Catching My Breath
Trip Start Apr 27, 2009
80Trip End Apr 27, 2010
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La Paz is a very busy city and has tons of character in the form of steep, bustling streets. It's definitely one of the most unusual cities I've visited, lying cradled high up in the Andes. Each time I forgot about the altitude and started walking at a normal pace I was quickly reminded that there was a reason people were taking it easy other than the typical South American lack of concern for the clock. I took the "hop on, hop off" bus tour of the south side of the city and the Valle de Luna - apparently "hop on, hop off" didn't quite translate because the only stop was at the Valle de Luna where we were given 40 minutes to wander round before heading back up into the city. It's a very different place than the Valle de Luna in Chile and was formed as the heavy rains and strong winds eroded away the soil in some areas leaving huge towers rather than a flat surface. The variation in altitude from the highest part of La Paz to the lowest is about 1,000m (or a Munro - the hill not my Dad!) and that translates to a temperature difference of about 10 degrees celsius meaning that my jumper was on and off frequently during the open-top bus ride.
Once I got back to the city centre I wandered up the Prado, completely bemused by the number of mini-vans populating the streets
The prices are definitely more appealing than those in Chile, however, making the fact that my hotel didn't have kitchen facilites irrelevant because going out was so cheap. I got a really nice steak with chips and a drink for less than £4 - and that wasn't the cheapest place I could have eaten!
Off on a trip to Lake Titicaca in the morning which should be interesting.