various: "Shopping for crafts" Top 5 Page for this destination Panajachel Shopping Tip by toonsarah
Panajachel Shopping: 9 reviews and 11 photos
Panajachel and the surrounding villages are rightly considered among the best places to shop for handicrafts. The high proportion (90%) of Maya living here, and the high numbers of visitors, combine to create a shopping frenzy! Naturally the quality of goods on offer varies, but it is generally good to very good, and with negotiation prices can be kept very reasonable.
What to buy: There’s quite a range on offer even though many of the stalls and shops sell similar goods. Textiles are deservedly one of the favourite purchases and you can get everything from a cheap but pretty scarf (I bought several as gifts) to a hand-woven traditional huipile. Several shops sell paintings in the typical Guatemalan naive style – its bright colours don’t particularly appeal to me but again prices are reasonable if this is your sort of thing. There are hammocks, sun-hats, key rings, bags, wallets and glasses cases galore. In Santiago we saw large colourful hangings, some lovely wood carvings and pretty decorations fashioned from tiny glass beads; in San Antonio there’s a good pottery co-operative.
What to pay: As I said, negotiation aka haggling is the order of the day, although at the same time you need to be conscious that this is how these people make their living and a small discount for you could be a more significant matter to them. Some prices we paid:
~ two small scarves for 70 Q the pair (were quoted as 45 Q each)
~ a large scarf for 50 Q (starting price 80 Q)
~ sun-hat for 40 Q (starting price 45 Q
~ woven glasses case for 20 Q (so cheap I didn’t haggle)
~ glass bead Christmas decorations at 2 for 50 Q (were 30 Q each)
~ glass bead quetzal key-ring for just 5 Q (again, no haggling – and I got a lovely photo of the seller as well!)
The last three purchases were in Santiago Atitlàn.
Theme: Local Craft
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