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Festival Indigena Jayuya 2021

Immerse yourself in indigenous culture in the mountains of central Puerto Rico


Last updated: by Olga Valchyshen
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Festival Indigena Jayuya is the most prominent cultural fair in Puerto Rico, which is held annually in the second half of November, referring to Christopher Columbus' arrival at Puerto Rico on November 19th. The folk festival takes place in picturesque Jayuya town, surrounded by Cerro La Punta and Los Tres Pichachos mountains. Festival Indigena is specifically focused on Taíno culture and heritage.

Jayuya is often called La Capital Indigena of Puerto Rico. It has been named after the Taíno chief and used to be home for Taino people for a long time. Jayuya is famous for its skilled craftsmen, particularly, woodcarvers. It features interesting architectural sites, sculptures, and coffee plantations.

The highlights of the 10-day Festival Indigena Jayuya include the beauty pageant, in which contestants try their best to show resemblance to Taino ancestors. Visitors can stop by a traditional yukayeque village as well as by an arts and crafts fair. Wood carvings and ceramics are the most popular items for sale. It's a must to hear Taino people playing their traditional music. About 61% of the Puerto Rican population share the Taino DNA, so the festival is an important event for the whole island to preserve its heritage.

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