My First Few Days in Bolivia
Trip Start May 30, 2009
4Trip End Oct 14, 2009
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Where I stayed
Jodanga Backpacker's Hostel
Anyway the flight over was relatively pain free, LAN is a great airline, it was cheap, the plane was new and clean, and the food was decent (as far as airline food goes). As we were landing, just minutes after we started our descent into Lima I could look to my left and see that we were lower than some of the peaks in the Andes coming up through the clouds. Once in the Lima airport, I quickly forgot any Spanish I knew when someone started talking to me. After a long layover I transfered to a flight to Santa Cruz with a stop in La Paz
Santa Cruz is not a very nice city. I write this now having experienced a few smaller nicer towns in the area. People are generally not very friendly, the streets are dirty and there is not much to see. There are a couple of markets and souvenir shops, but not much in terms of shopping. The one upside is there are many different food options, some of which are quite good.
One thing of interest to report here is the drivers are crazy, and I mean nuts, they make NYC drivers seem like old people. They fly around the city, many intersections have no lights or stop signs, so people (pedestrians and drivers) kinda just go when they feel like it, which is a little nerve-wracking.
The one really enjoyable experience I had was going to the Guembe Biocentre. They had a butterfly dome and a bird exhibit, complete with toucans, macaws, sloths, and squirrel monkeys, as well as pools, for swimming and for paddling, and an island full of monkeys
I did enjoy staying at the Jodanga Hostel, however, as I met a lot of very interesting travelers there who had tons of advice on traveling around South America as well as some great stories.
Other than that nothing too interesting to report from Santa Cruz, we had to stay there a little longer due to us being in Bolivian Time ( a concept I have learned to know and love, people here really take their time with things), so we got out of the city and went to Samaipata...