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Oaxaca (state)

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Oaxaca (state)
Oaxaca en México.svg
Flag of Oaxaca.svg
Quick Facts
Capital Oaxaca de Juárez
Government Mexican State
Currency Mexican Peso (MXN)
Area 93,757 km2
Population 3,866,280(2012 est.)
Language Spanish, Chinanteco, Zapotec, Mixtec(No official language)
Religion n/a
Electricity 127V/60Hz(North American(U.S.) plug)
Time Zone UTC -6/-5

Oaxaca is a state of Mexico.




Oaxaca is one of the poorest states in Mexico. Therefore, there's a great lack of public services in the whole state. While visiting Oaxaca, you will find a lot of roads and places in poor conditions, but people tend to be friendly if you give them nice comments about their place of origin. Regardless of the lack of services, Oaxaca has much to be proud of. Its great biodiversity and cultural heritage is reflected in having almost every type of ecosystem and many monuments from different epochs, including pyramids, churches and some new buildings in the capital city. So for an open-minded visitor, there is much to learn and enjoy in Oaxaca.


Oaxaca is known for its linguistic diversity. Many dialects are spoken in the state, with Zapotec and Mixtec being the most prevalent. Fortunately, most speakers of these dialects also speak Spanish, even if their knowledge of the language is limited sometimes, and their accent may be difficult for some native Spanish speakers to understand. The government is now doing a Hispanization work in all the indigenous communities in order to guarantee the knowledge of the Spanish language by every single person in the state. In Oaxaca de Juárez it's still very common to hear indigenous people who are selling some kind of merchandice talking to each other in their native language (Zapotec, Mixtec, Chontal, etc.) However, they'll always address you in Spanish, so the English-speaking tourist should make an effort to learn at least the very basics of Spanish.

Get in[edit]

Oaxaca, especially Oaxaca city, is well served by long-distance bus from major destinations in central and south Mexico. Most tourists catch an overnight bus from San Cristobal (10h) in Chiapas. Alternatively, you can visit Juchitán de Zaragoza and break the journey to Chiapas there.

Get around[edit]

Most people use long-distance bus services such as those provided by OCC or the slightly cheaper alternative, SUD.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Monte Alban - A 2,500 year old Zapotec city built atop a mountain outside Oaxaca City.
  • Hierve del agua - A mineral spring with large travertine formations.
  • Santiago Apoala - A village surrounded by cliffs in the Mixtec region. It has two waterfalls and a some caves and supports "eco-tourism".

Do[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

Oaxaca has a very rich gastronomy that offers a wide range of dishes. Most commonly in Oaxaca de Juárez you will have the chance to eat the famous Tlayudas, a giant tortilla filled with beans and the oaxacan quesillo (wrapped cheese) and accompanied by tasajo (beef). Dauntless travelers should also try Chapulines (Grasshoppers), which are another popular dish that real tourists should not miss!

Drink[edit][add listing]

Sleep[edit][add listing]


Stay safe[edit]

Get out[edit]

  • Guatemala Hop on a bus anywhere in Oaxaca, and head for Guatemala. One route goes via Tapachula (the quicker way, along the coast), and the other via San Cristobal de las Casas, and off to Guatemala afterwards.

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