A tianguis is an open air market or bazaar
A bazaar , Cypriot Greek: pantopoula) is a permanent merchandising area, marketplace, or street of shops where goods and services are exchanged or sold. The term is sometimes also used to refer to the "network of merchants, bankers and craftsmen" who work that area...

 that is traditionally held on certain market days in a town or city neighborhood in Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 and Central America
Central America
Central America is the central geographic region of the Americas. It is the southernmost, isthmian portion of the North American continent, which connects with South America on the southeast. When considered part of the unified continental model, it is considered a subcontinent...

. This bazaar tradition has its roots well into the pre-Hispanic period and continues in many cases essentially unchanged into the present day. The word tianguis comes from Nahuatl
Nahuatl is thought to mean "a good, clear sound" This language name has several spellings, among them náhuatl , Naoatl, Nauatl, Nahuatl, Nawatl. In a back formation from the name of the language, the ethnic group of Nahuatl speakers are called Nahua...

, the language of the Aztec Empire. In rural areas, many traditional types of merchandise are still sold, such as agriculture supplies and products as well as modern, mass-produced goods. In the cities, mass-produced goods are mostly sold, but the organization of tianguis events is mostly the same. There are also specialty tianguis events for holidays such as Christmas as well as for particular types of items such as cars or art. Despite their cultural and economic importance in Mexico, tianguis have been problematic, as stolen and counterfeit merchandise is sold, garbage is left behind and crimes against shoppers and merchants are not unknown.


The tradition of buying and selling in temporary markets set up either on a regular basis (weekly, monthly, etc.) is a strong feature in much of Mexican culture and has a history that extends far back into the pre-Hispanic period. It was the most important form of commerce in the pre-Hispanic era , and after the Spanish Conquest, the Europeans mostly kept this tradition intact. Market areas have been identified in ruins such as El Tajín
El Tajín
El Tajín is a pre-Columbian archeological site and was the site of one of the largest and most important cities of the Classic era of Mesoamerica. The city flourished from 600 to 1200 C.E. and during this time numerous temples, palaces, Mesoamerican ballcourts and pyramids were built...

 in Veracruz
Veracruz, formally Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave , is one of the 31 states that, along with the Federal District, comprise the 32 federative entities of Mexico. It is divided in 212 municipalities and its capital city is...

, and a number of pre-Hispanic towns were initially founded as regional markets, such as Santiago Tianguistenco
Santiago Tianguistenco
Santiago Tianguistenco, often just simply called Tianguistenco, is a city and municipality located in Mexico State about thirty km south of the state capital of Toluca. It is located in the southwest part of the Valley of Toluca at the edge of the Ajusco mountain range that separates it from Mexico...

 and Chichicastenango
Chichicastenango, also known as Santo Tomás Chichicastenango, is a town in the El Quiché department of Guatemala, known for its traditional K'iche' Maya culture. The Spanish conquistadors gave the town its name from the Nahuatl name used by their soldiers from Tlaxcala: Tzitzicaztenanco, or City...

, Guatemala
Guatemala is a country in Central America bordered by Mexico to the north and west, the Pacific Ocean to the southwest, Belize to the northeast, the Caribbean to the east, and Honduras and El Salvador to the southeast...

 . The word “tianguis” derives from the Nahuatl word “”tianquiztli” with means day market or harvest. The most important markets, such as the one in Tlatelolco
Tlatelolco (Mexico City)
Tlatelolco is an area in the Cuauhtémoc borough of Mexico City, centered on the Plaza de las Tres Culturas, a square surrounded on three sides by an excavated Aztec archaeological site, a 17th century church called Templo de Santiago, a former convent, and office complexes that used to belong to...

, were set up and taken down every day of the week. This market served about one-fifth of the population of Tenochtitlan (Mexico City) before the Conquest and had its own governing system, which included a panel of twelve judges to resolve disputes. Today, one of the most visited exhibits in the National Museum of Anthropology is the model of the pre-Hispanic market such as the one in Tenochtitlan.

From the time of the Conquest to the present, many tianguis, especially in rural areas, have continued to operate much in the same way as before, with only changes in merchandise that reflect changing customer needs. In the cities, especially Mexico City, the history of these markets is filled with examples of attempts to regulate them and push them away to other places, with mixed success. The Zocalo
The Zócalo is the main plaza or square in the heart of the historic center of Mexico City. The plaza used to be known simply as the "Main Square" or "Arms Square," and today its formal name is Plaza de la Constitución...

, or main plaza of Mexico City, was the scene of a number of efforts to clear the area of “ambulantes” or day-merchants and establish permanent markets in or near the plaza such as the Parian. In all these cases, vendors eventually retook the plaza This problem was again tackled in the 1990s as part of an effort to revitalize the historic center of Mexico City. Despite much initial resistance, this area has been free of street peddlers since that time. Much of the tianguis business that used to be done in the Zocalo has now moved to other places such as the Tepito neighborhood.
In the 20th century, local governments in Mexico have promoted municipal or public markets or “mercados” in order to better regulate the selling of goods traditionally available in tianguis. In Mexico City, some of the better known of these markets are La Merced
La Merced Market, Mexico City
The La Merced Market is a traditional public market located in the eastern edge of the historic center of Mexico City and is the largest retail traditional food market in the entire city. The area, also called La Merced, has been synonymous with commercial activity since the early colonial period...

, Abelardo L. Rodriguez Market
Abelardo L. Rodriguez Market, Mexico City
The Abelardo L. Rodriguez Market is a traditional public market located in the historic center of Mexico City, northeast of the main plaza, or Zocalo. It was built in 1934 as a prototype for a more modern marketplace and has a number of unusual features such as day care and an auditorium...

 and Mercado Lagunilla. La Merced is located in an area that had been a huge tianguis for most of the colonial period as it was located at the edge of a lake (now drained). The Abelardo L. Rodriguez Market was specifically built by the government in the 1930s in order to try and “modernize” the sale of produce and other staples. It went as far as having a day care center and a theater and commissioning Diego Rivera
Diego Rivera
Diego María de la Concepción Juan Nepomuceno Estanislao de la Rivera y Barrientos Acosta y Rodríguez was a prominent Mexican painter born in Guanajuato, Guanajuato, an active communist, and husband of Frida Kahlo . His large wall works in fresco helped establish the Mexican Mural Movement in...

 to supervise the painting of murals inside. These murals can still be seen today. However, these efforts have not eliminated the tianguis tradition; in fact, the number of these informal markets (5,836,000) far surpasses the number of mercados (2,810,000). In Mexico City alone, there are 317 mercados versus 1,357 tianguis. One reason for this is that many of these mercados are not well-maintained and few new ones have been built since the 1970s.

The tianguis is part of the so-called “informal economy,” even though many of these “informal” vendors are well enough known and established to offer services such as layaway. While many establish stores consider the tianguis to be damaging to their businesses, many Mexican consumers see the two sectors as complementary. Surveys of consumers have shown that many Mexicans buy from tianguis due to the bargains, social interaction, and customer service that is often lacking in formal stores. According to one survey, over ninety percent stated that they have bought merchandise from a tianguis, with the average family spending about $300 pesos per visit. The most common items sold in tianguis include groceries, beauty supplies, clothing, appliances, electronics, prepared foods, tools and used goods. About a third of Mexicans buy at least some of their clothing and shoes in tianguis.

Tianguis set up and operation

In the most traditional of tianguis, public officials will close off a street to vehicle traffic on a specified day so that merchants (called “ambulantes”) can set up their spaces on the sidewalks and/or roadways. Most of these spaces are covered by plastic tarps meant to protect sellers and vendors from the sun and/or rain. They often enclose the entire area, giving the market an enclosed feeling. In many rural and smaller towns, there is usually a preferred area, which is usually in the town center, near the church plaza and permanent market.

In larger cities, this kind of market exists, often in places where there are no supermarkets or mercados nearby. Neighbors and permanent merchants in the Del Valle neighborhood
Colonia del Valle
Colonia del Valle is a neighborhood in the Benito Juarez borough of Mexico City. The city includes "...a great number of parks, vast and tree-lined streets, prestigious shopping malls, and some city landmarks..."...

 of Mexico City see the weekly tianguis as a benefit. It brings basic staples such as vegetables, fruit, clothing as well as crafts and traditional sweets to a neighborhood that does not have a permanent market or supermarket. For permanent merchants, the tianguis brings increased foot traffic to the area. Many crowd around established markets or “mercados” such as La Lagunilla in Mexico City. In cases such as these, vendors set up stalls everyday, but the area is most crowded on weekends. On Saturdays in La Lagunilla, stands selling leather, coats and jackets, vintage clothes and other items crowd the streets.

Some tianguis are private spaces, which usually contain both permanent buildings and open areas for stalls. One example of this is El Sol in Zapopan, Jalisco, where the vendors in the permanent area operate all week and the tianguis area is mostly occupied on weekends.
Most tianguis operate more according to tradition than by formal rules. All have some kind of administrator or administration committee. The job of administrators is to interact with local authorities on behalf of tianguis sellers and manage internal affairs, especially the assignment of spaces and the collection of rental fees. The first rule is the process of negotiating for a space, but often this includes the denial of spaces for those who are unknown to the administration. Another is for vendors to watch out for authorities and warn others of authorities who may come to inspect sellers. In some markets, bartering is making a comeback, especially in the rural areas, such as the northeast of Morelos
Morelos officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Morelos is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 33 municipalities and its capital city is Cuernavaca....

 state. In one market in Zaculapan, 150 of 400 vendors state that they accept bartered goods, especially in produce and staple food products such as milk and bread. One reason for this is that many rural families lack cash, but raise produce for sale on their own farms and orchards. This tradition has existed for centuries, but increases in hard times.

Vendor spaces can be as simple as a cloth on the ground to a simple table or pile of boxes to tables with walls made up of interconnecting metal poles. Those who sell goods from the ground may have only a few things to sell or their cloth might be filled to the edge. Those with a table have the advantage of having their goods in easier reach of both buyer and seller. Merchandise from these spaces is usually produce, hats, jewelry, pottery and other small, unbreakable items. Stalls with walls allow for the hanging of merchandise such as clothing or the addition of shelves for more delicate wares. These type of stalls can display six times the merchandise than those who sell from the ground or table.

Most goods sold in tianguis are small items that customers can carry away. In many of these markets, vendors selling similar items group together. This has advantages for both buyer and seller, as it provides a wider variety of products than would a single merchant. It also lets shoppers know where to find a particular item. Certain goods are more prone to this such as produce, meat, and certain specialized or craft items. However, exceptions to this occur because a vendor cannot afford space in the area or because he or she is looking for convenience shoppers who are not looking to bargain. Most tianguis sellers, especially produce sellers, arrange their wares in certain arrangements, such as in baskets, or into neat piles to make their wares more attractive.

Rural tianguis

The tianguis in rural areas most closely resemble those of centuries past. Most still contain a large amount of agricultural supplies, produce and other food staples, livestock, handmade items and traditional clothing. In many, indigenous languages such as Nahuatl and Zapotec can be heard. One example is the Sunday market of Cuetzalan
Cuetzalan is a small town set high in the hills in the north of the Mexican state of Puebla, 183 kilometers from Puebla, the state capital. It is located in the Sierra Norte region. The town itself is characterized by sloping cobbled streets and numerous rustic buildings...

, Puebla
Puebla officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Puebla is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 217 municipalities and its capital city is Puebla....

, where Nahuatl speaking people can be heard negotiating prices on items such as vanilla beans, handcrafted textiles, huipil
A huipil is a form of Maya textile and tunic or blouse worn by indigenous Mayan, Zapotec, and other women in central to southern Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, and western Honduras, in the northern part of Central America. Some are also worn by men, particularly in Guatemala...

s, coffee, flowers and baskets much as their ancestors did. The Tlacolula
Tlacolula de Matamoros
Tlacolula de Matamoros is a city and municipality in the Mexican state of Oaxaca, about 30 km from the center of the city of Oaxaca on Federal Highway 190, which leads east to Mitla and the Isthmus of Tehuantepec ....

 Sunday market in Oaxaca is the largest and busiest in the central valleys area of the state, and brings people from the very rural areas into town to both sell and buy. The market fills an important retail and social gap as most of the outlying villages are too small to support permanent stores and many use the opportunity to converse with distant neighbors. Even sellers will consider who they want to socialize with when choosing a selling space. The tianguis of Chilapa
Chilapa de Álvarez
Chilapa de Álvarez, informally known as Chilapa, is a municipality in the Mexican state of Guerrero, approximately 54 kilometers east of state capital Chilpancingo. It is a very old town, its first official charter was issued by the Aztec government in the 15th century, after the area's conquest by...

, Guerrero
Guerrero officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Guerrero is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 81 municipalities and its capital city is Chilpancingo....

 attracts thousands of Nahua
The Nahuas are a group of indigenous peoples of Mexico. Their language of Uto-Aztecan affiliation is called Nahuatl and consists of many more dialects and variants, a number of which are mutually unintelligible...

 and Tlapaneco people, who come to buy and sell handcrafts, medicinal plants, local specialties such as pozole
Pozole is a ritually significant, traditional pre-Columbian soup or stew from Mexico. Pozole was mentioned in Fray Bernardino de Sahagún's "General History of the Things of New Spain" circa 1500 CE. It is made from nixtamalized cacahuazintle corn, with meat, usually pork, chicken, turkey, pork...

 and many other items. Many of the visitors are from neighboring regions. Prices are low. It is possible to buy a liter of mezcal
Mezcal, or mescal, is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from the maguey plant native to Mexico. The word mezcal comes from Nahuatl metl and ixcalli which mean 'oven cooked agave.'...

 for only 25 pesos
Mexican peso
The peso is the currency of Mexico. Modern peso and dollar currencies have a common origin in the 15th–19th century Spanish dollar, most continuing to use its sign, "$". The Mexican peso is the 12th most traded currency in the world, the third most traded in the Americas, and by far the most...

. The weekly Thursday market in Villa de Zaachila
Villa de Zaachila
Villa de Zaachila is a town and municipality in Oaxaca, Mexico, six km from the city of Oaxaca.It is part of the Zaachila District in the west of the Valles Centrales Region...

 is divided into three parts, one devoted to firewood, as many still cook with it, one to livestock and the rest to basic staples.
While many of the goods sold in rural markets are similar to those sold for centuries, modern items such as mass produced tools, clothing such as jeans, CDs, DVDs and automobiles are also sold.

City tianguis

The organization and function of most city tianguis are mostly the same as those in rural areas; however merchandise varies somewhat and there are problems associated with holding this type of event in the more crowded city. One of the oldest continually operating tianguis in Mexico is the one in Cuautitlán
Cuautitlán is a city and municipality in the State of Mexico, just north of the northern tip of the Federal District within the Greater Mexico City urban area. The city has engulfed most of the municipality, making the two synonymous...

, just outside of Mexico City, which has been going on every Tuesday for over 500 years. The market was established in 1491 by the Chichimeca
Chichimeca was the name that the Nahua peoples of Mexico generically applied to a wide range of semi-nomadic peoples who inhabited the north of modern-day Mexico and southwestern United States, and carried the same sense as the European term "barbarian"...

s when this area was rural and a way station between Mexico City and points north. Since then, Cuautitlan has become a crowded part of Greater Mexico City
Greater Mexico City
Greater Mexico City refers to the conurbation around Mexico City, officially called Mexico City Metropolitan Area , constituted by the Federal District—itself composed of 16 boroughs—and 41 adjacent municipalities of the states of Mexico and Hidalgo...

, but the tianguis is still in the same place and operated more or less in the same manner. This market congregates 7,500 vendors from various municipalities and states such as Michoacán
Michoacán officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Michoacán de Ocampo is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 113 municipalities and its capital city is Morelia...

, Puebla, Pachuca
Pachuca, formally Pachuca de Soto is the capital of the Mexican state of Hidalgo. It is located in the south-central part of the state. Pachuca de Soto is also the name of the municipality of which the city serves as municipal seat...

 and the municipalities of northern Mexico State. It extends over 250,000 m2. There are efforts to move it away from the center and near the municipal border with Tultitlán, but the merchants have refused to be moved.

Due to the change in tastes needs of customers, urban tianguis focus on different merchandise. Produce and other basic staples are still offered, but other items are far more likely to be manufactured items such as electronics, name brand clothing and other wares. Relatively few crafts or agricultural items are offered in most city tianguis. Merchandise mostly concentrate on more modern and manufactured items, such as clothing, purses, beauty products, electronics and hand appliances. Those who sell audio and video CDs, a lucrative business, will often have large loudspeakers playing samples of their wares at very high volume.

Mexico’s two largest cities, Mexico City and Guadalajara, have large number of tianguis that employ many people. Officially, Guadalajara has 143 registered tianguis in the city, with no new ones approved since 1997. These tianguis have over 40,000 stalls combined. These stalls pay a nominal fee of between 2.5 and 3 pesos per square meter for the right to be there. About half of the tianguis in GDL operate once a week, about 15% every two weeks and the rest about once a month. In Guadalajara, it is estimated that approximately 95,000 people work in this sector.

In Mexico City, there are 1,066 officially recognized tianguis controlled by 600 tianguis associations, each of whom has between forty and six hundred members. Hundreds of these close entire streets at least one day a week. These tianguis employ about 130,000 people. These markets are regulated by the Secretaria de Desarrollo Economico and by the Secretaria de Economia Federal. Most tianguis vendors are located in the borough of Iztapalapa, where they make up about one third of the total. This borough contains 304 tianguis markets convene during the week with Gustave A. Madero coming second with 160. Sunday is the busiest day for tianguis, and Tuesday is the slowest.

The largest tianguis in Mexico City is San Felipe de Jesus, which is located on the border of Gustavo A. Madero and Tlalnepantla. This market has been in operation for over forty years, covers 17 km and has 17,000 merchants, which offer their wares from Tuesday to Saturday. This is one of the least governmentally supervised markets due to the fact that it stretches over both the Federal District and the State of Mexico.

Local governments have the authority to inspect and regulate the businesses that operate in tianguis. Regulations such as Article 52 of the Reglamento Interior de la Administration Publica of the Federal District, are supposed to regulate when and where these events take place as well as inspecting locales and products for sale. Vendors can be removed if they exceed the limits set, but many cities have trouble enforcing this, leading to traffic jams. Regulation, such as the checking of scales, and cooking equipment in food stalls, is scarce. Vendors in tianguis are liable under all consumer protection laws as well. However, many authorities readily admit that they do not have the manpower to enforce laws and regulations in large, crowded and numerous tianguis, although raids are performed sporadically, especially looking for stolen and pirated merchandise. Stolen merchandise, especially electronics, and pirated CDs and DVDs is the largest criminal activity found in tianguis, with pirating of CDs and DVDS one of the most lucrative businesses. Tianguis sellers can be quite sophisticated. According to Iztalapalpa officials, vendors at the El Salado tianguis set up shop as early as 4 or 5 am in order to receive stolen and other merchandise from trucks behind the Unidad Habitacional Concordia Zaragaza housing complex, and use radios to communicate and watch out for authorities Officials claim there are at least ten places in the market that sell drugs and two that sell guns. Much of the allegedly stolen merchandise consists of computer equipment and handheld gadgets such as iPods. The sale of stolen merchandise such as this is popular because it can cost about half of what it does in legal channels. Counterfeit perfumes are a specialty of the tianguis Del Rosal in Colonia Los Angeles. Empty bottles of the real merchandise are bought by the vendors and then filled with the counterfeit perfume. PROFECO
The Procuraduría Federal del Consumidor, or Office of the Federal Prosecutor for the Consumer is an organization of the Mexican government, dependent of the Attorney General, designed to protect consumers against abuses or fraud by companies operating in Mexico.Mexico became the second Latin...

, Mexico’s consumer protection agency, advises strong caution when shopping in tianguis as it is extremely difficult to help those who have been a victim of fraud. Another problem is the sale of vehicles that are stolen or illegally imported from the United States. This problem is serious enough to warrant the vigilance of the Procuraduria General de Justicia of Mexico City and special warnings by PROFECO. Restricted items such as medicines, cigarettes and alcohol are also openly sold. Other available restricted merchandise includes fireworks, blades, knives, pornography, endangered species, and smuggled goods. Other articles inlclude hoods, tear gas, fake guns, and sometimes even real guns. Medicines from the government health service can be found in El Salado, which is held on Wednesdays on Calzada Zaragosa. Patches and uniforms from services such as city police and firemen, as well as the electric company and Telmex can be found as well. Lastly, pickpocketing
Pickpocketing is a form of larceny that involves the stealing of money or other valuables from the person of a victim without their noticing the theft at the time. It requires considerable dexterity and a knack for misdirection...

 and assault on both merchants and customers is not unknown.

Many tianguis have problems in the neighborhoods they occupy. These events are accused of “devouring” streets as regulated and non/regulated ones grow and multiply. The main problem with tianguis is that merchants spread out their wares over sidewalks and other public spaces beyond where they are authorized, blocking pedestrian and vehicular traffic. These places can measure four by four meters on city streets. Monterrey Street in the Del Valle neighborhood of Mexico City is cut from six lanes to three lanes on tianguis days. Another problem is that they block scarce parking space. Residents complain about noise and odor. Lastly, at the end of the day after the stands are taken down and brought home, tons of garbage is left behind, and in areas where market activity is frequent, infrastructure such as light poles and sidewalks are damaged.

Despite the problems and despite the fact that tianguis merchants do not pay taxes, rent or services (however bribes are paid to many city officials) like established businesses do, eliminating them or even moving them is very difficult due to the large number of people they employ and their firm place in the culture. Attempts to remove illegally placed merchants or move tianguis entirely generally meet with protest. For about 34 years, the area around the permanent Mercado Juarez had been the scene of one of the largest tianguis in the city of Toluca, operating more or less every day. On weekends, the number of vendors was as high as 2,800. More than 1,100 police were needed to forcibly remove 560 stands from the triangular plaza in front of Mercado Juarez and the four blocks surrounding it. To prevent the vendors from returning, the entire plaza was back hoed and a large fence installed around the plaza. Police patrolled it and the four-block area for weeks afterwards. While there was no violence, tensions were high and there were verbal protests. The clearing of this tianguis was done to alleviate traffic problems in this part of the city, with vendors offered new space at the site of the old airport. In some areas, such as Tepito
Tepito is a barrio located in Colonia Morelos in the Cuauhtémoc borough of Mexico City bordered by Avenida del Trabajo, Paseo de la Reforma, Eje 1 and Eje 2. Most of the neighborhood is taken up by the colorful tianguis or open-air market. Tepito’s economy has been linked to tianguis or traditional...

 in Mexico City, almost the entire neighborhood is employed as informal merchants with even more that come in to sell. This market has a long tradition here and is the largest and most vibrant in the city in the 21st century.

Specialty tianguis

Many occasional and some semi permanent tianguis are specialty markets, either specializing in one type of good or are set up for a specific season. One semi permanent market is the “Fashion Tianguis,” with about fifty vendors who sell clothing each weekend at Parque México
Parque México
-Description:The park is located on Avenida México and Calle de Michoacán in Colonia Hipódromo, only two blocks from Avenida Insurgentes, one of the city’s main arteries. It was the first modern park, created with an architectural design. It copies many of the elements of European gardens, such as...

 in Mexico City. Most are true designer labels from various countries, including Mexico. Merchandise includes many ítems that have not sold in upscale stores. Other tianguis that specialize in fashion include Plaza Cibeles on weekends, La Lagunilla on Sundays, and Del Chopo on Saturdays. The last specializes in “dark” and Gothic fashion
Gothic fashion
Gothic fashion is a clothing style worn by members of the Goth subculture; a dark, sometimes morbid, eroticized fashion and style of dress. Typical Gothic fashion includes dyed black hair, black lips and black clothes. Both male and female goths wear dark eyeliner and dark fingernails. Styles are...

 . The city of Tonalá, Jalisco
Tonalá, Jalisco
Tonalá is a city and its surrounding municipality within the Guadalajara Metropolitan Area in the state of Jalisco in Mexico.The city had a 2005 census population of 374,258 and the municipality had a population of 408,729 and an area of 119.58 km² . The municipality lies adjacent to the east...

, sponsors a tianguis adjacent to the permanent market, which is restricted mostly to vendors who sell locally made pottery and other craft items. It is called the Tianuges de Artesanos. A number of cities such as Monterrey
Monterrey , is the capital city of the northeastern state of Nuevo León in the country of Mexico. The city is anchor to the third-largest metropolitan area in Mexico and is ranked as the ninth-largest city in the nation. Monterrey serves as a commercial center in the north of the country and is the...

, and Guadalajara have tianguis that operate only to sell used cars.

The open air art market of San Ángel
San Ángel
San Ángel is a colonia or neighborhood of Mexico City, located in the southwest in Álvaro Óbregon borough. Historically, it was a rural community, called Tenanitla in the pre Hispanic period. Its current name is derived from the El Carmen monastery school called San Ángel Mártir...

 has occurred every Saturday morning since 1964 and sells mostly traditional and indigenous fine arts, created in Mexico. It is located in a tiny park named Plaza Tenanitla and is the oldest art market in Mexico City. Some of the artists and artisans are the children and grandchildren of the original founders of the market. While many of the artists live in Mexico City, a number travel from as far as the states of Puebla, Guerrero and Mexico State to sell. It is informally known as the Saturday Bazaar, but the association that runs it formally calls it the tianguis Artesanal Tenanitla. Most of the stalls still sell paintings and sculptures but other also sell crafts, snacks and antiques.

Seasonal tianguis serve needs for holidays and other annual events. In San Pablo Tultepec
Lerma, Mexico State
Lerma is a city and municipality located just east of Toluca and 54 km west of Mexico City in Mexico State, Mexico. The city was founded in the early colonial period and named after the Duke of Lerma in Spain. The municipal area saw two battles of the Mexican War of Independence, the Battle...

, there is a tianguis of fireworks in August and the first part of September before the annual Independence Day celebrations
Grito de Dolores
The Grito de Dolores also known as El Grito de la Independencia , uttered from the small town of Dolores, near Guanajuato on April 19, 1810 is the event that marks the beginning of the Mexican War of Independence and is the most important national holiday observed in Mexico...

 in Mexico. It is located on the entrance to the town from the highway between Toluca
Toluca, formally known as Toluca de Lerdo, is the state capital of Mexico State as well as the seat of the Municipality of Toluca. It is the center of a rapidly growing urban area, now the fifth largest in Mexico. It is located west-southwest of Mexico City and only about 40 minutes by car to the...

 and Mexico City. Everything from sparklers to complicated sets with moving parts are sold. This market operates with licenses from the State of Mexico as well as from the Secretariat of National Defense. In Saltillo every Thursday during Lent
In the Christian tradition, Lent is the period of the liturgical year from Ash Wednesday to Easter. The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer – through prayer, repentance, almsgiving and self-denial – for the annual commemoration during Holy Week of the Death and...

, there is a tianguis devoted entirely to fish and seafood, partially sponsored by the federal Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food
Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food
The Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food is Mexico's agriculture ministry.-External links:*...

 agency. A number of municipalities, such as Hermosillo
Hermosillo is a city and municipality located centrally in the northwestern Mexican state of Sonora. It is the capital and main economic center for the state and region. It contains almost all of the state's manufacturing and has thirty percent of its population...

, Tepic
Tepic is the capital and largest city of the Mexican state of Nayarit.It is located in the central part of the state, at.It stands at an altitude above sea level of some 915 meters, on the banks of the Río Mololoa and the Río Tepic, approximately 225 kilometers north-west of Guadalajara, Jalisco....

, Xalapa
Xalapa-Enríquez, commonly Xalapa or Jalapa, is the capital city of the Mexican state of Veracruz and the name of the surrounding municipality. In the year 2005 census the city reported a population of 387,879 and the municipality of which it serves as municipal seat reported a population of...

 and Celaya
Celaya is a city and its surrounding municipality in the state of Guanajuato, Mexico, located in the southeast quadrant of the state. It is the third most populous city in the state, with a 2005 census population of 310,413. The municipality for which the city serves as municipal seat, had a...

, sponsor tianguis for back-to-school, in order to allow parents to buy uniforms, school supplies and other needs at lower prices. Credit is also offered to customers at these events. The most important seasonal tianguis are for the Christmas holiday season, which runs from late November to January 6. From near Christmas Eve up until Epiphany, many of these stalls are open from early in the morning to very late at night. Most of the merchandise revolves around items for nativity scenes and Christmas trees. Trees are sold as well, with taxis and men with hand trucks nearby to hire.

Some tianguis can be a tourist attraction in themselves. Every year the indigenous and folk art tianguis is held in Uruapan
Uruapan is a city and municipality in the west-central part of the Mexican state of Michoacán. The city is the municipal seat of the municipality...

 during Holy Week
Holy Week
Holy Week in Christianity is the last week of Lent and the week before Easter...

, which is a major vacation time in Mexico. Over twelve hundred artisans come to the city on the large main plaza to sell. The promotional literature states that it is the largest tianguis of its kind in the Western Hemisphere, and is accompanied by arts contests, parades and banquets. This event is one of the top five for the state of Michoacan and accounts for 15% to 20% of the income this small city makes each year.
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