Did you know that there is a city in the world that it’s main form of transport as cable cars? Not to mention that the population of this city is over 2 million?
Bolivia is a beautiful country, and La Paz is by far one of the most stunning cities I have ever visited. At 4,000 meters elevation the city is set amongst mountains, with colorful houses dotting the landscape.
We stayed at La Casona, a beautiful 4-star boutique hotel in the heart of the city & in perfect walking distance to all the highlights. We arrived early (5:30am to be exact) in the morning at the international airport, and were met by our guide and chauffeured to the hotel. We had several hours to relax at the hotel’s beautiful common area before starting our city tour at 9am with our guide Ricky. First we visited the valley of the Moons – which is a beautiful natural park located right outside of the city. After a scenic hike (roughly 40 minutes) we returned to the city for a “2nd breakfast” of Saltinas. The best way to explain this dish is Chicken Pot Pie meets spicy Potato soup, and it is actually quite delicious!
We continue onwards to take the orange cable car (1 of 7 in the city) to get a scenic view of the mountains, valleys, houses, and city life. I am still in awe of how expensive the cable car system in La Paz is. It was not built for tourists, but for locals and people take it everywhere.
After an sweep over the city by cable car, we continued onwards to visit the famous colonial streets, where you can find some of the best local foods in the city. Just across the bridge from the main part of the city is the San Francisco Church & the Witches market. The church is the oldest in Bolivia and the market, well sells herbs and “magic potions” for people who need help with a certain area in their lives (and are a bit superstitious). We finished our guided tour at the markets, and were within easy walking distance to our hotel.
Honestly, if you go to Bolivia stay at the La Casona – as it is a beautiful boutique & in the HEART of the city. We were able to easily return for an afternoon nap before setting out for another venture around the city.
For dinner we returned to a favorite local restaurant that our guide Ricky recommended – chicken, pork, potatoes, and white Bolivian corn were all on the menu. We ordered a large portion to share and were quite surprised at how delicious the food was. The trick in Bolivia, add the extra spicy sauce they give you at every meal – as it makes the food 100x more delicious.
Before heading back to our hotel we set out on a final cable car ride for the evening, watching the sun set behind the nearby mountains. Absolutely stunning, and the perfect way to end the evening!