Blogs from Bolivia, South America - page 7

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South America » Bolivia » La Paz Department October 25th 2013

Four awesome weeks in Bolivia with my sister, and gnommie. The airplane arrived in El Alto which is at an elevation of 4000m. We took a taxi into La Paz and checked-in to our hotel. The altitude had us breathless from walking up the 2 flights of stairs to our room. The first few days we acclimatized and planned our adventures with the amazing tour operator Deep Rainforest. Some highlights include: Hiking through snow-capped mountains in the Andes Riding our single-gear bikes on the World’s Most Dangerous Road The Amazon rainforest was so green and lush we were instantly lost. Smelling the stench of the jungle pigs befo... read more
La Paz, capital city of Bolivia
Camacho Market in La Paz
Tradition Indigenous Clothing

South America » Bolivia » Potosí Department » Tupiza October 22nd 2013

For an amateur geologist like myself, Tupiza was so delicious. The little town was nestled in a spectacular setting of red-rock canyons, multicolored hills, and cactus forests and bisected by a dramatic, ever-changing river. With only 25,000 people, it was small enough that I easily got out of town and accessed fine hiking trails. Plus, in Bolivia, everything was wonderfully affordable, so I had an upscale room, went horseback riding in Butch Cassidy country and gorged on gorgeous tropical fruit. As usual, time stretched and my planned days became weeks. Cry for Me, Argentina I left the multi-colored canyons of my beloved Iruya when the Argentine holidays began; on January 3rd, the once-peaceful town had become swamped, and I lost my room. With a week left on my visa, I went to little-visited, adobe Yavi (population ... read more
my faithful steed heading into the canyon
Valle de los Machos
Riding in the red rock canyons with Dutch friends


Remote, Touristy Uyuni Yikes--I had only five days left on my Bolivian visa! Time to leave La Paz, Bolivia's capital (the highest in the world) and head to remote Uyuni for a tour of one of the country's highlights--the Salar de Uyuni. Barring another Bolivian roadblock or problems with the tour jeep, I would be deposited at the Chilean border on August 15, the last day of my visa--ah, life on the edge. In La Paz, I boarded a sweltering bus full of locals to ugly Oruro where I had a long layover before boarding my freezing, budget compartment on the Wara Wara del Sur train that chugged me to Uyuni at 3 am. Fortunately, the hotel I wanted was a short walk away and had a duvet on my bed. At 3700 mts/12,000 ft, Uyuni ... read more
Rare James Flamingo, one of three types on the lakes
an artificial geyser, one of several used to generate energy
salt flat hexagons to the horizon

South America » Bolivia » La Paz Department » Isla del Sol October 13th 2013

After returning to La Paz from our wonderful journey through the Salt Flats outside of Uyuni, we stayed 2 nights and prepared to leave for Copacabana. We took a taxi up to the Cementario area where the buses and combis leave for Copacabana and found a bus ready to leave and we were in Copacabana in a few hours. We stayed at the Hostal Sonya, on the 4th floor -- a nice room, clean with hot water. We explored the town and found that our hotel was away from the tourist mess on the main street. We walked down past the Cathedral with the beautiful blue Portugeuse tiles on the domes and the main square was an interesting collection of street vendors selling religious paraphanalia (sp??) and other stuff. Then the main street to the port ... read more
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Réveil au milieu de la nuit, dur ! Mais notre excitation nous aide à pallier notre manque de sommeil. La jeep nous emmène au pied du volcan Licancabur que nous commençons à grimper à 3h du matin sous un superbe ciel étoilé. Jusqu'au lever du soleil, la difficulté de l'ascension réside surtout dans le manque de lumière et les appuis hasardeux, sur une pente très caillouteuse. Au bout de 3h30 de montée, les choses sérieuses commencent, et le froid n'aide pas ! Heureusement, un magnifique lever du soleil rend les choses les choses plus faciles, et c'est finalement au bout de 5h que nous parvenons en haut du volcan, à plus de 5900m d'altitude : vue incroyable sur tous les sommets environnants, ainsi que sur les Lagunas Blanca et Verde, le tout à la lumière du ... read more
Lever du soleil depuis le volcan Licancabur

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South America » Bolivia » La Paz Department » Copacabana October 11th 2013

Copacabana--Sweet Tourist Central Copacabana sits on picturesque Lake Titicaca, which at 3800 mts/12,500 ft, is the world's highest navigable lake. I'd first visited in March when passing through from La Paz, Bolivia, to Puno, Peru, to meet Brendan Vermillion, a Travelblog friend. It's about three hours from each of these cities and a weekend/holiday getaway for urbanites wanting a little nature and fresh air. It also provides a stopover for travelers going between the two countries and visiting legendary Isla del Sol--so lots of tourist facilities (and touts). On my first visit in March, the summer rainy season, the Andes were covered with snow and the pre-Incan, Aymaran agricultural terraces that climb up the hills and around the... read more
 sunset over Lake Titicaca
traditional women entering the basilica
Hmm--what plastic, non-biodegradable tat should I buy for my car?

South America » Bolivia » La Paz Department » Isla del Sol October 10th 2013

Sacred Island I'd been visiting Incan sites and steeping myself in their legends for months in and around Cuzco, Peru, the navel, the center of the Incan Empire. Now, on the Isla del Sol (Island of the Sun) in Lake Titicaca, I was high on a ridge on the tip of the island at the womb of the empire--the Sacred Puma Rock, the site of their creation myth, where their sun god and first people emerged. I'd come full circle. The Isla del Sol, off the coast of Copacabana, Bolivia, was wonderfully remote, serene and primitive--no internet or cars, but lots of pigs, sheep, cows, and donkeys wandering around or hanging out on the beaches. I love towns where, at sunset, old people or children drive these animals from their pastures, through the streets and to ... read more
Cholas watching the dancing
Titicaca traditional reed boat with snowyAndes
Skinny peninsula snaking into Titicaca

South America » Bolivia » Potosí Department » Tupiza October 9th 2013

C'est à 4 heures du matin que nous arrivons entiers mais épuisés à Tupiza. Après une grasse matinée, nous passons l'après midi à faire le tour des agences pour réserver le tour salar d'Uyuni/sud Lipez. Mais avant ça, une journée triathlon nous attends autour de Tupiza. Au programme, Jeep, équitation et descente en vélo. Nous partons de Tupiza aux alentours de 9h pour explorer les environs. Nous profitons de cette matinée pour découvrir canyons, montagnes et rios. Le midi nous déjeunons dans une très belle clairière au bord d'un village. Après nous être relaxés dans ce cadre agréable, nous retournons en ville où nos chevaux nous attendent pour partir en balade à travers des paysages rocailleux et désertiques. Nous trottons jusqu'à un canyon avant de faire demi-tour pour entamer la dernière étape de la journée: grosse ... read more

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Rurrenabaque October 5th 2013

Well, we had a great last few days in La Paz including going to the outskirts of town to a place called the megacentre- a modern shopping centre with fast food, no Maccy D´s though as Bolivia doesnt have any...(or starbucks or kfc for that matter, not that I´ve seen anyway) and a cinema!!! With English films!!! Woo, so me Katherine and Nicky went to see a horror ´The conjuring´...it was really scary!!! And pretty good, we enjoyed it and it was such a treat to see a film in English for once! Anyway, the next destination on our agenda after La Paz was a detour up North to the jungle to do a pampas tour to see some wildlife!! We were due to get the bus on Monday at 12.30 in the afternoon. When we ... read more

South America » Bolivia » Potosí Department » Uyuni October 4th 2013

Currently in Pisac in the Sacred Valley in Peru!! (Oct. 13th, 2013) Well, we have finished our tour of the Salar de Uyuni (Salt Flats outside of Uyuni) and i have to admit that it was totally fantastic!! Everything was just perfect! I hope to give you some of the details in the following... So, our arrival in Uyuni was not very fun since Lisa was not feeling very well. The train from Oruro was fun and an interesting experience. About an hour´s out of Uyuni, we actually derailed in the desert!! And the train employees worked for about an hour and a half to (eventually) successfully put the engine back onto the track! It was amazing and I wished that I could´ve seen what they were doing but we weren´t allowed to exit the train. ... read more
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