Chichicastenango 1/19/03
photos by Lois and Don Porter

On Sunday January 19, we left Panajachel for Chichicastenango, which reportedly has the largest and most famous market in Guatemala. We got there about 9:15, and the first thing we did was arrange for transport back to Antigua. We were able to leave our backpacks at the travel agent, which was great, because the crowds were thick as molasses. We went first to the church. About 2 minutes after we arrived there, we were amazed to find that all the religious icons were being carried out of the church to marimba music, drums, etc.! We had the blind luck to arrive just in time for the San Sebastian celebration. When the procession was done, we climbed the hill of “Pascual Abaj”, a pagan idol. On the way back we stopped at a mask making place (“Moreria”) and the kids of the family demonstrated the dance of the conquistadors. We spent some time wading through the market. We had a great time! The bus left for Antigua at 2:30 PM and made really good time until hitting a bottleneck at Jocotenango about 6 Km outside of Antigua. The traffic just stopped. The driver said they must be having a festival and dancing in the streets. We decided to walk and only a couple of blocks from where we left the van we encountered a bunch of folks dancing in Disney type costumes—mice, monsters, dolls—an assortment of characters. Lois had a couple of laughs dancing with two of them.

page 1 of 2 Next

01-ChurchSteps 02-WatchingProcession 03-PascualShrine 04-ReachingPascual
01-ChurchSteps.jpg         02-WatchingProcession.jpg         03-PascualAbajShrine.jpg         04-ReachingPascualAbaj.jpg        
05-ConquistadorDance1 06-ConquistadorDance2 07-ConquistadorDance3 08-ConquistadorDance4
05-ConquistadorDance1.jpg         06-ConquistadorDance2.jpg         07-ConquistadorDance3.jpg         08-ConquistadorDance4.jpg        
09-ConquistadorDance5 10-ConquistadorDance6 11-Street 12-WomanOf NebajQuiche1
09-ConquistadorDance5.jpg         10-ConquistadorDance6.jpg         11-Street.jpg         12-WomanOf NebajQuiche1.jpg        

Back to Guatemala index