I’m a big fan of markets abroad. There’s not so many back home, at least not outside of London. When you do find them they’re quite often full of clothes you wouldn’t want to wear and Nike knock-offs.
Markets abroad seem to sell everything. La Paz is full of different markets: food, car parts, flowers and even the Witches get their own market!
In the Witches’ market you’ll find all sorts of things ranging from good fortune charms, to powders and foods to make your libido grow and, perhaps the most disturbing, dead baby llamas to bury under your new house for good luck (definitely pretty creepy looking!).
About the Witches’ Market
The Witches’ Market is found between Calle Jiminez and Linares between Sagarnaga and Santa Cruz. It’s impossible to miss the Witches’ Market of La Paz!
The area is a lively tourist spot and dozens of sellers line the streets selling an array of weird things. You can also find the raw ingredients with which the witches use to call upon the spirits.
Among the many items sold at the market are dried llama foetuses that are said to bring both prosperity and good luck, dried frogs used for Aymara rituals, soapstone figurines, aphrodisiac formulas, owl feathers, dried turtles and snakes, herbs, and folk remedies.
If you’re brave enough you can meet with one of the witch doctors that stroll through the market for some fortune telling. You’ll spot them by looking out for the people in dark hats and dresses.
The dried llama foetuses are the most prominent product available at the market. It is believed that the buried llama foetuses keep construction workers safe, but these are only used by poor Bolivians. Wealthy Bolivians usually sacrifice a living llama to Pachamama.