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Top Bolivia

Shopping - Shopping Jesuit Missions - Bolivia

Visiting the Chiquitania gives you the perfect opportunity to pick up some unique local handicrafts, including carvings, ceramics and weavings. Listed below are some of the main stores and workshops in the area.

San Ignacio: There are many artisan stores and workshops to choose from in San Ignacio. Taller de Artesanos Hermanos Guasase (Avienda Obispo Rosenhammer, near Calle Cochabamba, Tel: 3-962-2319) is a highly professional outfit who produce large furniture pieces as well as smaller ornaments like animal figurines and candelabras. The brothers have been carving since their youth and can produce pieces per spec. It’s all made from FSC certified wood.

Armando Landivar at Taller de Artesanos Landívar (Calle Bolívar and Avenida Heroes del Chaco, Tel: 3-962 2530) also comes highly recommended and was responsible for the beautiful carvings on the pillars outside La Misión Hotel. Taller Ghandi also produces wood carvings.

Grupo de Telares Tipoy (Calle Eduardo Zilker near Avenida La Americas, Cel: 7606-4696) create beautiful weavings using comb looms while Asociación de Tejedores Toborochi (Calle Comercio and Calle La Paz, Cel: 7602 1726) have a selection of embroidery, macramé and weavings. Artesanías San Ignacio (Calle La Paz, Tel: 3-962-2214) have a similar range of handicrafts.

The Escuela Feminina Granja Hogar (Calle Carmen Toledo near Calle La Paz, Tel: 3-962-2046) is a women’s craft school that offers hammocks, weavings and ceramics of a very high quality. Taller Sutuiniquiña (Comunidad San Rafaelito, on the road to San Miguel) is also a good place to buy ceramics.

The Asociación de Productores de Café Biológico MINGA (Tel: 3-962-2156) is an association of local coffee growers that produce organic coffee. Here you can buy the produce as well as having a look at the processing plant. The Asociación de Apicultores (Cel: 7635-2098) sells fresh honey and wax candles.

San José de Chiquitos: Your most unique purchase in San José de Chiquitos will be one of the famous abuelo masks, used in many of the traditional celebrations. The Asociación de Artesanos Chiquitos (just off the main plaza, 3-972-2305) has a good selection and also sells other carvings and fabrics, and the Taller de Artesanías ARTECHI is another good place for carvings.

Artesanías San José (plaza principal) sells hammocks hand-woven in a local Ayoreo community and Artesanías Pitágoras has bags, canes and carvings.You can also pick up some handicrafts at the Casa de la Cultura.

Concepción: The shop in front of Museo Misional (plaza principal, Tel: 3-964-3159) sells wood carvings and weavings. The Hans Roth Centro Kopling (just off main plaza) is a workshop where you can observe carvings being made. They also sell painted wood carvings and replicas of the angel figurines that are prominent in the Jesuit churches.

Taller IBA (plaza principal) sells traditional linen Chiquitania shirts and dresses, with distinctive colorful embroidery. They also have bags, tablecloths, children’s clothing and hammocks, and can do to-order blouses in less than a day. Artesanías Chiquitanas, also on the main plaza, has a great selection of handicrafts including carved frames and ornate boxes, Jesuit-style angels, statues, palm-leaf weavings, hammocks, bags and larger wall monuments. Just knock if it looks shut – the owner lives on the premises.

At the Talleres de Hans Roth, behind the Cathedral, you can watch the workshops in action and buy carvings that have been produced there. Taller de Artesanías Ametauna, at the back of the Alcadía building next to the Tourist Information, produces and sells textiles.

San Xavier: The Feria Productiva San Xavier, on the main plaza, sells wood carvings, ceramics, weavings and other artisan products. The shop next door to Posada Tiluchi (plaza principal) sells ceramics, weavings and jewelry. There’s also a shop next to the church that sells handicrafts. Three blocks from the main plaza you’ll find an artisan cheese shop where you can sample some local cheese.

The smaller missions: You can find some excellent quality wood carvings in the smaller missions. San Miguel has a number of good artisan stores selling wood carvings, including the church store, Taller Bolivia and Centro Artesanal de San Miguel (on the road towards San Ignacio, Cel: 7630-4417). There is also a workshop in San Rafael, Asociación de Carpintero ASACAR, which produces furniture and carvings, and a small artisan shop on the plaza in Santa Ana de Velasco.


01 Feb 2012

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