Beautiful Bolivia is located in the heart of South America, surrounded by Brazil to the northeast, Peru to the northwest, Chile to the southwest and Argentina and Paraguay to the south. Known by some as the Tibet of the Americas, remote Bolivia is home to an astonishing landscape of mountains, deserts, forests and savannahs. Landlocked and inhabited by the highest number of indigenous people in the Americas, Bolivia is a land of superlatives and a must visit destination for adventurous travelers.
Though one of the least visited countries in South America, Bolivia is still home to a great number of attractions. Topping the list of places to go in Bolivia for many is the jaw-dropping city of La Paz. Located some 3,650 metres above sea level, La Paz is the highest capital in the world and is famous for its scenery, shopping and friendly people.
Bolivia offers such a diverse countryside that La Paz might seem a world away from another one of Bolivia’s star attractions, Salar de Uyuni. The world’s largest salt lake, Uyuni is located near the crest of the awe-inspiring Andes. Featuring salt at times 10 metres deep, the layers are so thick you can drive over it. Another one of Bolivia’s leading attractions is La Titicaca, the largest lake in South America, and nearby you’ll find Tiwanaku, a site of ancient Incan Empire ruins that was once home to a city of over 15,000 people.
Despite being the size of France and Spain combined, Bolivia is home to a mere 10 million people, which makes many of the country’s leading cities feel more like charming old towns. Refined Sucre is one of which and offers a glimpse into Bolivia’s aristocratic Spanish heritage, whilst Potosi is a quant town that was once the centre of Bolivia’s silver mining industry.
Love the local flavours of La Paz
Of all the destinations in Bolivia, other than La Paz, the lively Santa Cruz is one of the only places in Bolivia you’re likely to encounter any hustle and bustle, though some might want to leave it all behind at the Parque Nacional Amboro, locate just fourty kilometres west of Santa Cruz. Home to jaguars, giant anteaters, tapirs and several species of monkey, the area at the confluence of the Andes and the Amazon has many hundreds of kilometres of parklands for you to explore.
Another thing you’ll want to explore in Bolivia is the local cuisine. Yes llama is on the menu but deep-fried chicken is a much more popular Bolivian dish and must be tried with some Ilajhua, a spicy Bolivian sauce similar to Mexican salsa. Some other notable dishes to try include Silpancho, a dish similar to Wiener Schnitzel, and Pique a lo macho, a grilled meat dish with spicy sauce and potatoes.
Climate is something else diverse about Bolivia and the country’s weather ranges from cold to tropical depending on where you visit. Wherever in Bolivia and whenever in the year you decide to go, what you should know is that Bolivia is one of South America’s cheapest and safest travel destinations meaning there has never been a better time to start planning your trip.