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Published: September 18th 2018
When you think of Bolivia, the first thing that comes to mind is Salar de Uyuni salt flats or Lake Titicaca, but there is more to Bolivia than you may think.
We had no idea that there was a western style landscape sitting in the south of the country and it is definitely a place to visit with its incredibly red mountain backdrop and quiet feel.
We wanted to come to Tupiza as the tours to Salar de Uyuni go a different route and are a lot less busier than going from Uyuni town plus the landscape around peaked some interest.
We arrived to Tupiza from Sucre, on our final night bus of this trip, at 4.30 am. Luckily the hostel was only five minutes walk away from the bus station and that someone was able to greet us at the hostel and let us use the room to catchup on some lost sleep!
We planned to stay in Tupiza for four days and our first day we organised our salt flat tour with Alexandro Tours. They are rated 2nd best for tours plus we had three separate recommendations to go by.
The downside might be that sometimes you may
have to wait a day or two for other people to join before leaving for the tour as it's based on a minimum of four people and it's basically low season right now which also plays a part. The good news is that the day before leaving three people were joining us so we can leave the day we had planned.
One of the main activities to do here is called The Triathlon. This comprises of a full day tour with a combination of horse riding, mountain biking and driving in a jeep around the area of Tupiza, however this looked quite full on and we had a few days here so we decided to do the horse riding on one day and the mountain biking and jeep tour the next day. Plus this ended up being cheaper and more relaxing in the end.
We spent three hours on horseback pretending to be in the wild west and it was basically my first time on a horse. We wouldn't say it was thrilling and I'm not sure I would do it again but it was a good experience and something different. We visited a few different places in
the canyon and landscape is formed from the minerals in the land and carved from centuries of wind and rain forming incredible shapes of spikes and spires of different colours.
The mountain biking was in a different valley where we were driven to the start and then it was basically a slight downhill for 14km in to town followed by our support vehicle behind. Again the scenery was amazing! we were the only people around and we followed a train of llamas walking in the dry riverbed.
After a brief change over we drove another area south of the town and had lunch in a favourite spot for the locals, again we were the only people around, and then afterwards our driver, the 29 year old hostel owner, drove us around to all the various lookouts and places to visit in the area. The area also is part of the Dakar Rally route too!
The views, different colours and landscape are really impressive! It's just amazing that this area isn't visited as much as others.
We quite enjoyed Tupiza and it was good to have some decent accommodation (Butch Cassidy Hostel) with a fantastic breakfast, comfy bed (except
for the non stop static shocks, a regular feature with Peruvian and Bolivian beds), hot shower and big kitchen to be able to cook our dinners and lunches for £2 or less. The area is stunning and we would recommend visiting, even if it was just a day!
Now we can look forward to what we know is going to be a visually stunning four days of South West Bolivia and then on to our final country, Argentina!
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