Just 9km northeast of the capital’s outskirts sits CALDERÓN, a small town renowned for its brightly coloured figurines made of bread dough (masapán). The tradition is to take these to the cemetery on All Saints’ Day and the Day of the Dead (Nov 1 and 2) and place them on graves as an offering to departed souls. You can’t eat most of these painted and varnished figurines, but you wouldn’t want to chew off the intricate details, such as extravagant mock-filigree ruffs and fibrous hair. You can tuck into guaguas de pán (bread babies), with colada morada, the sweet, hot and purple, seasonal drink made with fruit, herbs and purple cornflour.
In town on Carapungo, the main street, there are a number of good artesanía shops. To get here by bus, take the Metrobus to the Ofelia stop and a “feeder” for Calderón.