Day 129: Otavalo, Ecuador
To say the Otavalo Market is large is a massive understatement; it is a monstrosity that stretches several blocks and seems unending. Each Saturday the local indigenous people flock to Otavalo to sell their goods to tourists. Stalls begin setting up around 7am and remain throughout the day.
Wisely we decided to walk around first to take inventory of what we wanted and get an understanding of prices. While many of the vendors sell identical goods, the prices vary drastically. In one case, a necklace with an Incan engraving was priced at $35 from one vendor and $12 at another, and that was before haggling.
Once we collected a wish list and our ideal price we loaded up on scarves, bracelets and knit goods. After 3 hours my sister, Ryan, had enough and decided to go back to the hostel. The bargain shoppers that we are, my mother and I forged on wanting to buy a few more scarves.
But before we could even think of haggling we headed to the food stall area for lunch. Each stall only sells one thing for lunch and while eating chicken again was tempting we decided on fried tilapia with fresh plum juice. Eating fish with its head on may not be for everyone (i.e. Ryan) but it was delicious, surprisingly moist and only $2
Finally after realizing we had enough scarves and bracelets for every possible gift ocassion in 2010 and early 2011 we realized we had purchased enough and it was time to call it quits.