15 Apr 2018
It is not a secret that the Riviera Maya is filled with retail stores chocker block full of ‘stereotypical souvenirs that visitors like to take home. Think velvet somberos, maracas, sarapes, and shot glasses. Store upon store offers these little souvenirs that seem to reflect your Riviera Maya vacation.
If you are following the country’s rich artisan traditions, these souvenirs are a far cry from the countries best keep secret, Mexican Folk Art. There are a few stores in the Riviera Maya who work hard to find artisans that still use ancient artisan traditions that truly reflect Mexico, its history, and culture.
Mixik – Tulum Folk Art Store
Sally Peterson has one of the oldest Folk Art stores on the coast and I am proud to call her a friend. Her collection of Mexican Folk Art is one of the best and thoughtfully put together. When she seeks out local artists she thinks about a few things; can this art be easily transported home, does the art reflect a deep history and culture of this country, is the art affordable and is this artist unique. This recipe has made her store extremely popular and known by both locals and visitors.
Address: MZA 6 LTE 22, Ave. Tulum, Centro (next to the ADO station on the south side of town)
Second Location: On the Beach Road in Tulum across from Zamas Hotel Km 3
Open from 9 am to 9 pm, closes early on Sundays.
Mexicarte – Akumal Folk Art Store
Just inside the Akumal arches is a little gem of a store called Mexicarte where Mexican Folk Art meets a contemporary Mexican gallery. As a store, their commitment goes much further than retail sales. Mexicarte is currently working with the cultural branches of the Mexican government to preserve the tradition and cultural heritage of ethnic and indigenous communities that exist in Mexico.
Address: Calle 16 Akumal (just inside the arches of Akumal on the right)
Open from 9 am to 9 pm Monday to Sunday
Casa Ines – Playa del Carmen Mexican Folk Art Store
One would think with all the stores along 5th Ave in Playa del Carmen there would be a host of Mexican Folk Art Stores to choose from. Well, that is far from the truth. Souvenir shops are in abundance but Mexican Folk Art Stores are few. A personal favorite, though not the only Folk Art store in town, is Casa Ines located at the entrance to Playacar in Plaza Paradiso. The goal of Casa Ines is to bridge the gap between people and Mexican artists.
Address: Plaza Paradiso Avenida 10 (at the entrance to Playacar)
Open from 10 am to 9 pm Monday to Sunday
Check these Mexican Folk Art Stores in the various cities and villages located in the Riviera Maya. You just might find a little treasure that will be perfect for your home or as a present.