Less than an hour from Salamá via a gap in the hills, RABINAL is a dusty, isolated farming town where the one-storey adobe and cinderblock houses are dominated by a large colonial church. Founded in 1537 by Bartolomé de Las Casas, Rabinal was the first of the settlements he established in his peaceful conversion of the Achi nation. The proportion of indigenous inhabitants is high here and the fine fiesta has a uniquely Achi character.

Market days (Tues & Sun) are fascinating in Rabinal – look for some high-quality local artesanías, including carvings made from the árbol del morro (calabash tree) and traditional pottery.

 

 

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