Santa María Atzompa is a town and municipality located in the Mexican state of Oaxaca, about five km from the state capital of Oaxaca. It is part of the Centro District in the Valles Centrales region.
The town was founded between the 7th and 9th centuries as a satellite of the ancient Zapotec city of Monte Albán. Since its founding, pottery making has been a major economic activity and the town is currently known for its green-glazed pottery. This pottery used to be shipped all over Mexico and exported to the United States but today most of this pottery is sold locally.
Beginning in 2009, there has been excavation at the Atzompa archeological site, leading to the discovery of a 45-meter Mesoamerican ball court, which has been determined to have been on the principal one for Monte Alban.
Today, the town is rustic with the smoke of wood-fired pottery kilns ever present. Poverty has been a concern for the town, but innovations such as the use of lead-free glazing and a communal crafts market have been implemented to improve the craft's prospects.
Santa Maria Atzompa, make the trip out there. It's worth it. Be sure to explore the whole stretch. There's a big artesan market on the right side of the rode, but if you go little bit further and hang a left there are so many more places to see.