When you think of Oaxaca, surely alebrijes, mezcal, the Guelaguetza celebration or Oaxacan tamales come to mind; but Oaxaca has much more to offer. It is one of the Mexican states with more biodiversity and a great cultural heritage, making its tourist destinations famous worldwide. In this marvelous place you can visit Magic Towns, colonial cities and wonderful and countless beaches. Book your cheap flights and get to know the best tourist places in Oaxaca:
Oaxaca de Juárez
Oaxaca de Juárez is the official name of the state capital and – along with Monte Albán – was declared Cultural Heritage of Humanity more than twenty years ago. An ideal day in this beautiful city would begin by having breakfast in the popular 20 de Noviembre Market, located in the historic center. This market is known for its famous meat aisle, although you can also enjoy other typical dishes in the dining rooms that abound in the market. You will also the Handicraft Market nearby and the Benito Juarez Market, where mezcal abounds, and you can also get typical goods such as quesillo, chorizo and tasajo – a sort of jerky that is produced throughout Oaxaca. Besides, if you consider yourself a nature lover, you can acquire organic products in the Pochote market.
Stroll through the streets full of green quarry, a fundamental element in the architecture of the city and walk along the Macedonio Alcalá pedestrian street up to the Temple of Santo Domingo, which has become a symbol of Oaxaca. Behind the temple is the Ethnobotanical Garden, one of the biggest attractions of the city. This whole area is known as a tourist corridor and it is well worth spending a couple of days to get to know its gastronomic, cultural and commercial offer.
Monte Albán is located about 7 km from the city of Oaxaca, so it is easy to reach by road. You can take a bus, go by car or even by taxi. This city – founded by the Zapotecs – at its highest point came to house 35,000 inhabitants. Nowadays you can observe the architectural vestiges that speak of the life of a culture that developed astronomical observatories, ceremonial centers and a ballgame, among other constructions. The archaeological zone comprises a fairly large space and to access it you must climb a small slope, so we recommend you to wear sports shoes and comfortable clothes.
Hierve el Agua
Hierve el Agua is one of the most popular destinations in Oaxaca. If you plan to visit places like Teotitlán del Valle and Mitla, you cannot miss the petrified waterfalls in the highest part of the mountains, the view from here is simply spectacular. Although its name indicates otherwise, the water pools that make up the small spa do not have hot water, but it is rich in minerals, so people attribute them healing powers. Let’s say wearing a swimsuit is not a priority, but if you go in the summer, a safe dip will refresh you.
San Bartolo Coyotepec
This is one of the most famous pottery villages in Mexico. Located just 10 km from the capital, Coyotepec is the ideal place for black-mud lovers. About 95% of the population of this place is dedicated to the production of the famous material, which makes Coyotepec one of the most productive pottery centers in the country. The beauty of their crafts is recognized internationally, the styles are varied and you can hardly leave this beautiful town without bringing back a couple of souvenirs.
On the way to Hierve el Agua you will find Mitla, the second most important archaeological zone in the central valleys of Oaxaca. Do not miss this cultural experience and enjoy this city built after the decline of Monte Albán. Unlike the latter, Mitla is a place with more contained spaces, so if you are a lover of architecture, you will be fascinated. Mitla also offers other attractions: it is surrounded by mezcal factories and restaurants where you can enjoy Oaxacan cuisine, like an authentic segueza.
Teotitlán del Valle
One of the most beautiful roads in Oaxaca leads to this textile community; a Zapotec village that has preserved its traditions and is happy to share them with the world through their creations. In the Teotitlán market you can find carpets and hand-woven clothes by the inhabitants of this town, who use natural pigments such as cochineal grana, pomegranate, walnut and indigo plant as a dye for their threads and fabrics. Do not forget to ask for a demonstration to know all the details of the creation process, from wool spinning to pigmentation and weaving.