Hear about traveling to Oaxaca, Mexico as the Amateur Traveler talks to Susan Metenosky from brooklyntropicali.com about the city she now calls home.
Susan says, “It is my favorite place. I now live here. My first trip was in 2015 and I just kept coming back for months at a time. I had been traveling full-time for a while. I am a travel blogger. When I was ready to settle down, this was the place that was at the top of my list.”
Susan gives us an itinerary that starts in the city of Oaxaca and then explores some of the interesting cultural, natural, and historic sites in the area around Oaxaca.
We start at the Church of Santo Domingo de Guzmán which is an ornate church that has become another hub for activities in the cities besides the zocalo (central square). There is also a botanical garden here with local plants that can be visited on an English speaking tour a few times a week and a small museum. Susan also recommends two other museums in the city: Museo Rufino Tamayo and Museo Textil de Oaxaca. Museo Rufino Tamayo is the private collection of pre-Columbian art collected by the artist Rufino Tamayo. The textile museum explains the many textile styles in the area that date back to pre-Colombian peoples.
Susan recommends we shop at the Mercado Benito Juárez for local goods and stop at the Mercado 20 de Noviembre to try some of the local food (especially the Carne Asada). We talk about a variety of food and drinks that one should try in Oaxaca. These include molé, mescal, crickets, memelas, tlayudas, garnachas, tejate (drink), and chocolate (drink). We also talk about a possible visit to one of the largest markets in Latin America (Central de Abastos) for those not afraid to dive deep into the local culture.
As we head out of town Susan recommends a stop at Hierve el Agua which is her favorite natural site. It is a “petrified waterfall”. It looks like a waterfall but it is made of rock. It is a dramatic and impressive place to visit.
There are two well-known archeological sites in the Oaxaca area. The first is the spectacular Monte Alban. 2500 years ago the Zapotec people flattened the top of the mountain to build a city in the clouds. Mitla is another Zapotec site known for its elaborate stonework.
Susan suggests we get to the Sunday market at Tlacolula or the Friday market at Ocotlán de Morelos for some of the best local craftwork.
For weaving, Susan recommends a visit to the villages of Santo Tomás Jalieza (known for their use of backstrap looms) or Teotitlán del Valle.
For pottery, she also suggests a visit to the villages of San Marcos Tlapazola for the red pottery, San Bartolo Coyotepec for the black pottery, and Atzompa for the green pottery.
She also recommends the town of San Martín Tilcajete for their alebrije (brightly painted fanciful creatures).
Come to Oaxaca for the history, come for the culture or just come for the 7 types of molé.
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This episode is sponsored by Sawyer the maker of Permethrin which can be used to treat clothing to protect you and your loved ones from insects include tick-borne diseases like Lyme disease.
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Things to do in Oaxaca Mexico
Church of Santo Domingo de Guzmán
Basilica of Nuestra Señora de Soledad
Museo Rufino Tamayo, Oaxaca
Museo Textil de Oaxaca
Mercado de Abastos
Hierve el Agua
Ocotlán de Morelos
Santo Tomás Jalieza
Teotitlán del Valle
Red Pottery of San Marcos Tlapazola
Barro negro pottery (San Bartolo Coyotepec)
San Martín Tilcajete
11 Must Eats in Oaxaca: 11 Important Oaxacan Dishes + Where to Find Them
7 Things to Eat in Oaxaca Markets
8 Places to Drink Mezcal in Oaxaca
Tejate: The Most Magical Drink in Oaxaca – Eater LA
3 Best Places to Drink Tejate in Oaxaca
1 Week Oaxaca Trip – Mezcal, Food + Culture Itinerary in Oaxaca: Travel Daydreaming
Marilyn wrote about Travel to Oslo Norway – Episode 707
Just enjoyed listening to your Oslo podcast with Jason. I was a little surprised about a few things he left out that as a history lover especially I think you would appreciate. The Akershus is a castle fortress with a long history walking distance from downtown. (The Norway Pavilion at EPCOT Orlando is a replica of it.) The WWII Norwegian Resistance museum is there. There are several places related to the Nobel Peace Prize worth visiting including the Nobel Peace Museum, City Hall and the Grand Hotel. And for fun the Oslo Opera House is a wonderful and popular place to crawl all over and the view from the roof is fantastic.
I’ve been listening to the Amateur Traveler podcast for many years but this is the first time I’ve made the effort to get in touch. I just wanted to let you know that I’m continuing to enjoy every episode whether it’s about somewhere I’ve already been, an area I plan on visiting or a destination that I will probably never go to! I live in northern England and prior to lockdown I listened to the podcast on my daily walk to the office, but since that routine is a thing of the past you’re now in my ears while I’m strolling down by the River Tees or in the beautiful woods and meadows near my home. My husband and I love travelling and usually visit the US twice a year so find the podcasts about your home country particularly interesting and useful. For now I’m keeping a list of places to visit in the future, South Dakota is the latest addition, thanks for a particularly informative edition. Keep up the good work!
All the best, Susan
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