For travelers who appreciate folk art and crafts, there are a number of towns outside Oaxaca where artisans create beautiful pieces following age-old techniques. San Bartolo Coyotepec is a small Zapotec community just eight miles from Oaxaca. It is most famous for its prized black pottery, formed by hand using techniques that are believed to date back at least 2,000 years. While you are there, take a look at the city’s remarkable Baroque church, constructed in the 18th century by Dominican friars.
Continue on to San Martín Tilcajete, another Zapotec town, famous for its alebrijes, wooden carvings of fantastic, multicolored animals. The itinerary to Oaxaca created by Katie Cadar of TravelStore, a member of the AFAR Travel Advisory Council, includes a visit to the studio of Jacopo and María Angeles, two of the most famous artists creating these colorful sculptures.
Find more inspiration for an adventure south of the border in the itineraries at target=“_blank”>AFAR Journeys.