15 Best Things to Do in Oaxaca City, Mexico: Oaxaca City Travel Guide


15 Best Things to Do in Oaxaca City, Mexico: Oaxaca City Travel Guide


Welcome to Oaxaca City, Mexico! This charming and vibrant city is filled with rich history, culture, and breathtaking sights. In this article, we will explore the 15 best things to do in Oaxaca City, ensuring you have an unforgettable experience. From exploring ancient ruins to savoring delectable cuisine, Oaxaca City has something for every traveler.

1. Discover Monte Albán

Start your journey by exploring the ancient ruins of Monte Albán. This UNESCO World Heritage Site was once the capital of the Zapotec civilization and offers stunning panoramic views of the city. Marvel at the intricate stone carvings and immerse yourself in the fascinating history of this archaeological wonder.

2. Visit Santo Domingo Church

Located near the city center, the Santo Domingo Church is a remarkable example of Baroque architecture. Admire its ornate facade and step inside to witness the opulent interior. The attached museum showcases impressive religious art and artifacts.

3. Explore the Ethnobotanical Garden

Nature enthusiasts will love the Ethnobotanical Garden, a serene oasis in the heart of the city. Learn about the diverse plant species native to the region and their traditional uses. It's a perfect spot to relax and connect with nature.

4. Taste Oaxacan Cuisine

No trip to Oaxaca City is complete without savoring its delectable cuisine. Indulge in traditional dishes like mole, tlayudas, and mezcal. Visit the local markets and restaurants to experience the authentic flavors that have made Oaxaca City a gastronomic delight.

5. Wander through Benito Juárez Market

Immerse yourself in the local culture by exploring Benito Juárez Market. This bustling market is a treasure trove of handicrafts, textiles, and traditional souvenirs. Bargain with local vendors and take home some unique mementos.

6. Take a Chocolate Workshop

Chocolate lovers will adore taking a chocolate-making workshop. Oaxaca is renowned for its chocolate, and you can learn the art of creating this delicacy from scratch. Engage your senses as you grind cocoa beans and indulge in the rich aroma of freshly made chocolate.

7. Hike to Hierve el Agua

Venture outside the city to witness the natural wonder of Hierve el Agua. These petrified waterfalls are a sight to behold. Hike along the trails, take a dip in the mineral-rich pools, and capture breathtaking photos of the awe-inspiring landscape.

8. Experience a Guelaguetza Performance

If you're visiting during July, don't miss the Guelaguetza festival. This cultural celebration showcases traditional dances, music, and colorful costumes. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere and witness the rich cultural heritage of Oaxaca.

9. Tour the Textile Workshops

Oaxaca is famous for its vibrant textiles and intricate weavings. Take a tour of the textile workshops to see local artisans at work. You can purchase beautiful handcrafted textiles as souvenirs or gifts.

10. Admire the Macedonio Alcalá Theater

Art and music enthusiasts will appreciate the beauty of the Macedonio Alcalá Theater. This historic venue hosts various performances, including concerts and plays. Step inside to admire the stunning architecture and enjoy a memorable evening of entertainment.

11. Explore the Rufino Tamayo Museum

Delve into the world of contemporary art at the Rufino Tamayo Museum. This museum houses an impressive collection of modern and abstract art, including works by renowned Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo.

12. Discover the Oaxaca Cathedral

A visit to Oaxaca City wouldn't be complete without exploring the Oaxaca Cathedral. This architectural marvel boasts a mix of Baroque and Neoclassical styles. Step inside to witness the beautiful altar and intricate artwork.

13. Take a Mezcal Distillery Tour

Learn about the production process of mezcal, a traditional Mexican alcoholic beverage. Take a guided tour of a local mezcal distillery to understand the art of distillation and enjoy some tastings of this unique spirit.

14. Enjoy the View from El Mirador

For a breathtaking panoramic view of Oaxaca City, head to El Mirador. It's a short hike up to this viewpoint, but the reward is worth it. Capture stunning photos of the cityscape and surrounding mountains.

15. Relax at the Zócalo

End your journey by unwinding at the Zócalo, the main square of Oaxaca City. Sit under the shade of ancient trees, people-watch, and soak in the relaxed ambiance. It's the perfect spot to reflect on your memorable experiences in this enchanting city.


Oaxaca City offers a remarkable blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. From exploring ancient ruins to indulging in mouthwatering cuisine, every moment in this city is filled with wonder. Embrace the vibrant atmosphere, immerse yourself in the local traditions, and create unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime.


  • Is Oaxaca City safe for travelers? 

  • Oaxaca City is generally safe for travelers, but like any other destination, it's essential to stay vigilant and take necessary precautions.

  • When is the best time to visit Oaxaca City? 

  • The best time to visit Oaxaca City is during the dry season from November to April, when the weather is pleasant for sightseeing.

  • Are credit cards widely accepted in Oaxaca City? 

  • While credit cards are accepted at most hotels and restaurants, it's advisable to carry cash for shopping in local markets.

  • What are some popular day trips from Oaxaca City? 

  • Popular day trips include visits to the artisan village of Teotitlán del Valle and the ancient ruins of Mitla.

  • How do I get around Oaxaca City? 

  • Oaxaca City is relatively walkable, but you can also use taxis or local buses to get around conveniently.

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