Some of the country’s finest shopping districts are found in Oaxaca. The city and the surrounding towns are very well known for their handcrafted pottery, weavings, and woodcarvings. Check out old-fashioned street-side shops, rural villages, and sprawling outdoor markets for signature goods. Oaxaca shopping is a pleasurable experience so prepare your pesos.
You can buy Oaxacan crafts throughout Mexico, but the most authentic crafts are found in the colonial city its surrounding towns. They are also less expensive (about 20%-60% less) than the ones sold elsewhere. In general, markets offer better bargains than stores, but the latter boasts a better selection. Higher-end stores even offer international shipping services.
It is a wonderful cultural experience to visit villages for some market browsing. Walking around the ambient cobbled streets and popping into galleries and shops is a also a brilliant idea to enjoy your Oaxacan afternoon. We recommend that you do both.
Oaxaca has two busy markets. The one is located south of the Zócalo, while the newer market, Abastos Market, is 10 blocks west. The advantage of shopping in markets is that you get to buy directly from the artists, learning more about the crafts by talking to the ones who make them. Another advantage is that prices are considerably lower. Spend more time digging as it is part of the fun of Oaxaca shopping.
Shops and galleries
You can find most of the shops and galleries in the area between Zócalo and Santo Domingo. Mujeres Artesanas de las Regiones de Oaxaca is a huge shop where you can high-quality and reasonably priced crafts. Another great shop is Galería Indigo. Located in a restored mansion, it features graphics, paintings, ceramics, and other works made by Oaxacan artists. If you are looking for a hip craft store, then Blackbox is the place to be.
Make the most of your Oaxaca shopping experience by going beyond the city proper. The villages of Arrazola, Etla, Ejutla, La Union, Mihuatlan, Pinotepa Nacional, San Martin Tlacolula, Tlaxiaco, and Zaachila make worthy side trips if you are looking for more authentic Oaxacan crafts. Guelavia and Papalutla are famous for their baskets and the Valley of Teotitlan is best-known for its traditional fine wool rugs.