Zaachila Archaeological Zones -- Central Valley

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Zaachila was the last of the Zapotec capital following the fall of Monte Alban. The site flourished from 1100-1521 AD. Toward the end, Zaachila was conquered by Mixtecs, who occupied it until the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors. The name "Zaachila" is derived from the term "House of Zaachila", a reference to the pre-Colombian Zapotec king Zaachila Yoo.

arc61.jpg - 48,77 K The site is part of the contemporary town of Zaachila, where one can still observed pre-Hispanic traditions and customs, and attend the famous tianguis held each Thursday.

The archaeological zone has one been partially excavated and includes a large man-made pyramid and a series of mounds. Mound A contains four tombs; Tomb 1 and Tomb 2 are the most outstanding of these.

Tomb 1 The entrance to Tomb 1 is decorated with feline heads. The interior contains seven stucco figures. Six are arranged as pairs along the central walls. In the antechamber are representations of owls and two people with the dates "5 Flower" and "9 Flower". At the rear is a human figure covered by a tortoise shell and serpent headdress. The tomb contains the remains of 11 people, and ceramics of Mixtec style that date to the Monte Alban V period.

Tomb 2 consists of a single, undecorated room. The tomb contains rich offerings, including jewelry and objects of gold and precious stone.


The site of Zaachila is located in the town of Zaachila, which lies 15 Km. southeast of Oaxaca City. Approximate travel time is 25 minutes.