Daylight fades in Oaxaca's historic centre

Oaxaca's historic city center is a photographer's dream. Colourfully painted Spanish colonial buildings and churches line the narrow stone streets.

Like Mexico City and Puebla, it's compact enough to walk, yet it can take days to fully appreciate all the details and nuances. One need only pick a direction, and wander, eyes wide open, to find interesting angles.

The centre, along with the nearby archaeological site of Monte Albán, was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.

Landmarks not to miss include the former monastery of Santo Domingo, with its gilded interior, the adjacent Cultural Museum of Oaxaca next door, which features a fabulous turquoise-covered human skull, and Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption, located in the Zocalo (main plaza).

Beyond the architecture, Oaxaca is also known for its typical Mexican food, including moles, chocolate, mezcal, and fried insects, which can be picked up for cheap at the local market.

Even the souvenir shops feature colourful designs
Beautiful wooden doorways add texture to building facades.
La Casa de la Abuela restaurant offers delicious moles.
An outdoor patio at La Catedral restaurant.
The temple and former monastery of Santo Domingo.
View of Santo Domingo from the adjacent Oaxaca Cultural Museum.
The interior of Santo Domingo glows with gold paint.
The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption in the main plaza.
A small church in central Oaxaca.