Mercado de Las Brujas
Spend a few hours down at the Witches Market in La Paz where you will find all manner of strange and wonderful things.
Plenty to see here
Apart from the variety of interesting amulets and medicines this is also a good place to look for alpaca products, if it’s an alpaca wool jumper or hat you are after, prices at the Witches Market are good.
Colourful products and colourful people
You’ll see local women in traditional dress minding their stalls, people from all walks of life shopping for good luck charms; owls represent wisdom, condors safe travel and tortoises represent good health to name a few. If you’re game you can have your fortune read with cocoa leaves.
From Alpacas to Amulets
There are many, many things on sale at the Witches Market. One unusual item you will see hanging in many shop doorways are dried llama foetuses. Whilst this may seem unusual to us, as with everything on sale here there is a tradition or belief associated with it. In this case it is believed that if you bury the foetus in the foundations of a newly built house it will bring good fortune and ward off evil spirits. The market is a great place to find unusual gifts to take home though perhaps this and llama toenails (see photo) are not one of them.
You will come across a variety of amulets, wax figures etc. These items all have a purpose and are important to Bolivians and their traditional beliefs, so whilst things may seem a little strange to you, treat it all with respect, it’s a privilege to be allowed to shop here.