Oaxaca (pronounced "wa-hukka") is a beautiful city, but unfortunately, I only left myself one day to see it. I don't know why Oaxaca is listed by DFAT as a dangerous city, or why it's reported to be a poverty-stricken or a dirty city, because it is none of these things. It has a beautiful historic centre, great markets, and really good food. All I can say to you, Oaxaca, is this: sorry, and I hope I can see you properly next time.
One of the avenidas lining the Oaxaca zócalo.
This is Oaxaca's biggest market area, and exploring everything inside it is quite an experience. The markets are large, varied, and easy to get lost in. The more tame areas sell bags, music, kitchenware, and clothing. Further in, you can find the fruit and vegetables, the live chickens, and the cooked food stands. Venture in as deep as you can, and you'll find the really strange stuff: whole dead chickens, still with heads and feet on; piles of dead fish staring up at you; and of course, the famous fried grasshoppers of Oaxaca.
Seems like I'm losing my knack for finding good hostels, because this place was dull as batpoo. Very nice building and all, but hardly any kind of common hangout area, and almost nobody else around to meet and do stuff with. The best word to describe this place would be: sterile. Sorry, Lonely Planet, but you've let me down again. Maybe the ones further down the list for each city are the better ones. Anyway, next time I come to Oaxaca, I'm staying somewhere else.