Oaxaca Mile in Our Shoes: Our Favorite Finds in Mexico’s Southern State

Hola! We have recently returned from Oaxaca, Mexico, where we met with our artisan partners in the area. As with every visit, we were ready to return before our flight home even hit the tarmac. Since so many of you have asked us where we stay on our travels, today we are going to share some of our favorite stops and shops in Oaxaca.

The capital city of the Southern Mexican state of the same name (pronounced Wah-ha-ka) has gained admirers for its inventive cuisine, cultural offerings and handmade artisan products.

On a tip from our local friend, we checked into the luxe Hotel Azul in the historic downtown district. Our love of this locale lies in the details! Every nook in this 19th century building (see above) is curated, featuring decor by Mexican artisans. Contemporary furnishings blend with local culture for a highly stylized and comfortable stay. Plus, we’re seriously in love with the turquoise tile across the front desk.

With our tummies growling, our first order of business was to check out what many say is the best cuisine in Mexico. (After much research, we would like to formally confirm that this rumor checks out!)

Our food journey started with Itanoni, a simple, reasonably-priced spot for all things corn, in an area just North of downtown. They cook nearly everything right in front of you with locally grown and organic ingredients. The restaurant is known for tamales and tetelas, which are a triangle of tortilla stuffed with things like beans, cheese, salsa, veggies, or meat. Speaking of tetelas, we’re still drooling over the mushroom and cream filled version. So good.

Fueled up, we ventured south to explore the 20 de Noviembre mercado where we found an endless supply of gorgeous handmade palm baskets, hand embroidered clothing and freshly-made balls of local quesillo cheese.

Meridian | Textile Museum of Oaxaca
An exhibition of traditional huipiles is on display in the Textile Museum of Oaxaca.

We stocked up and then we trekked to the Textile Museum of Oaxaca to explore their lovely space and learn more about the craft made by our incredible artisan partners in the area. No stop to a museum is complete without a visit to the gift shop. This one did not disappoint! We always find so much inspo at museum gift shops! Do you?

We weren’t yet tired of shopping (honestly, it really takes a lot for us to reach our shopping limit!), so we continued to Los Baules de Juana Cata, a specialty textile shop on Macedonio Alcalá. Their handmade, traditional pieces are a must-see for any textile lover. The shop is dedicated to preserving the weaving and sewing crafts. They work directly with artisans in local communities to produce extremely fine and well-made rebozos, or shawls, embroidered huipiles, and other traditional garments. We love finding like-minded boutiques on our travels, and this one is a must-see on every visit.

Meridian | Las Danzantes in Oaxaca, Mexico
We take a peek overlooking the 16th Century colonial space that houses Las Danzantes.

An early dinner was calling to us, so on a whim we stopped in to Las Danzantes. It did not disappoint. The contemporary fusion menu had a variety of offerings (including some pastas for the less adventurous in our crowd). Everyone left full and happy!

Meridian | Teotitlan del Valle
The view from the front yard of our artisan family’s compound in Teotitlan del Valle.

The rest of our trip was left to explore the surrounding pueblos (villages) to meet with our artisan partners and source new pieces. We’re excited to feature some traditionally woven and dyed pieces from the region later this year. Consider this your first hint at our upcoming collection!

With every visit, we fall in love with Oaxaca a little more. Have you been to Oaxaca? We’d love to hear your favorite spots! Let us know below.

Meridian | Oaxacan Heritage
The people of Oaxaca proudly pay homage to their heritage with an ongoing series of local festivities.

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Meridian | Handwoven Cotton Throw Blanket - Handmade in Mexico
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