Ecuador travel blog by Mark Berman -
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I spent the night in Latacunga and took a taxi at around 7:30am to Pujili which took 15mins and cost $5USD. It was a Wednesday which was lucky
because Pujili's market days are Wednesdays and Sundays. I hadn't planned to see the markets especially, more to have a look around town because
I was going to nearby Saquisili later that day for their big Thursday market. Market tours are available!
Township and Stone Church
I started out at the plaza where the stone church and other
well-kept buildings are located. From here I explored and found a small market called Mercado Rosalino Ruiz Arroyo opposite a monument of an
indigenous woman sitting cross-legged, this is probably Rosalino! I made my way to the pink and white church clock tower that I could see back
beside the plaza. This turned out to be the government buildings and it's possible to go inside and have a look, it's very cool.
Inside the Government Buildings
entrance is a beautiful patio with gardens, fountains and large murals of important local people, it's called the Jardin de Illustres Pujilenses.
The people included are of religion, politics, justice, independence, music, journalism and war. On the other side of the gardens are a dozen or
so life-size wooden figures playing musical instruments. There are also many information boards on the walls showing the culture and traditions
of the area. It's quite a sight and possibly the best in town apart from or including the markets!
Breakfast at the Central Markets
It was time now for me to eat some breakfast
and the best place to find that is at the Central Markets, this is the big market in Pujili. The most popular local meal in Pujili, Latacunga
and other places in this area of Ecuador is this (one that I have eaten many times because it's so delicious) - fried mashed pototoes with fried egg
on top with meat and salad! They serve it in the markets and restaurants in town too. You can also have soup but the chicken soup is never good
in markets early in the morning because the meat hasn't cooked properly, trust me! Or, you can have a plate of rice with meat etc.
Indigenous Come From Far
As usual the
market has all kinds of stuff for sale - fruit and veg, household things, big blocks of sugar, fish that comes overnight from the coast and of
course other meats. This market is almost totally indigenous and draws people from the surrounding villages and towns. The quality of products
like clothing at markets like this are always much higher than in city shops.
Staircase to the Lookout
The town doesn't have a lot more to see but at the back
of Pujili on the hill is a huge colored staircase that you can climb up for amazing views of the town and area.
Sights Along the Road
From the market I decided to walk
a couple of kms out of town towards the main highway to see what I could find along the way. I walked past a guinea pig restaurant, a gold statue
and park, a few interesting murals and the monument of 3 carnival figures called Al Danzante (The Dancer). Then I noticed some ceramics being made
from outside a house so I walked in and had a look and took a few photos. I walked until I got to the big monument of 3 people at the junction
near the town of La Victoria (another town of ceramics and pottery, at 3008 metres). This is a monument of a woman making ceramics, a man doing pottery
and another man squishing clay with his feet. I knew of the monuments along this road from having passed through Pujili a few years earlier on my way
to Quilotoa Lagoon
- I enjoyed having a look around Pujili this time.
20mins to Saquisili
From the monument I waved down a bus and headed back
(20mins) and got my things from the hotel and took a taxi to Saquisili
for a couple of nights (20mins, $5USD).