Oaxaca: Travel + Leisure's Favorite City in the World! Exploring the Enchanting Charm of Oaxaca, Mexico and Top 25 List | Yampu Tours

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Oaxaca: Travel + Leisure’s Favorite City in the World! Exploring the Enchanting Charm of Oaxaca, Mexico and Top 25 List


Every year, Travel + Leisure readers eagerly participate in the “World’s Best Awards” survey, casting their votes for their favorite cities, hotels, resorts, and more from around the globe. The results of the 2023 survey have been unveiled, revealing the top 25 favorite cities chosen by these dedicated travelers. While five out of seven continents made appearances on this year’s list, it’s Mexico that truly stole the show. Notably, Oaxaca, Mexico, secured the prestigious first place for the second consecutive year, captivating the hearts of wanderlust-driven readers worldwide.

Oaxaca: A City of Richness and Resilience

Tucked away in the heart of Mexico, Oaxaca emerges as a captivating destination that has left an indelible mark on the souls of those fortunate enough to explore its streets. This year’s T+L readers’ choice proves the city’s unwavering appeal, solidifying its position as the favorite among favorites. Oaxaca is renowned for its culinary delights, particularly its renowned mole and mezcal, which have tantalized the palates of travelers and locals alike. Moreover, the city boasts a vibrant arts and culture scene, with murals and papel de picado adorning the streets, creating a colorful tapestry of traditions and stories.



But what truly sets Oaxaca apart is its warmth and hospitality. Travelers consistently note the welcoming locals, providing a sense of belonging that turns a visit into an immersive experience. The city’s dedication to aesthetics, from its picturesque landscapes to its Renaissance architecture, adds a layer of enchantment that captivates the heart and soul of every visitor. With reader scores averaging an impressive 93.53, Oaxaca’s rise to the top is a testament to its ability to fulfill the desires of travelers seeking authenticity, beauty, and heartwarming experiences.

Top Destinations and Experiences in Oaxaca

While Oaxaca’s culinary treasures and vibrant arts scene contribute to its allure, the city is a treasure trove of destinations and experiences that beckon travelers to explore its rich tapestry. Here are some top attractions and things to do that make Oaxaca an unforgettable destination:

  1. Zócalo: The heart of Oaxaca, the Zócalo is a bustling square surrounded by colonial-era buildings, including the Grand Cathedral of Oaxaca. It’s a perfect place to immerse yourself in the local culture, witness traditional events, and enjoy open-air performances.


  1. Monte Albán: Explore the ancient ruins of Monte Albán, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that was once the capital of the Zapotec civilization. Perched on a hill, the site offers breathtaking views of the surrounding valley.


  1. Mitla: Another archaeological wonder, Mitla features intricate stone mosaics and designs that showcase the craftsmanship of the Zapotec people. The site’s unique architecture and religious significance make it a must-visit.


  1. Oaxacan Cuisine: Indulge in the city’s renowned culinary scene, where mole reigns supreme. Sample different variations of this complex sauce, each with its blend of spices, chilies, and chocolate. Don’t miss the chance to taste mezcal, a traditional agave-based spirit, and explore local markets for fresh ingredients.



  1. Benito Juárez Market: Dive into the vibrant colors and flavors of Oaxacan cuisine at this bustling market. From vibrant produce and traditional textiles to regional snacks and handicrafts, it’s a sensory feast that reflects the city’s diversity.


  1. Oaxacan Arts and Crafts: Wander through the streets and art galleries to witness the city’s thriving arts scene. From colorful murals to intricately designed pottery and textiles, the local craftsmanship is a reflection of Oaxaca’s rich heritage.


  1. Hierve el Agua: Discover a natural wonder in the form of petrified waterfalls at Hierve el Agua. These mineral formations create the illusion of frozen cascades, offering a unique and serene setting for relaxation and exploration.


  1. Day of the Dead Celebrations: If your visit coincides with the iconic Day of the Dead festivities (November 1-2), you’re in for an unforgettable cultural experience. Witness the altars, parades, and traditions that honor departed loved ones.


  1. Cultural Festivals: Throughout the year, Oaxaca hosts a variety of cultural festivals celebrating music, dance, food, and more. The Guelaguetza Festival, held in July, is a highlight, showcasing traditional dances and costumes from different regions of the state.


  1. Textile Workshops: Engage in hands-on experiences by participating in textile workshops where you can learn about the traditional techniques used to create intricate weavings and textiles.

From savoring the exquisite flavors of Oaxacan cuisine to unraveling the mysteries of ancient civilizations, Oaxaca offers a kaleidoscope of experiences that cater to a range of interests. Its warmth, authenticity, and enchanting beauty continue to captivate travelers, ensuring that this beloved Mexican city remains a perennial favorite on the global travel stage.

A Glimpse into the Top 25 List


While Oaxaca undoubtedly steals the spotlight, the T+L readers’ list also showcases an array of other captivating cities that have captured the imaginations of travelers. Here’s a quick look at the remaining cities on the list:


  1. Udaipur, India: With a reader score of 93.33, Udaipur’s beauty and allure have propelled it into the second spot.


  1. Kyoto, Japan: Known for its hidden attractions and rich history, Kyoto earned a reader score of 92.06, securing its place as a captivating cultural hub.
  1. Ubud, Indonesia: This Balinese city surrounded by jungle captivated readers with its scenic beauty and earned a reader score of 91.73.


  1. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico: A visual masterpiece with its art galleries and boutique shops, this Mexican gem garnered a reader score of 91.19.


  1. to 25. Other Cities: The remaining cities, including Mexico City, Tokyo, Istanbul, Bangkok, Mumbai, and many more, each possess a unique allure that resonates with the desires of diverse travelers.


The readers’ choice of these cities reflects a shared passion for exploration, cultural immersion, and the quest for authentic experiences. The annual T+L survey stands as a testament to the power of travel to enrich our lives, broaden our horizons, and connect us to the beauty of the world.

The 2023 Travel + Leisure Readers’ Favorite Cities list showcases the diverse and enchanting destinations that capture the hearts of travelers worldwide. Oaxaca, Mexico, stands as a shining example of a city that consistently delivers on its promises of authenticity, warmth, and beauty, earning it the coveted top spot for the second year in a row. As travelers continue to seek out the world’s best destinations, these beloved cities serve as a reminder of the transformative power of exploration and the universal yearning to discover new horizons.

Join us in discovering the heart and soul of Oaxaca – click now to watch the video and let your imagination take flight!

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