Oaxaca City – A Colonial Treasure
The beautiful Mexican colonial city of Oaxaca is the capital of the state by the same name. Oaxaca City is located in the Valles Centrales region of Oaxaca State and is the economic, cultural and tourist center of everything that happens within the state. Oaxaca is world renowned for its beauty, cuisine and diversity both in its natural and cultural resources.
Oaxaca City was founded by Aztec warriors around 1486 before the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors who brought the city under the rule of the Spanish Realm officially in 1532. King Carlos the 1st of Spain gave the city the name of Antequera, and this remained unchanged until 1821, whereupon the city received its current name of Oaxaca, and reverted back to a Spanish variation of the original name given to the city by the Aztec warriors who founded it in the 15th century. Oaxaca is a name derived from the name of a tree that grows in the area, the huaje. Oaxaca finally became Oaxaca de Juárez in 1872 when President Benito Juárez, originally of Oaxaca died.
Oaxaca City’s History in a nutshell
Of the many archaeological sites that surround Oaxaca City by far the most impressive is Monte Albán which in pre-Hispanic times was the controlling settlement of the central valleys of Oaxaca, and was well connected with other important Mesoamerican cities of the time. The pre-Hispanic Oaxacan capital of Monte Albán was predominantly under Zapotec control, however a series of turf wars with the neighbouring mixtecs saw the city fall into the hands of the mixtecs. Sometime later the Aztecs arrived in the valley and set up a military stronghold on what is now the Cerro del Fortin. 1520 saw the beginning of another war between the Zapotecs and the Mixtecs, a war which was soon belittled by the arrival of the Spanish. More detailed information on the history of Oaxaca can be found here.
A Map of Oaxaca City
Some Photos of Oaxaca City
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