Oaxaca, Mexico – 11 Reasons to Fall in Love with this Stunning City

by | Apr 12, 2023

Oaxaca, Mexico.

Located right in the middle of this huge country, and pronounced “Wahaca”, this city (which actually feels a lot more like a town) is in itself worth making the trip to Mexico for.

It’s a magical little place and one we love dearly. We spend 3 nights here during our 11-Day Mexico trip and it’s consistently a highlight for all of our guests. 

Here’s why.

1. The streets are awash with colour

Look at how bright it is.

Streets in Jalatlaco, Oaxaca, Mexico

All of the buildings are painted in vivid colours.

Bright pink building in Oaxaca City, Mexico

Even our hotel is adorable.

Lovely boutique hotel in Oaxaca, Mexico

2. The food is different level

There’s Mexican food.

Then there’s Mexican food in Mexico.

Then there’s Mexican food in Oaxaca!

It’s fantastic, the best you will taste, and you’re going to want to try the local specialities (like Memelas, Tlayudas and Mole).

Not your standard hotel breakfast going on here.

Other Way Round Travel group trip in Oaxaca, Mexico

There’s a wide range of local dishes you won’t find elsewhere in Mexico.

Food in Oaxaca, Mexico

One of our favourite restaurants in the city (very much experiential dining).

Rooftop restaurant in Oaxaca, Mexico

3. Street art here is brilliant

Especially the neighbourhoods of Xochimilco and Jalatlaco. Great places to spend a few hours wandering without a plan.

Colourful streets in Oaxaca, Mexico

You’ll spot lots of neat artwork like this.

4. It’s a great place to know better Mexico’s indigenous communities

The population is 56% here compared to 15% nationwide.

We visit the nearby Zapotec village of San Marcos Tlapazoloa and learn to do pottery with the areas red clay.

Pottery lesson in Oaxaca, Mexico

And are treated to the best Zapotec style food.

Zapotec food in Oaxaca, Mexico

5. Oaxaca is the home of artisans

There is so much art, crafts and beautiful textiles all around.

Local hand crafts in Oaxaca, Mexico

6. The beautiful Plaza de Santo Domingo is a great place for people watching

It’s the perfect place to chill and watch the world go by.

Plaza de Santo Domingo, Oaxaca, Mexico

7. You’ll likely bump into a Calenda

These are local parades to celebrate weddings, birthdays, holidays etc…and they’re amazing fun.

8. There are so many cool rooftop bars and restaurants

The weather is perfect for dining outdoors.

View over Oaxaca City

With great views over the city.

Fine dining in Oaxaca, Mexico

9. Mezcal 

The smokier cousin of tequila is produced right here in Oaxaca and you can go visit the local distilleries to see how they make it.

We get involved by chopping down some agave.

Visiting a Mezcal farm in Oaxaca, Mexico

And then we get to enjoy the end product.

Drinking mezcal in Oaxaca City

10. It’s the best place to experience Day of the Dead celebrations

This happens every November and we spend 3 days in the city during the festivities.

Oaxaca city during day of the dead

It’s also the perfect excuse for some face painting.

Facepainting for Dia de Los Muertos

11. The archealogical sites of Mitla and Monte Alban are nearby

Both a short drive outside the city and well worth the visit.

Mitla historical site in Oaxaca

Hope that gives you some insight into what to expect in Oaxaca during our 11-Day Mexico Tour. It’s a place you’ll want to come back to time and time again.