Hostelling International - Paulina Youth Hostel

Trujano 321 esquina Diaz Ordaz, Centro Historico, Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Paulina Youth Hostel
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More about Oaxaca de Juárez


one of the women we helped with a microloanone of the women we helped with a microloan

Cycling pilgrims taking a rest.Cycling pilgrims taking a rest.

The bar at la casa del mezcal.The bar at la casa del mezcal.

The truckThe truck

Forum Posts

December Trip to Oaxaca Planned

by sbblume

My husband & I are going to be in Oaxaca de Juarez the first two weeks of December, 2007. This is to be an exploratory trip in preparation for my retirement in a couple years. What should we plan to see? We'd like to meet some people who have retired there. Anyone interested? We'll have a rental car, is that a good idea? Would like to spend a couple nights here and there, not all in one place but all within hollering distance of the city.

Re: December Trip to Oaxaca Planned

by melosh

In general, I do not recommend renting a car for a brief stay. The risks, potential hassles, and expense are not worth it. It is so easy and cheap to take buses and taxis or to just hire a car with a driver for the days when you want one, I do not see that it makes much sense because the convenience of having your own vehicle means the inconvenience of finding parking, etc. and the strain of driving Mexican roads. (See tips) But if you are planning to have a car in Mexico during retirement, it might be worth the rental just to get part of an idea of how it could be. (It won't clue you into the hassles of importation and licensing.)

I actually have thought that Oaxaca might be a good place for retirement. I do not think the ex-patriot retirement community is too large and the lack of heavy industry means the air is pretty good. I did meet several people at a benefit dinner while visiting one Christmas and they were very happy.

Going before Christmas should give you a more normal impression of the city, but Christmas in Oaxaca is very very special.

You should be aware that during the last year there has been significant social strife in the City and State of Oaxaca. (Over 12 people died during protests and strikes.) You should try to follow the news (San Diego paper online and the International Herald are two pretty good English sources.) between now and your visit so as to be fully informed of any new risks. At this time I would say that you are good to go. bob melosh

Re: December Trip to Oaxaca Planned

by sbblume

Melosh, Thanks for your answer. How much time did you spend in Oaxaca? What time of year? When? Do you have any contacts who live there? ( is ok to reply)

Re: December Trip to Oaxaca Planned

by SpanishTeacherOaxaca

You can meet some of the people who have retired at "Lending Library". There are people from the United States and Canada

Re: December Trip to Oaxaca Planned

by sbblume

I haven't been back to Virtual Tourist in a long, long time so just saw your July posting.

Is the "Lending Library" an actual place in Oaxaca or is it a virtual place on the internet?

We made a contact with a gentleman names Max Uhler who is a retiree from the US living in Oaxaca and we have corresponded extensively. He found us a place to stay while we are there in December. He lives about 5 blocks east of the Zocalo. Where do you live? What is your background?

I am 69 and plan to retire in another year and we think we will move to Oaxaca then. This trip is to explore and see if we really like it there!

My email is: and you can reply there if you like.

Sandy Blume

Travel Tips for Oaxaca de Juárez

Left Luggage / Luggage Storage in Oaxaca

by wavesport

If you arrive in Oaxaca without a hotel reservation, go to the first-class bus terminal and leave your luggage at the terminal's luggage storage service. I can't recall the exact cost, but it is relatively cheap. You can then either walk or take a taxi to the Zocalo area (MX$20-30) and start checking out the nearby hotels / hostels without having to haul your luggage. Likewise, if you have a late flight or bus departure, store your luggage at the first-class bus terminal and spend the day exploring the city.

drinks at La Purisima

by marktynernyc

The views from this terrace of the surrounding mountains and city are wonderful - great place for drinks at sunset or in the evening. The food and restaurant are very good also. On my last night in Oaxaca I had dinner in the courtyard at La Purisima. A blue midnight sky, Orion and a half moon over head, ocher colored walls, mexican guitar music in the background, flavorful food and attentive service made this a wonderful evening.

The best cultural tip that I...

by shdw100

The best cultural tip that I could give is just to wander around the central plaza. There are usually lots of little shops and street vendors that will sell you anything Mexican. It will give you a good feel of what Mexico is like without having to worry about any kind of crime!

Great way to connect with local women + give back!

by earthtravels52

This is a non-profit that is working to fight poverty in Oaxaca, and they run amazing tours out to Teotitlan del Valle - it was one of the very best things I did in my whole three months in Mexico.

It's a mix of responsible tourism plus microfinance, plus a chance to see a culture and life in Oaxaca so much more personally, plus a chance to give back.

We went to meet six women who were applying for microloans - two were weavers who have been making these beautiful rugs since they were children, one was making pinatas and selling them out of her front door of her house while her daughter was selling fruit and flowers there, and one showed us how she makes tortillas over the fire and explained how she knows people she could sell more to, but just needs more money to be able to buy the raw materials to make more.

It was so special to be able to connect with these women and hear about their plans to help their families. At the end of the day, En Via gives 100% of the tour fees as interest-free loans to one of the two groups of women we saw, so it was also wonderful to know that we were contributing directly to helping these women make their plans happen.

You can find out more on their website -

I can't recommend this highly enough to anyone going to Oaxaca!

Not a perfect place for pure...

by jdparis

Not a perfect place for pure holidays... Rather lost. I think there are a lot of other tracks to follow over there. the common point between all is that you can easily meet a drunk guy. Llegada en la cierra mixe, un lugar afuera del mexico conocido


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