Bolivia Shopping

When one thinks about Bolivia shopping, immediately the well-known witches market in La Paz comes to mind. Away from the bustle of the sleek and modern facade of La Paz, past the quiet side streets and sun splotched alleyways, Located in the cobblestone streets of the old La Paz district of Calle Linares, are the narrow aisles of the Mercado de Las Brujas, or the Witches Market. Bolivian food, unusual objects, and potions are just a few of the things you can buy here.

As soon as you begin exploring the strange and colorful object and jars of strange powders displayed in these ramshackle stalls, you will see why this is named the witches market. This experience can really be considered Bolivia shopping at its most authentic.

A plethora of strange and the armadillos are supposed to ward off thieves, so this animal can be considered a large and strange good luck charm. It'll be interesting to explain when your bag gets scanned at the airport. The small figurines of embracing couples are to bring you luck in love and hopefully lead to marriage. Another kind of these ceramic couples are to be for improvement of your sex life.

There are two different purposes that the dried llama fetus fills, the one that is seared on a plate with herbs and sweets is for good luck in business, while the regular dried llama fetus is to protect your home. It is widely known fact that most homes in Bolivia have these dried llama fetus interred in the foundations of the building.

Both locals and tourists in La Paz go to the witches market. The stall operators sit patiently and sometimes engage their acquaintances in gossip with visitors, who stop their conversation and watch bemusedly as the tourists ask the requisite questions. Brave the cool morning and wander the market at its best. You can enjoy a breakfast on the go and sample some fresh Bolivia food, and savor the prime stall views. The vendors have plenty of time to tell you what potion does what or simply fill you in on Andean folklore and customs.

Aside from strange objects, the market is a repository for the quickly dying practices of herbal healing that the people here have used for millennia. A whole new world of knowledge will open up to you, and you will realize that there is wisdom here is the Andes that we have no inkling of in our own country. Herbal tinctures as well as aromatic high quality boxed herbs from Brazil add to this unique Bolivia shopping experience. You can also find many of the herbs used for cooking in Bolivia food.

Santa Cruz, Potosi, Sucre and other towns in Bolivia have lesser-known versions of the market at La Paz, but with their own unique twists. A coca leaf reading is one of the things that the locals come here for. Prayers to Pachamama, or the mother earth, is thought to be also useful, and is often included in rituals conducted by these Kallawayas, or medicine-bringers. Locals rely heavily upon these healers and soothsayers for advice and traditional herbal remedies.

The market is a thriving bustling center of Bolivia food and culture, and is increasingly becoming more important to the economy of cities in Bolivia. The vendors in La Paz are happy to see a visitor, and a visit to any one of these markets will put on a smile on both of your faces.

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