The Top 10 Reasons to Visit Oaxaca!
1. Gourmet Cuisine
Whether you want to dine in one of Oaxaca's excellent restaurants or take classes from one of the city's most famous cooks, you will be spoilt for choice in Oaxaca. From mole to mezcal Oaxaca cuisine is exquisite and you should be sure to make the most of it when you visit Oaxaca! Find out where on our Oaxaca Restaurants page.
2. Arts and Crafts
If you want to buy some original handicrafts then Oaxaca is the place to do it. Some of Mexico's most talented artisans reside in the city and the little towns that surround it meaning you can buy straight from the source and get a great price too. Arts and crafts in Oaxaca come in all shapes and sizes from black pottery to wooden carvings, find out more by following the link for Oaxaca Arts and Crafts.
Oaxaca is almost always celebrating a festival, however, the most spectacular is undoubtedly the Guelaguetza which takes place in July. An elaborate and unforgettable celebration of Oaxaca's indigenous culture and a definite must-see event. See Guelaguetza Oaxaca for more information.
From pre-hispanic ruins to impressive colonial masterpieces, Oaxaca is home to some beautiful architecture which pays tribute to the region's past and sprinkles the roadsides with colour. Each area contains a mixed bag of buildings from humble homes to majestic mansions and baroque basílicas. Click for more on Architecture in Oaxaca, Mexico.
It's worth packing lightly when you visit Oaxaca so you can fill your suitcase with the goodies you find at Oaxaca's many markets. From the city centre treasure troves bursting with both culinary and handicraft delights, to the traditional village bazaars, don't miss the chance to join the locals in a spot of shopping. Visit Oaxaca Markets for more information.
6. Monte Albán
One of Mexico's most incredible pre-hispanic sites is just a 20 minute bus ride from Oaxaca City. Make sure you dedicate a day to explore the fantastic ruins of the old Zapotec capital city when you visit Oaxaca. Dominantly standing on top of a mountain, the city looks out over unbeatable landscapes. Get the lowdown at Monte Albán Oaxaca.
The most defining feature of Oaxaca city and an addictively chilled out place, the Oaxaca Zócalo is definitely a good place to soak up some of that Oaxaqueñan vibe. The main square is a meeting place for locals and visitors alike, with frequent concerts and lots of cafés, this is undoubtedly Oaxaca's heart and soul. See our Oaxaca Zócalo guide for more information.
The linguistic diversity of the region comes from Oaxaca's rich ethnic electicism. 16 different groups continue to inhabit the region, carefully maintaining and upholding their own languages and dialects. It is a refreshing and special experience to witness the daily exchanges between these communities when so many places in our modern world have been subject to the death of minority languages. To find out about the 16 indigenous languages and their respective dialects, check out our Oaxaca Language page.
9. Art Galleries
A thriving arts scene and long standing tradition in making handicrafts makes Oaxaca an incredible place to enjoy art from both past and present. The city's large selection of art galleries are varied, inspired and well maintained - a real pleasure to stroll around. For full listings see Oaxaca Art Galleries.
10. Central Valleys (Valles Centrales)
One of Oaxaca's best selling points is its location - nestled between three verdant valleys the city has perfect access to the attractions of Mexico's Central Valleys - be it hiking, moutain biking, markets or village life that you're after, you'll find it all here when you visit Oaxaca! Get the lowdown by clicking on Valles Centrales de Oaxaca.