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Momostenango, which means “fortified place of many idols,” is a small indigenous town located in the foothills of the Cuchumatanes mountains in the departamento of Totonicapán. A very old town, it is mentioned in the Popol Vuh (Sort of like a bible for the Maya) by its old name, Chuvá Tzac, as well as in some other older texts. The town is mostly indigenous, and traditional Maya religions are still practiced in Momostenango, which still unofficially adheres to a 260-day calendar that dates back to before the arrival of the Europeans.

Most visitors to Momostenango are there to shop for the warm, heavy woolen goods (especially blankets) that are produced and sold there. The best day to visit is Sunday, when the market takes over the main squares of the town. There is also a hot springs outside of town. Tourist facilities such as hotels and restaurants are limited, but do exist. Buses leave regularly from Xela (Quetzaltenango) and pass through San Francisco el Alto.


Other places nearby Momostenango: San Mateo Ixtatan, Totonicapán , Nentón, Todos Santos Cuchumatan, Quetzaltenango , Cuatro Caminos, Huehuetenango, Barillas, San Mateo Ixtatán and La Mesilla.

By Christopher Minster
I am a writer and editor at V!VA Travel guides here in Quito, where I specialize in adding quality content to the site and also in spooky things like...
16 Oct 2007

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