Photo Credit: Ron Lach
Your Guide To Oaxaca, Mexico: City Or Coast?
Oaxaca is one of Mexico’s most treasured states. There is absolutely no need to debate that. Not only is Oaxaca considered to be the culinary heart of the country; it is also home to some of the most impressive beaches on the Pacific coast, growing expat communities, and African descendent towns.
Black expats have reason to get excited about their pending move to Oaxaca, not only for the proximity to Blackness while abroad, but also because of the vibe that seems to keep Black travelers in the paradisiacal region. In this guide, Travel Noire will walk you through your options. Whether you’re interested in hiking in the mountains surrounding the city or going slow and barefoot on the coast, here is what to expect.
Oaxaca de Juarez. A vast city nestled in the mountains and bursting with its own magic, Oaxaca is a hub for all things art and unreal food. Oaxaca is forever buzzing with Mexicans and tourists alike who come to the city expecting to experience of one of Mexico’s most famous art cities. Black expats find themselves falling for this city, mostly for the hidden gems and galleries that can be found on every single street in the historic center.
If you’re considering moving to Oaxaca and prefer the city vibes with a heavy hint of Mexican tradition (and all the food, art and conversation that will surely follow), then consider Oaxaca City:
- Art – There is nowhere better to art heaux in all of Mexico. Oaxaca is the go-to place for fancy vibes and New York style art gallery events. You’ll also find some of the most talented tattooists in the region (of course with experience tattooing darker complexions!)
- Food – Foodies will appreciate the affordable city bursting with traditional Oaxaqueño food options.
- The weather – It is relatively fresh in Oaxaca City, with sunny days and cool nights which makes it an ideal location for many expats.
- Low price living and a high quality of life – Oaxaca is known for being one of the most affordable states in Mexico. Rent, food shopping, eating out, and transport will not break the bank, and you’ll have more than enough left over for artsy nights out in the city’s most sought after spots.
- A Travel Noire must-see – Oaxaca City is also a favorite expat destination because of the easy access to nature from the city. If you’re into mountains, then you’ll enjoy a trip to San José del Pacifico, where you’ll stay in cabins in the forest. Interested in waterfalls? Hierve el Agua will blow you away.
See You On The Coast?
The Oaxacan coast is unmatched, and with every bit of bias, we recommend Puerto Escondido. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, there is a reason why Black expats struggle to leave once arriving.
Puerto Escondido, with its precious surf beaches, and endless sands stretching towards lushness, is the epitome of an easy-going beach destination. There is one exception; the energy of Puerto Escondido doesn’t just promote days soaking up the sun and gazing into the vast blue. This is a place full of international expats, full of chances to connect, learn, rest, play and radiate the warmth that characterizes the region. Black expats will not only appreciate the community but also the:
- Variety – Puerto Escondido is for the expat looking for vastness. You’ll find variety in the types of travelers attracted to the region. You’ll find beach vibes as well as fast-city ones. You’ll even find a variety of cuisine from around the world, unlike the more traditional options in Oaxaca City.
- Closeness to Afro-descent towns – Being close to the African descendent towns such as Chacahua or the Chica Costa in general makes for a comfortable and eye-opening experience for Black expats.
- Beach vibes every day – Enough said.
- Laid-back community – This is a coastal beach city, after all. Puerto Escondido is truly one of the most tranquilo places in Oaxaca, so expect the heat of the sun to slow you down enough to notice how everyone here is not too busy for eye-contact, loud greetings, and inviting you to join a game on the beach.
- A Travel Noire must-see – Ocean-lovers will find their hearts full living in Puerto Escondido. Go a step further and book a bio-luminescent tour. Your time in Oaxaca isn’t complete without a magical night in the glowing waters.