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Marché de Guamote

Marché de Guamote (Ecuador)

Practical information on Marché de Guamote

  • Encounters with locals
  • Off the beaten track
4 / 5 - 2 reviews
How to get there
50 kilometres from Riobamba by road
When to go
All year round
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Marché de Guamote

Seasoned Traveller
75 written opinions

Guamote market is every Thursday morning throughout the town centre. People from all over the region, and sometimes from even further away, go to it in order to buy and sell all sorts of things.

My suggestion:
Try to get there the day before so you can enjoy the atmosphere as soon as the sun comes up on Thursday morning. And don't forget to try the cheese empanadas sold along the railway line, they are deep fried, lightly sugar coated and delicious!
My review

Although it's pretty quiet the rest of the time, on market day Guamote is really lively! People from all around go there to sell and buy all sorts of things: animals, vegetables, clothes, crafts, electronics...

I had been at Guamote for several days and I didn't recognise the place it was so crowded! Thursday is also the day when the train from Quito to Guayaquil comes through and people leave it to the last minute to get off the railway as the train comes into the station right in the middle of the village.

Like most Ecuadorian markets, every street and square specialises in something: here there are animals, there jewellery, and over there cleaning's sometimes difficult to get down the small streets! Lots of activity, lots of negotiation and the noise of the animals. Unlike Otavalo there are very few tourists here, in brief, it's a good market for meeting the locals!

What fate awaits the guinea pigs at Guamote market?
Julie Olagnol Seasoned Traveller
145 written opinions

A very traditional and typically Ecuadorian market is held every Thursday morning in Guamote, not far from the train station.

My suggestion:
If you can, try to visit Guamote when the market is taking place and spend a few hours here.
My review

The Andes tourist train isn't the only thing Guamote has to offer. There is also a colourful market held here each Thursday.

When I visited Ecuador,, the market in Guamote was as much traditional and authentic as it was tourist-oriented. It's probably since become just as popular with gringos as the held on Saturday mornings in Otavalo, in the North. Despite all this, however, visiting a market in Ecuador is still a unique experience.

As in Otavalo, you don't just find local arts and craft products in Guamote. Indigenous Andeans come here to sell livestock, cereals, fruits and vegetables. The sight of the female heads of the families with their litters of piglets on leads is a wonderful spectacle. Guinea pigs, calves, cows: everything gets traded and sold amidst a sea of red ponchos.


A female market trader
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