28 June 2012

XII World Congress of the Organization of World Heritage Cities – 19-22 November 2013

Oaxaca, Mexico

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Dear Friends,

Oaxaca de Juárez began its long history 526 years ago, when the first Mexicans founded Huaxyácac and formed the boundaries of what is today’s Historic Centre. The sacred city of Monte Albán is to be found close by as well as the prehistoric caves of Yagul and Mitla, sites inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list.

From its distant origins, the city conserves the magnetism of a prodigious checkerboard: the area of historical monuments which, since then, has been a reservoir of some of the most original architectural assets of Mexico’s artistic and cultural treasure, if not of the continent as a whole. Surrounding this foundation point, there remain tranquil streets, temples, convents and markets that bear testimony to Oaxaca’s history and its ancient cultures.

Oaxaca de Juárez is also the centre of a cultural phenomenon which seldom transpires within our sphere of nations: throughout four centuries, the city has been home to painters who have made their mark on art history both in Mexico and abroad.  

One of the outstanding characteristics that our city offers travellers is its gastronomy, distinguished for its surprising recipes, tastes and exotic ingredients.

Our magical and enchanting city seduces the visitor’s senses with its colonial architecture; its gastronomic culture; its polychrome arts and crafts with their marvellous stone and fabric textures. We shall be waiting for you here, from the 19th to the 22th of November 2013, to celebrate the XII World Congress of the Organization of World Heritage Cities, whose main topic of discussion will be “Heritage cities, Sustainable cities”.

The strategic objective behind this professional and reflective meeting is the combined search for alternatives that will protect, defend, conserve and manage our heritage in accordance with the criteria of sustainability.

You shall be most welcome, all of you, to Oaxaca de Juárez, World Cultural Heritage and cultural essence of Mexico.

C. Luis Ugartechea Begué
Municipal President of Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca, Mexico


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