IF YOU’RE LOOKING TO ADD A LITTLE MAGIC TO YOUR NEXT VACATION, NOT ALL ROADS LEAD TO SALEM.
AROUND THE WORLD, CULTURES HAVE BEEN PRACTICING DIFFERENT VARIATIONS OF MAGIC AND HEALING FOR CENTURIES, AND MANY OF THEIR TRADITIONS ARE STILL AROUND TODAY. OF COURSE, WE CAN ALL AGREE RELAXING ON A BEACH WITH THE WAVES SLOWLY LAPPING IN THE DISTANCE IS IDEAL. BUT WHAT IF YOU COULD COUPLE IT WITH A LITTLE HEALING FOR THE SOUL AS WELL? ISN’T EVERY VACATION MEANT TO TAKE CARE OF BOTH BODY AND MIND?
Located in the South of Mexico within the state of Veracruz , Catemaco is a drop-dead gorgeous location, notable not just for its rainforests and sizable lake (which is said to emit its own energy), but also its brujos, a community of men sorcerers whose roots are stepped in the pre-Columbian period. The Congreso Nacional de Brujos is also hold here every year, officially known as “Ritos, Ceremonias y Artesanias Magicas”, which attracts about 200 shamans, healers, herbalists, psychics and fortune tellers and over 5000 visitors.
Peru has long been known for its shamanism history. A number of the “great masters” can still be found in the Amazon Basin in jungle towns where the practice continues in its least changed form. It trickles down into the bustling city of Lima where, hidden underneath the Gamarra Station, is the Mercado de las Brujas. It is here where bustling city life meets traditional folk medicine, still widely practiced by many in the country. After the market, Lima offers a wide array of cultural activities, including historical ruins or huacas, ancient Catholic churches.
La Paz, Bolivia
Not only La Paz is the world’s highest capital, set in a basin and surrounded by sharply rising peaks, it’s also incredibly affordable as a vacation spot, and has a culture rich in witchcraft. The Witches’ Market, also known as El Mercado de las Brujas, is located in Cerro Cumbre, a mountain clearing within the city. There expect to find everything from medicinal plants to dried potions to tiny bottles with an assortment of items meant to be carried as amulets. You’ll probably see yatiri, some of the last witch doctors left in South America. Marked by signature black hats and pouches filled with talismans and powders, they’re said to have the power to contact the supernatural and deal in spiritual as well as physical matters. If you find one, you can have your future examined through a scattering of coca leaves, a “divine” plant known for having permeated every aspect of life, art, and mythology within the Incan Empire.
Located in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines, Siquijor has had a longtime reputation of a place of magic and sorcery. During Holy Week Celebration, healers and herbalists prepare concoctions made from a variety of tree barks, herbs and other local ingredients… Heading over to Bandilaan Mountain View Park, visitors can observe traditional cooking and healing activities.
Straddling the former border between east and west Germany, the craggy peaks of Brocken are steeped in tales of witchcraft and magic dating back to pre-Christian times. The area’s myths spread far beyond the borders of this tiny region, and people, from as far away as France and Sweden, have traded stories of strange happenings atop Brocken Mountain, where witches are rumored to gather on Walpurgisnacht aka May Eve.