A town known for its beautiful handmade jewelry? Sign me up!
San Jerónimo is a small town about a half-hour trek from Huancayo. Its main street is lined with little jewelry shops that are filled with a variety of styles from traditional motifs to modern designs. The shops have display rooms in the front and workrooms are often visible in the back.
The shops were doing a brisk business on the Saturday morning that we stopped by. There were locals flipping through catalogs and ordering wedding bands and other custom jewelry, as well as tourists filtering in and out. After stopping in a few shops, it became clear that we were most drawn to the silver and stone work, usually done with local influences. From condors to llamas to replicas of Nazca lines to scenes from Machu Picchu, the designs really run the gamut of Peru’s most well-known symbols. I picked out a lovely turquoise ring reminiscent of a coca leaf and a couple pairs of earrings with geometric shapes (not to mention a few gifts that will remain a secret!).
The town is also beautifully decorated with murals on the buildings that line the main street and surround the central plaza. The murals look very similar to those done by Josué Sánchez inside one of the rooms at Santa Rosa de Ocopa, with flowers, birds, and other typical designs from the region. There were also a few traditional dancing scenes depicting costumes like those we had seen in Hualhuas (the next town over) during the Festival San Roque.
What a lovely little town. I can’t believe it’s taken nearly 10 months for me to get there for a visit, and I have a sneaking suspicion we will be back again before our time here in Peru is up! I definitely recommend making the trip over to San Jerónimo if you’re nearby!