Venezuela travel blog by Mark Berman -
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I had heard about 3 special places in Venezuela that produced and sold arts and crafts - Quibor, El Tintorero and El Tocuyo. I decided to visit
one or two of them. I left Carora early in the morning,
it is only a 40min bus ride east on highway 1 to El Tintorero, west from Barquisimeto.
Opens Around 9am
I arrived in El Tintorero at around 9am, the shops were just starting to open. I ate an empanada and had some fruit juice at a stall for
breakfast. El Tintorero has an arched entrance, one side has a guitar and the other, a cello. I noticed a whole bunch of colored murals on the
buildings and took to them with my camera. By the time I was finished photographing the murals, the shops were all open and doing business.
Many Arts and Crafts Shops
I am not personally an arts and crafts freak. But I love to make photos of arty stuff! I wanted to visit a place that was not a big city, somewhere
different. I would love to fill my house with the stuff they have here but it's quite impossible to carry it all around while travelling around
the country. What do they have? Where do I start? Hammocks, wall art and paintings, plant holders, jewelry, dolls, shelf ornaments, all kinds
of wooden products, bags, clothing, toys, musical instruments, religious figures, garden ornaments, bee and honey products, hats, plates and
souvenirs. I spent 3hrs in El Tintorero before taking a shared taxi 10mins to Quibor.
Taxi to Quibor
The arts and crafts center in Quibor was not as
attractive as in El Tintorero, it is more like an outside market right next to a busy intersection. I had a quick wander through but was not
that excited by the place to be honest. There is a restaurant across the road from the market where I had lunch. That was the highlight of
Quibor for me, even if the service was terrible. From Quibor it is another 28kms to El Tocuyo but I didn't visit on this occasion.
To see all
the amazing arts and crafts from El Tintorero and Quibor check out the photos I took. I would definitely recommend a visit to El Tintorero
over Quibor. On the other hand the prices may be lower in Quibor because it is an outside market area as opposed to shops. But the products
were different in each place anyway, depends what you are looking for.
Bus to Barquisimeto
From Quibor I took a bus 40mins to Barquisimeto
, another for 4hrs to
Maracay and another overnight for 10hrs to Ciudad Bolivar. I had actually planned to stay the night in Maracay. I walked around the bus terminal
for 1hr looking for a budget hotel that night, the streets had no lights and all I could find was rent by the hour hotels. I thought 'bugger it'
and killed 2 birds with 1 stone by getting a bus instead to Ciudad Bolivar