Dec 8, 2017

Indigenous Thursday market in Guamote, Ecuador, 12 October 2017

The canton of Guamote is the most traditional region in Ecuador. 95% of the population is Indigenous (while in the whole of Ecuador it is only 25%). Guamote itself has about 5,000 inhabitants, but in the mountains surrounding Guamote another 40,000 people live in small communities. The greatest asset of Guamote is the weekly indigenous market, one of the biggest and most traditional markets in South America. Every Thursday the people from the communities come to Guamote to sell their fruit, sheep, pigs, guinea pigs, cows, hats, clothing,… Far away from all tourist traps, this is a market by and for indigenous people, one of the most authentic things you can see in Ecuador, and more than that, something you can really experience. This market is an adventure for all your senses, a chaos of smells, colors, sounds and impressions; and smiling and kind faces everywhere. This is the strength of Guamote: its people. The sincerity and friendliness of the people here is impressive. Despite of the big poverty that still exists here, people are very grateful and optimistic. The Guamote market possesses the true flavour of Ecuadorian markets and it's indigenous people in their colourful traditional clothing.
On the way to the market
Cash is needed
Not everyone is just impressed with the bargains
Buy bananas
Grains and beans for sale
The white round hats are from the time before the Spaniards introduced the European (?) hats
The two young ladies (and the baby!) had spotted that they were photographed
Delicious sheep heads
And an equally beautiful pig head
A pig as a pet
Marked ladies also needs food and drink
The railroad tracks were also included in the market
And you could also buy very fresh goat's milk
A swindler tries to get its share of revenue. Not everyone seems to be equally impressed with his creative claims
On the way home with all the experiences and purchases