Otavalo

Otavalo, Ecuador, was my absolute FAVORITE place on our trip so far.  It was just indescribably cool.  The main attraction in Otavalo is the massive Saturday crafts market–the biggest in South America!  Tons of traditionally-attired Quechua locals take over the streets of the whole town center, selling beautiful artwork, handicrafts, livestock, clothing, anything you can imagine!  We also LOVED the food market, and all the great but cheap restaurants around town.  In general, Otavalo struck me as a excellent place to chill and enjoy a small-town atmosphere, while simultaneously soaking up indigenous Ecuadorian culture in a beautiful environment!  I wish we could have stayed longer.  Really though, the pictures have to do the talking!

Indigenous produce sellers in the food market.
Everything is so COLORFUL in Otavalo!
These fried mashed potato cakes are the best ever!!! Served with mystery meat, salad, and salsa! $1 per plate.
The indigenous people of Otavalo are famous for their awesome felt hats. I kind of wanted this one, but didn't want to pack it for 8 more months!
The Saturday market is torture for a jewelry-lover on a budget like me!
Need a snack while shopping? How about some snails??
Beautiful fabrics.
This woman made Zach's awesome poncho, our first souvenir of the whole trip!
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