BEST CULTURAL ACTIVITIES
Pedestrian Walkway Macedonia Alcalá - Walk on the pedestrian-only street from the Templo de Santo Domingo to the Zócalo to get acquainted with the heart of the city.
Parque Conzati - My favorite park in Oaxaca, it’s super sweet, small, and a lovely place to chill out on a park bench for while if you need a break. Or a sandwich (Tortas la Hormiga).
Ethno-Botanical Garden (Jardín Etno-Botánico) - A stunning botanical garden that tells the history of Oaxacan people through its plants. A must if you’re into botany or anthropology. By tour only, available in English or Spanish, check website for details.
Instituto Artes Gráficas de Oaxaca (IAGO) - A beautiful space in and of itself, IAGO is also the extensive art library courtesy of artist Francisco Toledo and hosts high quality art exhibitions. Free, check your bag at the door.
Textile Museum (Museo Textil) - One of the most beautiful buildings in Oaxaca, the museum has rotating exhibitions featuring textiles from Oaxaca, but also Mexico and the world. Their gift shop has a good selection of high quality textiles as well.
Rufino Tamayo Museum - The private collection of the Mexican artist has become the best museum of pre-Columbian artifacts in Oaxaca.
Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Oaxaca (MACO) - THE contemporary art museum in Oaxaca. The exhibitions are hit or miss, but if you’re into contemporary art it’s worth the stop.
Centro Fotografico Alvarez Bravo - Well-curated photography exhibits in a stunning space.
Instituto de Artes Gráficas de Oaxaca
Oaxaca’s markets are part cultural activity and part shopping, depending on your mood.
Veinte de Noviembre & Benito Juarez - These are two separate markets that occupy two adjoining blocks on the south side of the Zocalo. The Benito Jaurez market is the closest to the Zocalo and sells primarily artisan goods, while the Veinte de Noviembre Market contains mostly food stalls. This is a great place to shop for goods from huarache sandals to hats, straw and plastic woven bags, clay, mezcal and mole.
La Merced - La Merced is smaller and less crowded than Benito Juarez, but still offers a great selection while being decidedly more low key. A favorite place to go food shopping, enjoy hot chocolate and pan de yema, a fresh juice, or chilaquiles in the morning. Sunday is the best day to visit as vendors come from afar to sell their wares outside the market, making for unique offerings and a lively atmosphere
La Cosecha - A great organic market in the heart of Oaxaca. This is mostly a spot to get a delicious healthy lunch, but you can also shop for groceries and peruse a couple of booth stocked with select artisan goods.
Artisan Market - The Artisan Market contains primarily textile goods. It’s the best place to see a huge selection of clothes and other textiles from all over the state of Oaxaca. An added bonus is that you are mostly buying directly from the artisan themselves, as opposed to from a reseller shop.
Food & artisan goods @ Benito Juarez and Veinte de Noviembre Markets
I’ve created a Google Map with my favorite shops all tagged, and you can download it for your own use HERE.
These are the shops featured:
La Tiendita de Barro by Colectivo 1050 - An adorable little shop of clay goods.
Lanii Gifts - Modern designs from traditional materials.
Marchanta - Perhaps the best curation of goods from Oaxaca, Mexico, and Latin America.
Draco Tradicion Textil - Colorful traditional textiles reimagined into fresh feminine clothes and bags.
Huizache Arte Vivo de Oaxaca - A good selection of different kinds of traditional artisanal goods.
Coyote Showroom - Modern designs in a small, curated boutique.
Los Buales de Juana - Best selection of high quality textiles from all over the state.
Tienda Q - Elegant clothes and accessories in a beautiful space.
Voces de Copal - The best example of alebrijes (small intricately painted animals) in the city.
Miku Meku Atelier - A workshop with an interesting selection of clothes and home goods.
Draco Tradición Textil. Photo courtesy of @zuelemzarco.
As always, let me know your thoughts!
If you missed the previous two parts of the travel guide, you might want to check out: