When thinking of my travels across South America, Bolivia was always just a transit country. It still managed to suck me in, and after 22 days I’m thankful I delved a bit deeper.
Following the trail from Lake Titicaca, La Paz and staying a while in Sucre, it was a good start to see what Bolivia had to offer.
As expected La Paz is a typical capital city. It’s busy, big and impersonal. There aren’t too many travellers who enjoy La Paz, but I thought it was great. Whether it’s because I didn’t have too many expectations or that I escaped the hostel scene while I was there. whichever, I highly recommend you give it a few days on your South American journey. Especially make sure you see a local wrestling match in El Alto. It’s completely fake, tacky and hilarious. A cheap and fun night out for locals and tourists. Steer clear of the hostels like Wild Rover and Loki. You will just end up limiting yourself to one location and only travelers. What’s the point? Get involved, visit local restaurants and go to a few local shows/bars.
Of course the Death Road was one of the other attractions I had to tick off the list. My brother loves to mountain bike and after pushing me to go a few times, I love it. It was a fairly difficult 5 hour ride but nothing you can’t handle. It has beautiful scenery, a bit of adrenaline and a generally great day out. I went with Burro Bikes and they were great. Very helpful but as with most operators don’t expect the best bikes. They are all fairly worn out, no matter what they tell you.
After speeding along on my travels from Huaraz, all the way down Peru and through La Paz, I decided to stay in Sucre to brush up on my Spanish. I figured I can’t buy too many things on my travels (more weight in the backpack) to take home with me (I don’t currently have a home). So! I thought I would leave with a language. At £5 an hour for private lessons, I spent 5 days, 4 hours a day going back to school. My teacher was patient and so helpful. The people in Sucre are great, the weather was hot, I had my friend Rosa with me and we had our own apartment for the week. Life was good and Bolivia was growing on me.
As with most countries in South America. You go in with an open mind and you will be surprised with what you find.
Thanks for reading!