We took a 4 day tour through the South-West of Bolivia, ending 950 km away at the Uyuni salt flats. The driving was at times very long, so you had to find ways to pass the time, I personally entertained myself by imagining that all the scattered grass tufts were buried trolls about to jump out of the earth…this was very amusing for about 5 minutes! The views were however never dull, constantly changing as we were bounced in all directions in the jeep to the rhythm of our driver’s Bolivian music (a CD that he played over, and over and over again!). We felt we had travelled to a whole new world, the scenery is so diverse and bare, from western movie worthy canyons, to rolling arid hills and from desert plains to colourful lagoons. This journey was amazing and certainly a highlight of our time in Bolivia.
This city, though considered on the Gringo Trail, is not the most visited by tourists and we did indeed feel as if we were the only travellers there at times. The city itself does not host many worthwile sights other than the Christ statue (second largest after the one in Rio) and the market which is a good insight to the locals' way of life. There are thousands of stalls, organized by categories such as jeans, vegetables, pet food or shoes. However these categories are then spread out in no particular order, the meat stalls will be next to the toys and the sunglasses next to the bakery stands. The very colourful public buses are also quite a sight. Otherwise, most visitors use Cochabamba as a base for visiting the Parque Nacional Torotoro.
La Paz is very similar to most of the other cities we visited, only it is much, much bigger, louder, more polluted, animated and exciting. We unfortunately do not have much to tell of our own experience in La Paz as we didn’t spend much time here, and the time we did have we used to buy souvenirs and Christmas gifts. We have however put together some recommendations for things we would have done had we had the time and the few things we did see/do including a visit to the Tiwanaku ruins.
Our last stop in Bolivia was Copacabana and Isla del Sol on Lake Titicaca, the world’s highest lake. Copacabana is a small resort town 3 hours north of La Paz. It is nothing to rave about, but the setting is perfectly suitable for drinking mojitos (or the local cocktail made with Singani, which tastes like bad whisky mixed with cheap gin poured over lemonade) while enjoying the sunset over the bay.
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