The Silvia Market of Colombia

by Brenna Holeman
Silvia Colombia Market 1 Silvia Colombia Market 2 Silvia Colombia Market 3 Silvia Colombia Market 4 Silvia Colombia Market 5 Silvia Colombia Market 6 Silvia Colombia Market 7 Silvia Colombia Market 8 Silvia Colombia Market 9 Silvia Colombia Market 10 Silvia Colombia Market 11 Silvia Colombia Market 12 Silvia Colombia Market 13 Silvia Colombia Market 14 Silvia Colombia Market 15 Silvia Colombia Market 16

Silvia, Colombia

Every Tuesday, there is a large market held in the small town of Silvia, about an hour and a half away from Popayan. As we spent about a week in Popayan, we were able to visit one cold morning in August.

The town itself is comprised of only a few blocks, but near the centre there is a giant warehouse that holds the market every week. We arrived early, around 8am, and took our breakfast inside: sweet bread and hot coffee with salty cheese floating in the cup. We were two of perhaps five or six tourists, and people greeted us and talked to us, treating us like special guests.

The market itself is primarily for fruit and vegetables, and many of the vendors are Guambiano people from the surrounding countryside. Piles and piles of avocados, lulo, mangoes, blackberries, guanabanas and mamoncillos were for sale beside sacks of potatoes, religious trinkets, blocks of vanilla, heavy scarves, and even full goats’ heads. We bought bags of fruit and vegetables, crunchy baguettes, and more of that salty cheese for our lunch back in Popayan.

What made the market, however, was definitely the Guambiano people themselves; there was a joviality in the air, constant laughter, warmth and welcoming. Dressed in blue shawls, black hats, and white beads, we compared jewellery, shared stories. It was a day we couldn’t have planned, but a day that helped solidify our love for Colombia.

For a video Kerri made that day, click here.

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Audrey Bergner October 16, 2012 - 3:48 am

I love the one of the lady checking out your necklace, and I gagged a bit at the one of the sheep’s head…(bleh!)

Megan October 16, 2012 - 8:59 am

wow i definitely see a lot of sheep head here in norway, but usually it is dewooled and ready to be cooked! kind of threw me off.

looks like a great place to go to! wonderful photos!

Agness Walewinder October 16, 2012 - 11:17 am

Sheep’s head…wow! I’ve not seen anything like this even in China. Colombo’s so colourful, but people (apart from you) don’t smile a lot. Is it because you were taking photos of them?

This Battered Suitcase October 16, 2012 - 3:27 pm

Audrey – Thank you! That woman was so nice – I had a great conversation with her in my broken Spanish.

Megan – Yes, it threw me off as well! It really was a wonderful place to visit…

Agness – I found a lot of people smiling, but maybe it depends on where you go!

Christine loves to Travel October 16, 2012 - 5:49 pm

What an amazing day!!!

Jessie October 17, 2012 - 1:01 am

Love all those hats!

That Time We Went to St. Augustín, Colombia - This Battered Suitcase March 27, 2014 - 4:43 pm

[…] from Cartagena to Santa Marta, Taganga, Tayrona, Medellín, Guatape, Salento, Cali, Popayan, and Silvia, our appetite for Colombia was not quite satisfied. One of us read something, or heard something, […]


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