To someone whose only forays into Mexico consisted of various Baja destinations, Oaxaca was a wonderful surpise. Here was a stately colonial city with European sensibility, an unhurried pace, a rich color pallete, more art galleries per capita than Santa Fe, surrounded by pueblos with unique craft styles, alive with beautiful young people. Great food and fine crafts are to be had for about a third of what Americans are used to paying. We were lucky to catch the city in the middle of preparations for the Day of the Dead, which itself was an unforgetable experience. The sights and tastes of the week are not easily forgotten.

On the streets of Ciudad de Oaxaca

Local delicacy: "Chapulines" (grasshoppers fried with chilis and onions)

Camino Real Hotel courtyard

Monte Alban
Around Oaxaca City
Religious procession in San Bartolo Coyotepec

Alebrijes workshop in San Martin Tilcajete

On the road to San Martin Tilcajete


Day of the Dead celebration

You'd think the Oaxaca City cannot get any more colorful, but around the Day of the Dead it practically bursts with color (as well as smell and taste): the yellow and orange of the flowers for the traditional offerings, the candles, flowers, food on the altars in many homes and shops, the bright red of the devil costumes, the paper banners rippling in the air, the candy skulls and sweet smoke of copal tree...At night, more candles and flowers at the cemetaries, with copal incense and strains of brass bands drifting through the air...

Flower market outside of Mercado Juarez

Flower market scene

!Que guapo!

One of many Day of the Dead processions

Sugar "calaveras"

An altar

Sand carpet in front of the Cathedral


Another sand carpet in front of the Cathedral

Sand carpet at the cemetary

Xoxotlan cemetary

Cemetary scene


Bahias Huatulco

As close to paradise as we have ever been...

Hotel Quinta Real overlooking Tangolunda Bay

Why is this man smiling?

The view from our room

Our five star resort room