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Bolívia Vacation and Travel Guide
Bolivia, officially Plurinational State of Bolivia, is a country located in central-western South America, has a population of about 10 million. It limits the north and east by Brazil, south to Paraguay and Argentina, and west by Chile and Peru. Its surface is the sixth largest in Latin America and comprises different geographical areas as the Andes, the Altiplano, the Amazon, the Llanos de Moxos and Chaco, making it one of the most biodiverse countries in the world.
Politically Bolivia is constituted as a plurinational state, decentralized and autonomous. It is divided into 9 departments and maintains a territorial claim to Chile for a sovereign access to the Pacific Ocean.
Sucre is the capital and seat of the court, while La Paz is the seat of the executive, legislative and electoral bodies.
Bolivia is located in the central area of South America, between 57º 26' and 69º 38' of longitude west of the Greenwich meridian and 9º 38' and 22 ° 53' south latitude thus covers more than 13º geographical . Its 1,098,581 km² extending from the central Andes, passing by the Chaco to the Amazon. The geographic center of the country lies in the area of Puerto Estrella over the Rio Grande in the province of Ñuflo de Chaves, located in the department of Santa Cruz.
The country's geographical location allows us to understand a variety of landforms and climates. There is a wide biodiversity (considered among the largest in the world) as well as different ecoregions and ecological subunits as the Altiplano, the Amazon plains, dry valleys, the Yungas and Chiquitano ranges that are framed in different altitudinal variations ranging from 6,542 Nevado Sajama m to 70 m near the Paraguay river. Despite the variety of geographical contrasts, Bolivia has no coast in the ocean (quality lost after the War of the Pacific).
Bolivia is a country with great potential for tourism, which has many attractions due to its diverse culture, geographical regions, rich history and cuisine.
World Heritage Sites in Bolivia
In Bolivia there are six declared World Heritage by UNESCO:
The ruins of the city of Tiwanaku, one of the cradles of human civilization, and the oldest in America and that existed for 27 centuries.
City of Potosi, historic city for its religious and civic monuments, its streets, its people and of course, for its majestic and imposing Cerro Rico discovered in 1545, now converted into a national icon.
The Amazon, the great lung of the planet, wildlife sanctuary
Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, representative of the Amazon and its immense biodiversity place, located on a large plateau, covered by vast forests and magnificent waterfalls.
Madidi National Park, the most diverse place in Bolivia, declared by National Geographic, one of the 20 best places to visit in the world.
Toro Toro National Park, where paleontological riches are,
Jesuit Missions of Chiquitos, the only active missions of all of South America.
El Fuerte de Samaipata, the great rock carved by the Incas in the foothills of the Andes as the limit of his empire.
Oruro Carnival, great festival where religion is mixed with pagan.
Main Tourist Attractions in Bolivia
Lake Titicaca is a body of water located on the plateau of Collao in the Central Andes at an average altitude of 3,812 meters between the territories of Bolivia and Peru. It has an area of 8,562 square kilometers of which 56% (4,772 km²) correspond to Peru and 44% (3,790 km²) to Bolivia and 1,125 km of coastline; its maximum depth is estimated at 281 m and its average depth is estimated at 107 m. Its level is irregular and increases during the austral summer.
It consists of two bodies of water separated by the Strait of Tiquina; the largest located in the north is called Lago Maggiore or Chucuito has an area of 6450 km², being in this part its greatest depth (283 m) near the island Soto. The other smaller body called Minor or Huiñamarca located south has an area of 2,112 km², with a maximum depth of 45 meters.
Lake Titicaca is among the Andean mountains in a basin of about 58,000 km². Being the world's highest navigable lake and ranks 19th in the world by surface.
Among the most prominent tourist attractions they are found in the Lake Titicaca we can name:
Beaches of Lake Titicaca: Among the best known beaches are Capachica Chifrón, Ccotos, Ponds, Chatuma and Juli, located more than 3850 meters above sea level in the department of Puno, on the Peruvian side and the famous Copacabana beach, similar to its counterpart Brazil, on the Bolivian side.
The Isla del Sol is a Bolivian island in the Titicaca Lake belonging to the province of Manco Kapac in the department of La Paz. It has a length of 9.6 km by 4.6 km in width and an area of 14.3 km². It is the largest lake island, its original name Titicaca island and therefore the lake where is takes its name, which means "rock puma".
It presents a rugged terrain with many terraces due to growing ancient Inca people. The island in the Incas was a sanctuary with a temple virgin dedicated to the sun god Inti and hence its name.
Throughout the entire island several archaeological sites, where it stands the "Sacred Rock" or Rock backgrounds, who by all accounts was the site from which Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo to found Cuzco appreciated. Chinkana or labyrinth also appreciated also Pilkokaina Palace of Inca times, only for their construction characteristics. Else are the steps of Yumani, leading to the top of the island, where there is a water source pre-Columbian times. In addition, at the top of the highest hill on the north side of the island, you can see a monolithic viewpoint which targets the islands visible from the summit. The lookout was built by Ito Bastías and Joshua Garay, and made only with rocks at the summit, without using a binder or glue.
The island is also the archaeological museum Challapampa where archaeological pieces salvaged from around exposed.
La Isla de la Luna, another sacred place of the Incas near the Isla del Sol. Copacabana, a small town on the shores of Titicaca, home to the Virgin of Copacabana, Bolivia crowned Queen.
Floating islands of the Uros (Peru - Bolivia): These are a set of artificial islands made of a type of reed called totora, inhabited by descendants of ethnic Uru, whose main activity is fishing and hunting. While the floating islands are located on the Peruvian side of the lake, since 2007 have been built floating islands on the Bolivian side for tourism.
Uros life depends on the lake and reeds. The latter is a plant that not only do the islands, but also their boats called "reed horses" as well as build their homes with it and consume their outbreaks. It is a place where cultural tourism is and adventure.
The Andes Mountains
The Andes is the longest mountain range in the world spanning across the continent, they have optimum conditions for carrying out various sports such as climbing, hiking and rafting. Skiing, snowboarding and other winter sports are well developed in Argentina and Chile. Transition in the Andes is the highest concentration of ski resorts in the Southern Hemisphere, after New Zelanda, and presents exceptionally attractive regions such as:
In Bolivia is the highest ski trail in the world, called Chacaltaya. a mountain located in the Department of La Paz in Bolivia with a height of 5421 m located in the Cordillera de los Andes. It is 30 kilometers from the city of La Paz and close to the Huayna Potosi. It is the nearest to La Paz skiing, as it is the only ski area in Bolivia. It is notable for being the track closest to the line of Ecuador's highest ski resort in the world as well. The road to the base is 200 meters, is reached by a road built in the 30 Winter is very cold, though snow is scarce and only runs on weekends from November to February, the summer months. It is controlled by the Club Andino Boliviano
Nevado Sajama is a stratovolcano located in the Sajama National Park to the west of the country in the department of Oruro. It is part of the Western Cordillera and is the highest peak in the country (6542 m). Snowy slopes are inhabited by queñua (Polylepis tarapacana), in an open, scrubby forest, which is considered one of the highest forests in the world.
Peak structure is complex, the first ascent was the October 4, 1939 by the Austrian, Josef Prem and Wilfrid Kühm. You do not have a definite date of its last eruption, however, it is considered an extinct volcano.
The Salar de Uyuni
The Salar de Uyuni is the largest salt desert in the world continuously, with an area of 10,582 square kilometers (or 4,085 square miles). It is located about 3650 meters above sea level in southwest Bolivia, in the province of Daniel Campos, in the department of Potosi, in the highland region of the Andes. The Salar de Uyuni is one of the largest lithium reserves in the world, and also has significant amounts of potassium, boron and magnesium.
The Salar de Uyuni is also one of the main tourist destinations in Bolivia since they visit approximately 60,000 tourists every year. In November it becomes the breeding of three species of flamingo: Southern flamenco, the Andean flamingo, and parina girl. Giant Cactus up to 10 m are in the Fish Island. This island is the largest of all the islands located in the middle of Salar de Uyuni. It is also a tourist center within the salar. Mummies 3,000 years old were discovered in a cave on the edge of the salar. On the shores of the salar are several hotels built with blocks of salt, feature that rank among the most extravagant hotels in the world.
The Green and Red lakes, the Andean flamingo sanctuary with one of the largest active volcanoes in the world, Licancabur.
Bolivia is also the only country in the world to have the only hotel made entirely of salt, which is located in the Salar de Uyuni.
The Salar de Coipasa
The Salar de Coipasa is located in western Bolivia, in the department of Oruro, near the border with Chile. It is located in the west central part of the Andean highlands, at an altitude of 3657 meters. Has about 70 km long by 50 km and an area of 2218 km²1 (856 square miles) 25 km² in Chilean territory, which makes it the fifth largest continuous salt of the world.
The salt has a maximum thickness of 100 meters in layers of one to two meters thick. It is the second largest salt flat in Bolivia, after Uyuni and entirely surrounds the lake Coipasa. The rocks surrounding the salar are mainly volcanic including sporadic outcrops of sedimentary rocks west of the salar.
Through Negrojahuira gorge, about 20 km long, the Salar de Coipasa connects to Salar de Uyuni
The Historic cities of Potosi and Sucre
Potosí with its Cerro Rico, once the largest silver deposit in the world.
Sucre, the capital of the four names, in which the first cry for freedom of America stood up, and is also home to one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the Americas.
Cal Urqu is a paleontological Site, discovered in the quarry of a cement factory in the department of Chuquisaca. It is the site with traces of the world's largest dinosaur, because it contains more than 5,000 prints of 294 dinosaur species.
Freedom House, where the Declaration of Independence of Bolivia remains.
La Recoleta, Franciscan Monastery, one of the first in the city.
The Madidi National Park
The Madidi National Park is mainly characterized by being one of the most biodiverse parks, flora and fauna as well as ecological floors since goes from perpetual snow to the Amazon basin and hosting community ethnic groups in its territory. It was declared by National Geographic as one of the most biodiverse areas on the planet and one of the 20 places with the greatest tourist attractions worldwide. Part of the circuit of tourism in Bolivia.
National Park and Natural Integrated Management Area Madidi is among the provinces Abel Iturralde and Franz Tamayo, northwest of the Department of La Paz, Bolivia. Adjacent to other protected areas such as Integrated Management Natural Area Apolobamba, the Pilón Lajas Biosphere Reserve and Communal Lands and west, with the Tambopata National Reserve and Bahuaja Sonene National Park Peru.
Home to several ventures and Community Ecotourism Responsible Tourism, one of the most recognized locally and internationally Chalalan Ecolodge is owned by the indigenous community San José de Uchupiamonas. Followed by San Miguel del Bala Ecolodge owned San Miguel del Bala Tacana community, both located in the Madidi National Park. Recently they were opened other local initiatives such as Responsible Tourism Madidi Jungle Ecolodge, Sadiri Ecolodge and heart Ecolodge Madidi.
The enterprises of Responsible Tourism and Ecotourism settled within the Madidi National Park, comfortable boats offer transportation, unique accommodation, the best local guides and interpreters exquisitely prepared and delicious homemade food based on local products. Rurrenabaque is the beginning to live this unforgettable adventure Ecotourism visiting Bolivian Amazon.
The Noel Kempff Mercado National Park
The Noel Kempff Mercado National Park is a protected area in Bolivia, is located northeast of the department of Santa Cruz in the provinces of Velasco and Iténez in Bolivia borders the states of Rondônia and Mato Grosso in Brazil on the plateau Caparú or Huanchaca . A 600 km from the city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, was declared a World Heritage Site on 13 December 1991.
The package includes accommodation for tourists and three meals per day. Flor de Oro and Fierros camps have tourist infrastructure. The main camp is located in Flor de Oro. There is a community ecotourism venture, called "Lost World", led by the community of Florida adjacent to the PNNKM. The community offers basic services and local guides.
The park encompasses much of the Caparuch or Huanchaca plateau, which rises to 1,000 meters above sea level, determining a height of about 600 m above the surrounding plain. This formation contains important habitats rich in biodiversity and forms a spectacular setting.
Piso Firme region features archaeological sites. In the area of influence there, on the other hand, sites of great historical value such as the colonial churches of the Jesuit Missions of Bolivia in the towns of San Ignacio de Velasco, Concepción, Guarayos and San Javier.
In recent years, several scientific works, as James M. Allen, locate the lost continent of Atlantis on the Bolivian altiplano (specifically Aullagas Pampa, Oruro). These facts have led to a growing interest focused on the important archaeological riches.
Map of Bolivia