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“Grea Salvadorean food in a fun place”
Review of Feria Gastronomica

Feria Gastronomica
Ranked #3 of 7 things to do in Juayua
Attraction details
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level 5 Contributor
52 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Grea Salvadorean food in a fun place”
Reviewed November 1, 2010

Ruta de las Flores and the food fair at Juayua
Since my wife and I are serious foodies, we just had to go to the food fair that is held every Saturday and Sunday at the little mountain town of Juayua, a stop on the Ruta de las Flores. The fair was authentically local, with hardly any overseas tourists in evidence. The handful of people dressed a little more expensively might have been San Salvadorians. What places like Gran Via in San Salvador are to the affluent city folks, this fair is for the common folks living in towns and villages all around Juayua. There were dozens of food vendors selling freshly cooked El Salvadorian delicacies, beer stands purveying the ubiquitous Pilsener and the slightly better tasting Suprema, even a few pastry and coffee stands and plenty of stray dogs to add some local color and clean up after you if you simply hate to throw away your leftovers. We stuck to chicken and shrimp, though the ball shaped sausage seemed tempting if one didn’t care what was inside it. There were also long lines of craft and souvenir stands where we purchased little gifts for a few dollars apiece for friends and family back in the States. Beautifully made gift bags of the famous El Salvadorian coffee, selling for mere $4 a pound, seemed like a good bet and we bought three of those as well. In true Salvadorian fashion, none of the vendors were pushy or even that interested in making a few bucks off of the only two tourists at the fair. The fellow with the huge boa constrictor had quite a line waiting to be photographed with the huge serpent draped around their necks.
The fair is held every weekend until 5PM. Hundreds of vendors set up stalls all around the town square and in the alleys radiating from the square. There was a sort of center stage with loud music and even an emcee interacting with the crowd.
The ninety-minute drive from San Salvador to Juayea is quite comfortable as roads in El Salvador, even the mountain ones, are surprisingly good. The road to Juayea is full of furniture vendors selling locally made tables, chairs, beds and even cribs and highchairs. Small pick-up trucks ply their taxi trade up and down the mountain roads, hauling as many as fifteen passengers crammed into a standing room only pick-up bed. The money collector, yielding the more comfortable flat bed to paying passengers, finds a way to hang on to the truck using just one hand while collecting the fare and making change with the other. This is the lowest per capita use of gasoline I have ever seen for getting from point A to point B. There is nothing like necessity to make one frugal.

On the way to the mountain towns on Ruta de las Flores, we stopped for several photo-ops, the most impressive being a spot near the sugar cane fields with the Cerro Verde, the country’s tallest volcano, framed in the backdrop. Another spot had six volcanoes in a row. I wish I had a panoramic camera to squeeze them all into one frame.
For a four-hour trip to Juayea and back, we were charged $90 for two persons by Leo (7189-9853), the driver who is informally affiliated with the hotel. It was probably in line with a tour company’s price of $140 for two but for an eight-hour trip, which we had already decided was going to be too long a day. Upon our return from a wonderful food fest and a beautiful drive through the countryside, we flopped into the comfy bed in our Hilton room, turned on the plasma TV hoping to find something interesting and comprehensible (meaning in English) to watch, when lo and behold, I lucked upon a Vikings-Patriots football game in the second quarter with Vikings leading by three. It was a nail biter almost until the fourth quarter when Patriots pulled off a comfortable lead and won the game. Ruta de las Flores, Salvadorian food fair and American football - could one ask for a more perfect day?

8 Thank FloridianDesi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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27 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Polish first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“When in Juayua, visit the falls!”
Reviewed July 17, 2009

I'd gone to the gastronomic fair before but never knew about the waterfalls located nearby until I saw them on an MTV special (on Youtube). "Chorros de la calera" has 3 beautiful waterfalls. Getting there is quite an adventure~
Check out more about this place:

5 Thank alanis00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange County, CA
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“My Trip to Juayua”
Reviewed February 13, 2009

I am originally from El Salvador, but I had never been to the "Feria Gastronomica"
I had so much fun riding the train around the small town. The have lots of beautifully hand made clothing. They have horses you can ride for a minimal fee. The food was delicious and inexpensive.
I enjoyed my time there with my family and new friends.

5 Thank heymuchacha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Food Fair in Juayua, El Salvador”
Reviewed December 26, 2008

I just went to the "Gastronomica (food) Fair" here in Juayua this afternoon and didn't realize how big an event it is. Usually it's only on the weekends but since Xmas is a festive day here it was held today too. Not only are there 30-40 new food stalls set up around the main square selling a wide variety of things such as grilled frogs (minus the heads), ceviche, chicken cord-on-blue, large prawns, etc but they also have live music, horse and carriages for transport around the city and a variety of other events going on.

Quite the festive event. Usually goes for 4-5 hours and there are mostly tourists from El Salvador here. I counted maybe 6-8 foreigners in total.

A very fun time, much more than I expected, well recommended!

3 Thank sarah_thom2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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