Witches Market, La Paz, Bolivia


Known locally as the Mercado de Hechiceria or Mercado de las Brujas, the Witches’ Market in La Paz is packed with shops selling goods used in local Aymara rituals, like llama fetuses (often hanging from shop doors and windows), dried frogs, soapstone amulets, herbal remedies, vials of aphrodisiac solutions and more. The llama features are buried under every new construction in Bolivia (along with an assortment of other items, though wealthier Bolivians are expected to sacrifice a live llama) as an offering of faith to the earth goddess Pachamama. The Witches’ Market is located in one of the busiest parts of La Paz and has a bit of a festive air about it; you’ll also find traditional shops, restaurants and bars on the street, and may run into an authentic yatiri, or Witch Doctor (look out for their black hats and bulbous pouches of cocoa) who may tell your fortune for a few Bolivianos.

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