Shopping worlds

Whether you want to buy some souvenirs like a tourist or buy some shoes, toys or food: shopping is different in Nicaragua and it mostly happens at markets outside. A good place to learn about this is Masaya where they have two markets, one for tourists and one for locals. But first you’ll have to find them in this confusing and busy city known for the artisan production of hammocks.

Behind the walls of the old market place you’ll discover the Mercado de Artesanías (at Calle del Mercado / Avenida del Progreso). Different stands offer souvenirs and artisan work in a calm setting. The products have been mostly produced in the Masaya region and in other parts of Nicaragua, but you’ll also see that most of the booths sell the same products. The market place also offers food in a cafeteria and by sellers walking around as well as folk shows from time to time.

Mercado Municipal, Masaya
Mercado Municipal, Masaya

The real experience is the Mercado Municipal which you can find 700 meters east of the tourist market (just follow the Calle del Mercado to the east; after crossing an open water channel you’ll see it on the right). There you’ll get everything, from clothes and shoes to electronics and food. The Mercado Municipal offers more than a European shopping mall, but it is also more chaotic for a foreigner than the Grand Bazaar of Istanbul. It is narrow and crowded – but you won’t leave with empty bags.

Mercado de Artesanías
Mercado Municipal

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