No visitor should come to Chichicastenango without stopping to witness the weekly market. The town becomes a different place on Sundays and Thursdays, when the usually-quiet highland settlement is transformed into a colorful parade of sound and light. There are a lot of wonderful things to buy for your home and your loved ones (and a fair bit of tacky junk, too). Just as impressive as the wares are the people who come from all around to sell them; the market is a brilliant display of traditional dress from the various town in the region. Indeed, there has been a market held here for thousands of years.
Today youâ€™ll find a mix of people, from serious traders, groups of weavers and tourists on day-trips from Antigua to buyers for chic European stores. To make the most of your day, make sure you are at Chichi early. With all the extra traffic, the townâ€™s narrow streets become blocked, a situation complicated by a confusing one-way system. The market also starts to get busy after 10 a.m., once the daytrippers arrive from Antigua, so shopping is easier early in the morning. Bargains are easiest to find early in the morning or late in the day, but inspect whatever you're buying to make sure you aren't getting bad deal.
The day-trip shuttle buses from Antigua arrive about 10 a.m. and leave again about 4 p.m. Shuttles going to Panajachel also make a stop here on market days, so you can pick up a few good
Fruits and vegetables, as well as hot food, are also on sale, so you can grab a snack anytime, or take a break at one of the cafĂ©s nearby. As always, take care of your personal belongings.
Relative price: Budget
Travel Skills: beginner/easy.
Born and raised in Yorkshire, England, Jo is currently working as a freelance travel writer in Latin America. With degrees in...