Monte Alban is a Zapotec UNESCO heritage site located about 30 minutes outside of Oaxaca. It first came into being around the time of Christ and flourished until about 900 AD when like many other Central American centres it was abandoned by its inhabitants, in this case the Zapotec people.
We spent a couple of hours wandering the ruins with an excellent local guide who offered us glimpses into another time.
The location of Monte Alban is stunning – high on a plateau overlooking the city of Oaxaca and the entire valley.
Some stairways were present but nothing like the marathon climbs I encountered at Palenque and Tikal. Lovely flowering trees and a few swallow tail butterflies lined our path up the hillside to the ruins.
Once back in the city I headed for a textile cooperative located a few blocks from the hotel where some gorgeous handmade clay dinnerware had caught my eye the day before. I think I may need another suitcase for the trip home………
Our day finished with a magicial evening visiting and shopping at a local food market with a well known Oaxacan chef, attending a cooking class at his home in a stunning reproduction of a late 18thC kitchen and enjoying what we made at the dinner table. Mole Coloraditio, Piccadillo and Sopa Azteca completed a memorable meal under the stars
The continuing preparation of Oaxaca for tomorrow nights cementary and altar vigils added immeasurably to our time in the city this evening.