After your hotel pickup, a friendly guide will take you sightseeing to visit Gualaceo and Chordeleg, two of the most charming villages surrounding Cuenca. These towns are well-known for their traditional handicrafts: macanas (shawls) made of alpaca wool, filigree jewelry, pottery, miniature ceramics, Panama hats, and more.
On the way, we will first stop at the small town of San Bartolome. Craftsmen here have been creating handmade guitars for generations. We’ll visit a local workshop to observe the process of making this instrument.
Next we will head to Chordeleg, famous for its silversmiths and jewelry shops that line the streets and main plaza. We will visit a workshop to observe an artisan making fabulous filigree creations out of silver and gold. Afterwards you’ll have time to shop around and check out the local jewelry and crafts. You’ll also have a chance to watch artisans weaving ‘Panama’ hats and other items made of toquilla straw.
Our tour continues to Gualaceo to admire the vivid, bright colors of its market and the interesting clothing worn by the local women. Here you will learn about (and taste!) delicious, just-picked fruits that are grown only in Ecuador. Meat lovers should not miss the tasty roasted pig, a very typical dish of this area, although leave some space for lunch.
Next we’ll have time for lunch in an area restaurant. Then our final stop will be at a local family’s workshop where we’ll see the process of weaving shawls and ponchos on antique looms, using dyes extracted from plants. At the end of this full-day tour outside of Cuenca, you will be returned to your hotel.