La Paz is one of the best cities in the world to explore. There are so many activities to do inside and around the city. During your time in La Paz we recommend a stay at The Cathedral hostel. It's away from the crowded centre and party hostels that accompany it, with a chilled out atmosphere and a well equipped kitchen. Here are our recommendations for how you should spend your time in and around La Paz...
One thing you cannot miss in La Paz is the notorious death road. It involves spending a full day hurtling down the most dangerous road in the world on mountain bikes, sound like fun? The price varies dramatically from place to place who are all offering practically the same thing. The only major difference is the quality of bike. We went with the cheapest we could find for a front suspension bike but would probably recommend getting a full suspension for the best experience. El Solario offered the tour for 310BOL including all food and entrance fee to the road (yes most companies charge a separate entrance fee).
You just have to ride the cable cars at some point and this is the perfect opportunity to do so. They are the cheapest way to enjoy an aerial tour of this magnificent city. Ride the cable cars to Irpawi, you may need two or three connections depending on where your starting out, but the more the better as they are super fun. When you arrive in Irpawi take a minivan heading towards Cota Cota. From Cota Cota you either have to walk or take a hair-raising taxi to the peak. Explore the peak and take in the incredible mountainous views on one side and city views on the other. Then begin your hike down to the other side of the mountain which should take around 5-6 hours. Remember to take lots to eat and drink as there’s literally nothing around until you get down. When you meet up with the road, you can walk along the road for another 40 minutes or hop in a passing van for 2BOL.
Transport: 25BOL per person
VALLE DE LUNA
Another opportunity to take the cable cars or take the minivan. The cost by cable car is 3BOL per line or 2BOL for a minivan but obviously with the cable cars you get the views and no traffic. We took the cable cars there and the minivan back. Exploring the Valle de Luna takes around an hour depending on how many pictures you snap of this magnificent and unique landscape.
There are several markets in the centre of La Paz. You can visit most of them by taking one of the many walking tours or if, like us, you like to do things your own way you can plan your own tour. The fruit and veg market is a hive of activity with locals and tourists alike buying everyday goods for an absolute snip. Slightly further up the road you will find the much more touristic Witches Market. Here you will find several shops all selling almost exactly the same thing. Head to the Witches Market for jumpers, ponchos, handbags and other handicrafts to take home as souvenirs or just to keep you warm on those cold La Paz nights. A short walk from the Witches Market will bring you to San Fransisco Plaza and home to Mercardo Lanza. It's our favourite spot in La Paz to pick up some cheap lunch, we usually went for a huge mixed fruit juice and avocado sandwich for around $1 each.
LAKE TITICACA (copacabana)
Just 3 hours north of La Paz, on the border of Peru, lies the highest navigable lake in the world, Lake Titcaca. If only to escape the hustle and bustle of the capital, take a day trip to Copacabana. Whilst there it's possible to take a boat from the port and spend the day on Isla del Sol. The island is practically untouched and is home to Inca ruins and stunning views from all directions. If you are short for time it can be done in a day trip with transport from La Paz or if you are on a longer trip we recommend spending a night on the island. Peru Hop have options for both one day and overnight trips to Copacabana and Isla del Sol.
Full Trip: $29 with Peru Hop