La Paz (Bolivia): what to see, altitude, Valley of the Moon

Visit La Paz, where the inhabitants live, things to know about the altitude, the most interesting spots in the city of Bolivia.

Guide La Paz

La Paz is the seat of government of Bolivia, but not the capital of the country, because the role is played by the city of Sucre. Placed at an altitude of about 3,600 meters above sea level, La Paz lies perched on the slopes of a deep canyon created by the River Choqueyapu, under the district of El Alto, the other part of the city located about 4,000 meters above sea level, on ‘ plateau where there is also the airport.

From the district of El Alto you can admire a spectacular view of La Paz, with Mount Illimani, 6,438 meters above sea level, in the background, characterized by snow-capped. On top of the canyon and the poorest people living on the plateau, the altitude is higher and the air is thin, while the rich population lives below, where the air is oxygenated. It must acclimatize a bit for those not accustomed to such altitudes and they happen to experience a temporary altitude sickness just off the plane.

What to see in La Paz

From the top you go down through narrow streets and very steep to the city center, at an altitude of 3,600, where there are traces of colonial architecture. Plaza Murillo overlook the Palacio Legislative, the Palacio Presidencial and the Cathedral. The Church of San Francisco, in the Baroque style, is located on the square and is among the most interesting churches to visit.

There are also numerous museums, including the National Museum of Art, the Archaeological Museum, House of Murillo and the Museo de Instrumentos Musicales. Not mancani markets, the most characteristic is the Mercado de las Brujas, where they sell amulets and offers for the worship of Pachamama.

Further south, we meet the commercial part of the city, dominated by skyscrapers, further down you will find the elegant residential neighborhoods. The Valley of the Moon, which is located about 12 km. South of La Paz, is worth a trip. It is a rocky landscape formed over thousands of years of erosion, which looks like the moon.