The world famous Saturday crafts market in Otavalo is one of the most well known throughout the Andes. The indigenous weavers from the villages around Otavalo are among the most talented in Ecuador and the Otavaleños, talented at adapting their products to market demands, have won recognition and prosperity on an international level.
Although the Saturday market is the largest and most famous in Ecuador, any day of the week you can shop the labyrinth handicrafts market in the Plaza de Los Ponchos, as well as the numerous wholesale and retail handicrafts shops for exquisitely woven textiles, woolen ponchos, blankets, hats and wall hangings, as well as hand knit sweaters, shawls, and scarves, tagua carved jewelry and even well crafted Andean folk music instruments.
Also on Saturdays, many visitors plan an early morning trip (about 7 am) to the animal market where you see everything from llamas to horses, cows to dogs. Located just outside of town you can visit before the more tourist-oriented crafts market and the local food and housewares markets, which are found nearby.
Otavalo is situated in the Andes two hours north of Quito, at an altitude of 2500 meters, and has a population of about 40,000. Casa Mojanda is just a 10 minute taxi ride from Otavalo on the scenic cobblestone road to the Mojanda Lakes. From Casa Mojanda you may also walk down to Otavalo via the cobblestone road or through the countryside (approximately one hour).