230 years of the foundation of Guatemala City

Neighborhood Ciudad Vieja, Zone 10

Ixchel Museum of Indigenous Apparel


Ixchel Museum.

Ixchel Museum of Indigenous Apparel

The Ixchel Museum was created to protect the very rich and diverse Mayan weaving and clothing patrimony of Guatemala..

Up to 1973, the Textile Commission of the Tikal Association was in charge of safeguarding the archaeological patrimony of Guatemala.  In 1976, the Association carried out their first exposition at the Industrial Park, Zone 9 and, that same year, Mr. León Pettersen and his wife, Carmen, donated to the Museum the first funds accrued from the sale of the book “Maya of Guatemala”.  The money was used to start up a nest egg that would later be used to finance the construction of the present facilities


The Textile Commission’s activities expanded and diversified and the members decided to develop the Ixchel Museum of Indigenous Apparel in 1977.  The museum’s name pays tribute to the Pre-Hispanic Mayan goddess of fertility and weaving.

At present, the museum is private and non-lucrative.  It is located inside  the campus of Francisco Marroquín University.

Architects Víctor Cohen, Augusto de León Fajardo, Meter Gieseman, Adolfo Lau, and Guillermo Pemueller designed the building; construction began in April of 1991 and the facilities were inaugurated in 1993.  The building’s frieze is quite distinctive and it symbolizes a very prestigious weaving pattern named rupan plato, which embellishes the typical blouses of Comalapa.  It represents a plate used in church to consecrate bread and fruits, a part of the cofradía rituals.


The Ixchel Museum exhibits a very complete and well-preserved collection of the most beautiful Guatemalan textiles.  It is the only institution in Guatemala that is devoted to collecting and preserving the local weavings.  The museum includes a learning center for children, a top-notch gift shop, a very complete collection of the works of artist Andrés Curruchich, and a very vast area where temporary exhibitions are set up.

The museum houses a library, a store, and a cafeteria.  Ixchel also offers courses, conferences, apparel rental, two art galleries available for rent, guided visits, etc.  The museum is open from Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. 


Popol Vuh Museum


Popol Vuh Museum is a non-lucrative scientific private institution housed inside Francisco Marroquín University.  Among its objectives, the museum strives to preserve, research, and make public the Guatemalan cultural and archaeological patrimony.


View of Popol Vuh Museum.

In 1977, the museum was founded with the private collection of archaeological and Colonial objects property of Jorge and Ella Castillo. The Castillo collection had been deemed, since the 1960’s, as one of the best Guatemalan collections.  Several objects therein had been part of international exhibitions of the Guatemalan pre-Hispanic art.

In 1978, the Castillos donated their collection to the Francisco Marroquín University with the purpose of formally establishing the museum, which started up at Reforma Avenue and 16 Street of Zone 10.

Three years later the museum moved to the Galerías Reforma building in Zone 9, where it remained for sixteen years.  The collection grew with individual donations and the first cataloging, restoration, and conservation efforts of the materials began.


The present facilities were inaugurated in 1997, inside the cultural complex of the Francisco Marroquín University, which also includes the Ixchel Museum and the Juan Bautista Gutiérrez Auditorium.

The museum also sponsors a learning program for students of all ages.  The program strives to motivate the young to learn about Guatemala’s pre-Hispanic and Colonial ancestry.  This program has become one of the most important extra-curricular activities for the Social Sciences and History disciplines. The museum also sponsors conferences about many topics related to Mayan archaeology.  In this manner, it provides the visitor with a unique visit to Guatemalan history along with one of the best pre-Hispanic and Colonial art collections in the country.

The museum is open from Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  Admission is Q25 for adults, Q15 for students with ID, Q10 for children 2-12.  Students and staff of the Francisco Marroquín University can enter free of charge

You can drive to the museum or take public transportation buses numbers 63, 82, 101, or 40R, which travel along the Reforma Avenue.  From the bus stop at 6th Street of Zone 10, right in front of the Ministry of Education, walk East along 6th Street through two major intersections with traffic lights.  You will find yourself atop the slope of Francisco Marroquín University; walk through the security booth and you will see the Popol Vuh and Ixchel Museums in front of you.


Center of Folklore Studies of the University of San Carlos of Guatemala


The Center of Folklore Studies of the University of San Carlos of Guatemala was created on July 8, 1967.  Historian Celso Lara Figueroa initiated the Department of Literary Folklore, inaugurated in 1975.

The research carried out in the center is very prolific, precise, and deep.  They strive to recuperate, attach importance to, disseminate, and organize Guatemalan popular lore.  To this date they have managed to assemble a vast collection of stories, legends, myths, and cases from every corner of the country.  They have also compiled a roster of storytellers of the countryside, marginal quarters, and old neighborhoods of Guatemala City.


The center has an open library and is located at Reforma Avenue 0-09, Zone 10, in the Neighborhood Ciudad Vieja. 


Beloved Neighborhood Program
Dra. Frieda Liliana Morales Barco