A Travellerspoint blog

La Paz

Breathless in La Paz

sunny 16 °C

La Paz is dizzying in every respect, not only for its well publicised altitude (3600m), but also for its quirky beauty.

Heard that before? Thats cause its straight out of the Lonely Planet, but a great opening line i wanted to use.
We have used our time in La Paz to recharge the batteries after a crazy few weeks in Peru. Even managed to catch a couple of movies whilst here with our buddies James and Andrea. The movies with subtitles of course. My question for you is though, if you go and see a movie that is half in English and half in Italian with Spanish subtitles then what the hell do you do when the Italian bits are on? Thankyou Woody Allen for this gem.

IMG_7694.jpg

But it hasnt all been putting the feet up...quite the opposite actually. Our highlight so far being the Gravity Assisted Mountain Bike tour down the world´s most dangerous road - ¨Death Road¨. A crazy 60km bike ride that takes you down from 4700m to 1100m in altitude at adrenalin pumping speeds...just dont look over the edge!

The adventure begins...

IMG_7709.jpg
IMG_7711.jpg

The last thing you want before Death Road is a shot of 90% alcohol to get the blood pumping, but tradition is tradition so we obliged.

P7210020.jpg
P7210021.jpg
IMG_7712.jpg
IMG_7713.jpg
IMG_7714.jpg
IMG_7728.jpg
P7210023.jpg
P7210028.jpg
P7210034.jpg
P7210053.jpg
P7210068.jpg

This monument was built to remember all the Paraguayan prisoners of war who died whilst building the road back in the day. They have had the last laugh as way more Bolivians have since died on the road they built.

P7210062.jpg

P7210063.jpg
P7210071.jpg
P7210074.jpg
P7210077.jpg
P7210079.jpg

An example of one of the many many crosses that litter the road. Sometimes you even see a group of 20 or so crosses from when a bus went over.

P7210087.jpg

IMG_7741.jpg
IMG_7742.jpg
IMG_7746.jpg
IMG_7749.jpg
IMG_7783.jpg
IMG_7772.jpg
IMG_7788.jpg
IMG_7792.jpg
IMG_7768.jpg
IMG_7754.jpg

And finally...we made it and had survived the world´s most dangerous road!

IMG_7755.jpg
IMG_7756.jpg

What they didnt tell us what that half the adventure was surviving the bus ride back up the road...hairy stuff indeed.

IMG_7763.jpg

The next few days were far more tame as we checked out everything La Paz has to offer.

Moon Valley was a strange place indeed. Just a bunch of rocks really, but quite an interesting place to visit anyway.

IMG_7800.jpg
IMG_7804.jpg
IMG_7807.jpg
IMG_7822.jpg
IMG_7814.jpg
IMG_7798.jpg

Went to the Cholitas wrestling on the Sunday night. Was pretty excited about the prospect of watching women´s wrestling, was slightly disappointed to see they werent the greatest athletes going around. Picture watching WWF which is lame enough in its own right (sorry Killer), then make it 1000 times lamer and you have what we witnessed. Some funny moments in there though.

IMG_7827.jpg
IMG_7837.jpg
IMG_7851.jpg
IMG_7876.jpg
IMG_7878.jpg
IMG_7879.jpg
IMG_7883.jpg

But the bus ride up and back was worth it just for the view overlooking La Paz.

IMG_7830.jpg

The next day we stumbled across the infamous San Pedro Prison. For those who havent read Marching Powder (what have you been doing), this jail is a corrupt haven where inmates create, sell and traffic the purest cocaine going around. They also run cafes and restaraunts in there making life in the slammer really tough indeed.
As with every person ive ever met who has been here, we had a crack at getting in. Loitering around watching the goings on at the front gate for ten minutes or so before the following exchange with a machine gun clad security guard.

Guard (in Spanish)- Is there something you are looking for?
Me - Yeah we were just wondering if we could come inside have a look around, maybe chat with some inmates and try a bit of your cocaine.

  • Note - my response was both performed in English, and inside of my head

We quickly sped off around the corner...but yes we tried to get in.

IMG_7697.jpg
IMG_7700.jpg
IMG_7698.jpg

Back to the real La Paz...

IMG_7678.jpg
DSC_0033.jpg
IMG_7677.jpg
IMG_7836.jpg
IMG_7704.jpg
IMG_7702.jpg

This Coke machine says ¨The machine of friendship¨cause you need a mate to boost you up to get a drink.

IMG_7691.jpg

Righto after a week of fun in La Paz we are heading off tomorrow to Cochabamba. Adios amigos

Posted by chuddfi 07:45 Archived in Bolivia

Email this entryFacebookStumbleUpon

Table of contents

Be the first to comment on this entry.

Comments on this blog entry are now closed to non-Travellerspoint members. You can still leave a comment if you are a member of Travellerspoint.

Enter your Travellerspoint login details below

( What's this? )

If you aren't a member of Travellerspoint yet, you can join for free.

Join Travellerspoint