Andador Macedonio Alcala. Andador Alcala is a pedestrian only street that starts from Templo de Santo Domingo and end at El Zoclalo. You can shop for art, sip coffee, or sample chocolate with Mole at the many boutiques that line the street while strolling along on Andador Alcala.

A visit to Templo y Convento de Santo Domino is a must for anyone spending time in Oaxaca. The convent grounds are lovely and you can get some history of the area. The church has elaborate architecture that is classic to most well maintained cathedrals. Santo Domingo is a very popular spot and is great for people watching. The gilded walls are awe inspiring and weddings are frequently held there because of this. Be sure check to see if any private events are going on before you set your tour time.

The best places to practice your haggling skills are Mercado Benito Juarez and Mercado 20 de Noviembre. Benito Juarez is the open market where you can find textiles, Alebrijes, ceramics and jewelry. Oaxaca is known for its Black Pottery and this would be a great place to pick up some quality pieces. 20 de Noviembre market is the Food market in Oaxaca City. Here you can sample some Oaxacan style mozzarella, Mole and if you are adventurous there are lots of vendors that sell Chapulines (grilled grasshoppers). If you have enrolled in a cooking workshop this is one of the markets they visit to pick up fresh ingredients. Oaxaca is also famous for its Chocolate. At this 20 de Noviembre you can find chocolate in many forms from drinks to a thick paste used for Mole Negro (yes they put chocolate it that too).

Oaxaca has a large indigenous population that has managed to assimilate without losing much of their identity. You can see evidence of this every July when Oaxaca holds its big Guelaguetza Celebration, and some dance troupes do mini tributes year round. WhatsCheaper.com also suggests visiting two archaeological sites Monte Alban and Mitla for more history of the Zapotecs, one of the predominant indigenous groups in the state of Oaxaca. Monte Alban is a reconstruction of ruins excavated and mirrors the mountains that are the backdrop of this location. They illustrate harmony with nature was important Zapotec culture and you can see the famous “Danzantes or Dancers” that were found at this excavated site. The ruins at Mitla are of  a Zapotec village that survived destruction by the Spanish conquistadors. When they came to Mitla they erected a Roman Catholic church in the area and left most everything else intact. These ruins have weathered time very well and some of the original paint is still visible. Geometric shapes called “grecas” are used in the stonework in the buildings in Mitla, other depictions of these shapes can be found in the Zapotec textiles everywhere in Oaxaca.

Tule (Too-lay) is a Small town near Oaxaca City whose claim to fame is the Árbol Del Tule (Tree of Tule). This tree is rumored to be over 2000 years old (recent scientific dating put it closer to 1600 years but its still impressive), with a large, thick trunk that was originally thought to be made up of many trees but is found to be from the same tree. This tree rings with chirping birds and has been nicknamed the tree of life because many have claimed to see shapes of various animal images in the gnarly tree trunk. Don’t forget to stop by the church nearby the Árbol Del Tule. Though it’s small, the details and colors of the chapel interior are marvelous.

For a small city Oaxaca has an active nightlife. There are Discotequas, Bars and restaurants that open late. WhatsCheaper suggests visiting El Zocalo for evening fun. If you want a cold cerveza or a warm mezcal you can find it in el Zocalo. Open air seating at eateries attached to some of the hotels are a great way to pass a warm Mexican night. You may be lucky enough to get a Mariahci serrande (for a small tip of course).

Oaxaca's central location facilitates sightseeing to close by attractions with the city as your home base. Chapulines to choloclate, musems to Mariachies,Oaxaca City Oaxaca is a great vacation destination. Book you trip to Oaxaca with Whatscheaper by clicking here (https://www.whatscheaper.com/flight.php).

MUST SEE IN Oaxaca LIST:

  • 1. Templo de Santo Domingo de Guzman
  • 2. Ethnobotanical Garden
  • 3. Mitla
  • 4. Museum of Contemporary Art
  • 5. Cathedral of Oaxaca
  • 6. Benito Juárez Home
  • 7. State Government Palace
  • 8. National Mexican Turtle Center
  • 9. Oaxaca Regional Museum
  • 10. Monte Alban

Oaxaca EVENT CALENDAR:

  • 1. Day of the Three Kings - January
  • 2. Carnival - February
  • 3. Benito Juárez's Birthday - March
  • 4. Day of the Holy Cross - May
  • 5. Cinco de Mayo - May
  • 6. Guelagetza - July
  • 7. Food of the Gods Festival - October
  • 8. Day of the Dead – November
  • 9. Oaxaca Filmfest - November
  • 10. Night of the Radishes - December

PHOTO GALLERY