Templo de Santo Domingo

#2 in Best Things To Do in Oaxaca
Templo de Santo Domingo picture
javarman3/Getty Images

Key Info

Calle de Macedonio Alcalá s/n, Centro

Price & Hours

Free

Details

Churches/Religious Sites, Sightseeing, Free Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
4.6scorecard
  • 5.0Value
  • 4.5Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

Dating back to 1555, the Templo de Santo Domingo acted as a convent and church before being used as military barracks in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, the convent portion of the building contains the Santo Domingo Cultural Center's Museo de las Culturas de Oaxaca and botanical garden. But the real feast for the eyes is the church itself, which is outfitted in baroque design, applied in gold leaf and other rich materials. And don't forget to look up: The domed ceiling is covered in medallions featuring Catholic martyrs. 

Even visitors who have traveled extensively and seen many of the world's most beautiful churches say the Templo de Santo Domingo wins the prize. The ceiling, they say, is unparalleled. 

Templo de Santo Domingo is open to visitors from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 to 7:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday. On Sundays, it's open from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m. You'll find it about a 10-minute walk north of the Zócalo. For a scenic route, take the Andador de Macedonia Alcala pedestrian walkway. For more information, check out Visit Mexico's website

See all Hotels in Oaxaca »

More Best Things To Do in Oaxaca

The Zócalo1 of 6
Museo de las Culturas de Oaxaca2 of 6
Type
Time to Spend
#1 The Zócalo

Oaxaca's main square – formally referred to as the Plaza de la Constitución de Oaxaca, but colloquially called the Zócalo – is a must-see. Skirted by cafes and eateries and bounded by the Palacio de Gobierno (the State Government Palace) on its south side, the Zócalo is a prime spot for people-watching, picking up a souvenir or two and watching day fade into vibrant night. Thanks to its leafy landscaping and many trees, it's also a relaxing place to cool off in the shade. Plus, the Mercado Benito Juárez sits just minutes from the square. 

Recent visitors gushed about the Zócalo, saying it's a nice spot for an afternoon coffee or an evening margarita. Others suggested visiting at night when the Zócalo fills with live music. You'll find the Zócalo in the heart of Oaxaca; it is free to enjoy at all hours of the day (though businesses operate on their own hours). For more information, check out Visit Mexico's website.

Read more
Darryl Leniuk/Getty Images
See full list of Best Things To Do in Oaxaca »

Explore More of Oaxaca

When purchasing from our site, we may earn commissions. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.

Recommended

America's 15 Coolest Ghost Towns to Visit

From Kentucky to California, the U.S. is filled with eerie abandoned cities.

Lyn MettlerAugust 22, 2019

The 7 Best New Orleans Plantation Tours

Learn about the Big Easy's history through one of these daytrips.

Holly JohnsonAugust 21, 2019

22 Top Sonoma Wineries to Visit

Sip world-class wines while enjoying vineyard and mountain views.

Gwen PratesiAugust 19, 2019

30 Beautiful Caribbean Islands to Visit

It's time to plan your next tropical getaway.

Holly JohnsonAugust 8, 2019

The Best Travel Rewards Programs for 2019-20

See which airline and hotel loyalty programs come out on top.

Erin ShieldsAugust 6, 2019

20 Surprising Ways to Earn Loyalty Program Points or Miles

Branch out beyond hotel stays and flights to maximize your earnings.

Christine SmithAugust 6, 2019

The 12 Best Cancun Tours

These excursions will show you what lies beyond the city's bright beaches.

Lyn MettlerJuly 26, 2019

Traveling With Toddlers: 16 Tips to Make Your Vacation Go Smoothly

These expert travel hacks guarantee a happy trip for the whole family.

Kyle McCarthyJuly 25, 2019

The 11 Best New Orleans Ghost Tours

Hear chilling tales of the city's paranormal activity on one of these guided tours.

Kim Foley MacKinnonJuly 25, 2019

The 10 Best Seattle Boat Tours

Take in the Emerald City's top sights from the water.

Kim Foley MacKinnonJuly 24, 2019