Diverse, varied, surprising, are some of the adjectives that could well define the millenarian land of the Zapotecas and the Mixtecos, the prevailing human groups in the area before the arrival of the Spaniards. They built ostentatious cities such as Monte Alban and admirable ceremonial centres like Mitla, clear evidence of the Mesoamericans’ architectural abilities.
Nowadays, the City of Oaxaca
, capital of the homonymous
state, is – according to many – the Mexican city with the most native
influence. The Amuzgo, Cuicatecos, Chatitos, Chinantecos, Ixcatecos,
Mazatecos, Mixtecos, Zapotecos and Zoques, are some of the ethnic
groups rooted in this region of gentle weather (it does not suffocate
nor freeze), located in the South-eastern part of Mexico.
It was founded in 1529 at the outskirts of a town of pre-Columbian roots called Huaxyacac (“Place of Pumpkins”). But at that time it was named as Villa de Antequera de Guaxaca, which, perhaps owed to its lengthiness, was reduced to Oaxaca only.
With imposing colonial buildings and vibrant markets, the state capital, located at 488 kilometres from Mexico DF and at a height of 1500 meters above sea level, is the perfect starting point to travel through history in the ancient Zapotecan domains, tour about cheerful artisan towns and adventure towards the pleasure of the paradisiacal Bays of Puerto Escondido, Puerto Angel and Huatulco.
History and nature get mixed and forever embraced at Oaxaca
A state in which traditions are respected, an Indian, crossbred
and Hispanic city that seduces by its high spirited racial melting
pot, and by the evocative presence of its edifices and temples,
so beautiful and impressive that UNESCO considers them as part of
the Cultural and Historical Patrimony of Humanity.
And if two plus centuries ago Francisco the Franciscan – pardon the redundancy – declared that God put all the remaining mountains after creating the world on these lands, today we dare to say that the Almighty performed very well in making this decision. Thousands of travellers – believers or not – are thankful for it with all their hearts.