The city of La Paz (Our Lady of Peace in English) has a lot to offer, you can discover it by joining one of the walking tours on offer, by riding the cable-car lines, or by taking the new sightseeing city tour bus. From the center of La Paz to the Valle de la Luna in the south of the city, you can comfortably enjoy the different sights around you while learning about the city’s history.
La Paz has a rich history, architecture and culture to explore and there is no better way to do it than by bus. Because of the altitude, 3,600 meters above sea level, it can be difficult and tiring for newcomers to walk the steep streets, especially when one has only a few days in La Paz and there is so much to see, eat and learn. From inside the bus, whether it rains or not – which it does a lot during the rainy season between November and March – you can appreciate the colonial buildings, the Art Deco architecture, the vibrant street life and the beautiful panoramic views of Illimani (the 6.438-meters-high mountain protecting the city of La Paz).
Along the way you will pass through:
- Calle Sagarnaga: Home to the famous Witches Market where local and tourists alike can buy traditional clothing and ancient remedies.
- Plaza Murillo: This is where Pedro Domingo Murillo declared Bolivia’s independence in 1809, the first in South America to do so. It took six months for the Spaniards to get the control again and Bolivia had to wait until 1825 to finally be independent and proclaim the Republic.
- Mirador Killi Killi: One of the seven miradors of La Paz, this one has some of the best views, facing the Illimani and allowing people to appreciate how the city spreads south.
- Miraflores: This whole neighborhood is from 1920s. The Bolivian architect Emilio Villanueva Peñaranda conceived it and connected it to the Avenida Camacho. Here you can see the Hernando Siles Stadium, Plaza Uyuni and Avenida Busch.
- Sopocachi: A bohemian neighborhood, Sopocachi is filled with coffee shops, street art and interesting architecture, mixing styles and giving it a very unique feel.
- Valle de la Luna: After Sopocachi, The bus drives down to the south of La Paz to Mallasa where the Valle de la Luna or Moon Valley can be found. It was named by Neil Armstrong himself in 1969 who, while visiting La Paz, found an uncanny resemblance between the rocky structures south of the city and the Moon.
You can see all of this and more in the newly refurbished double-decker buses which are now available for tours around the city. The trip lasts approximately three hours, departing twice daily from Tuesday to Sunday at 2 pm. Departure is from Hotel Qantu on Calle Illampu in the center of the city. There are three stops for passengers to hop on and hop off: Plaza Murillo, Plaza Isabel la Catolica, and Las Cholas. The bus drops passengers back at the Hotel Qantu or gives them the option to get off at the cable-car station Curva de Holguin where they can take the yellow or green line. The yellow line goes all the way up to El Alto where it connects to the silver line and then to the red and blue lines.
A bilingual guide in each bus will provide information on the different buildings and places on the way, enriching each travelers’ experience with local knowledge.
|Illampu 740 Hotel Qantu||14:00|
|Plaza Isabel la Catolica||15:00|
|Kiosco de las Cholas||15:45|
If you have more time in La Paz and want to explore places near by and make the most of its museums and attractions you can check this guide listing 15 things to do in an around La Paz.