When I decided to go to Peru
, I knew there would be plenty of handicrafts to capture my attention. I even packed a collapsible tote bag to lug my purchases back home. In Lima, I stayed at a hotel in Miraflores. On my first venture out into the city, I hadn’t even walked a couple of blocks before I stumbled upon a huge open-air native Peruvian arts and crafts market—the Miraflores Arts and Crafts market, the largest of its kind in Lima. Vendors, all dressed in native costume, had spread out their goods and wares all over the plaza area. On the periphery were vendors selling from stalls. Each of the stalls had a sign indicating where the vendor was from, so it was good place to start learning about the craft specialties of the various regions of Peru. I’m not good with rummaging through a thousand items to potentially find the one thing I like, so I was just about to leave the market when I heard the sound of music. I was in Lima on Peru’s Independence Day, which is a national holiday, so the market was extra festive with music and dancers performing in the plaza. I quickly left the vendors behind, found a spot to sit down and listen to the music, and watched the world go by. If you’re not in walking distance to the market, you can easily get there by taxi.