Friday, March 23rd, 2012
We arrived safely in La Paz about 6am. The flights were tolerable, Curtis was body searched at Portland, we sat directly in front a crying baby from San Francisco to Miami, and they managed to lose our luggage upon arrival in La Paz. We took a taxi to the city center, where our hotel was located, and had to wait till 11am to check-in. So we wondered about the streets and had breakfast till our room was available.
After check in, we took a well deserved nap and were fresh (minus clean clothes) and ready to explore our surroundings. Those who are familiar with altitude sickness can relate to how we may have been feeling at the time - at 12,250 feet (2.25mi). We did not suffer from the major effects we´ve heard of (most likely due to taking the correct medications before we got there) but we did feel exausted after doing everthing, and we mean everything. This limited the distance we could walk. So, after laboriously walking about 2 blocks we found a neat little plaza called Plaze Murillo. Murillo is the center of a large complex of government buildings. Sated with pigeons,
Curtis body searched
The TSA guy definitely enjoyed it more.
the picturesque park is perfect for people-watching and just relaxing. After the park, we wandered for a couple hours for a place to eat dinner. Originally we had decided on going somewhere authentic Bolivian but considering this land on the steep streets (which by the way leaves San Fancisco wanting) we settled on the first place that looked good. Of course Jen wanted to go to the cute little restaurant bathed in candlelight which happend to not have one Bolivian dish on the menu, but the food was good so Curtis did not complain too much.
Saturday, March 24th, 2012
We slept forever and barely made breakfast provided by the hotel. Luckly, our bags arrived early and wrapped in celophane. Our first stop after breakfast was a severely detoured trip to the bus station. Our bodies had already shown improvement to the altitude. Walking was definitely easier. At the bus station, we decided on an overnight bus ticket directly to Uyuni where we´ll take an overnight tour of the Salt Flats. After we purchased our tickets, we got some Bolivian fast food (which means, under an hour) and wandered to back to Plaza de San Fransisco - just around
Plaza de San Francisco
Taken early in the morning upon arrival to La Paz.
the corner of our hotel.
After a quick pee, we caught a taxi to the Parque Urbano Central, one of the highest points in La Paz and perfect for panoramic photos. The park is peaceful and a great break from the hustle and bustle of the streets below. After the park, we hopped another taxi to Calle Jaen, the most picturesque street in La Paz. The street is quaint and short and retains much of the original cobblestone and facades as they existed during colonial Bolivia, when under Spanish rule.
Calle Jaen was our last stop for sightseeing. On the walk back Jen saw some pastries being sold from a street vendor, which are very plentiful here. She got three of them (oink oink) for under 10 Boliviars, or less than $1.50. Afterwards we ended up at a restaurant in the very fancy Hotel Rosario. We had to order the llama steak , which was delish, and the trout, which is locally caught in Lake Titicaca was also very good. The whole meal was only 227 Boliviares equivelant to 30 bucks.
After dinner we had a quick night cap at the cafe downstairs from our room and
They threw a parade for us
Also on the day we arrived, a marching band took over the main street and welcomed our arrival.
promptly passed out.
Next stop, Salar de Uyuni!!!
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