Updated: Mar 3
Bolivia is an off-the-beaten-path destination for history, adventure seekers, and nature lovers. There is something for everyone in this unique destination, from the wildlife of the barren salt flats to the monkeys and crocodiles that call the Amazon home. You can take in the beautiful hikes across the Altiplano or trek the highest cities in the world. Bolivia is truly a destination for everyone, sure not to disappoint. These are the top five destinations in this off-the-beaten-path country.
As the highest navigable lake in the world, Lake Titicaca straddles the border of Bolivia and Peru. It is said to have been the birthplace of the Incan Empire. There are several islands tucked away on the lake full of Incan Ruins. One of the must-visits while visiting the lake is the Isla del Sol. Here you'll be able to explore an early Incan settlement of Chincana. Much is still unknown about this settlement, but it centers around a large structure, believed to be a Palace. Another historical artifact that pre-dates even the Incan Empire is the Horca del Inca. It was a victim of the destruction of the Spanish Empire due to Spanish misinterpretation. Horta del Inca translated to the gallows of the Inca, but in practice, it was not a gallows. It was built by the previous society as a part of seven stone structures, positioned to observe the heavens.
Once the main road from La Paz to the Amazon River Basin, the North Yungas Road passes through the Cordillera Oriental mountain chain and begins the longest descent toward Yungas lowlands. It is known as one of the most dangerous roads in the world, with over two to three hundred people dying on this road a year. The average width of this road is nine feet wide and completely unpaved in some regions of the road. To make matters worse, the weather is usually particularly unhelpful, with dense fog rolling up the mountain from the warm rain forest and near-freezing temperatures at the mountain's summit. There has been a new road since built that is a two-lane road that is much safer to traverse between the areas. Now, there are several groups that offer a cycling adventure along this dangerous road. Seeing this road from a unique perspective through cycling provides a great way to dive into a way of life that is long gone.
This city is responsible for 80% of the world's silver production and the initial source of Spain's wealth throughout the 1600s. In late 1700th century, Potosi became the home of the Spanish Mint and made their coins to be sent back to Spain. During this time, more than 200,000 people lived in Potosi, one of the world's wealthiest cities. This wealth came at a cost, and the city's history shows it. Today the mines no longer mine silver, but they still mine tin. You should add this spot as a destination because you can tour the old mines, speak with miners, and see its impact on the city.
Uyuni Salt Flats
One of the most unique and beautiful places in the entire world is the Uyuni Salt Flats. With more than 4,000 square miles of endless hexagonal tiles. This barren area is one that you must add to your trip to Bolivia. There is no wrong time to explore these flats. From May till October, you'll experience the dry regions of the salt desert. You can spend endless amounts of time exploring across the desert. During the rainy season, November till April, there is a constant sheet of water anywhere from six inches to 20 inches deep. This creates the illusion of a glass surface and offers stunning pictures of the mirrored flats. You can even have the opportunity to stay in the Palacio de Sal, a hotel made entirely of mined salt from the flats. This is one of a kind experience to visit the most extensive salt flats in the world.
Not what you've learned about some of the more off-the-beaten-path destinations of Bolivia. Are you ready to start to plan your trip? Schedule an online consultation with me to plan your perfect trip.