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Introducing Oaxaca City

With appealing cultural and culinary scenes and a beautiful colonial core of lovely, tree-shaded streets, Oaxaca is one of Mexico’s most captivating cities. Artists and artisans alike are inspired by the area’s creative atmosphere, indigenous traditions and bright, clear light. Oaxaca has top-class museums, charming inns, fascinating markets and its own subtle version of Mexican cuisine. The easygoing pace frequently breaks out into the fireworks of a fiesta, and there’s some brightly colored event unfolding in the streets or the Zócalo (Oaxaca’s lovely central square) almost every day.

Set at the nexus of three mountain-flanked valleys, the city is surrounded by fascinating archaeological sites and villages, many with bustling weekly markets. The surrounding country provides abundant opportunities for hiking, biking, horseback riding and cultural trips, and good tour operators make it easy to enjoy these experiences.

Despite its cultural riches, the state of Oaxaca is one of Mexico’s poorest, and the city’s fringe settlements and some outlying villages are as impoverished as any in Mexico. Yet the people of Oaxaca are among the most warmly hospitable in the country.