Lovely La Paz and biking The Death Road

So.. I was worried that I would hate La Paz, I’ve heard it’s an ugly city and not worth to visit many days… but I had also heard it’s wonderful. You either love or hate la paz, and guess what –  I loved it!

I arrived in early morning and took a cab to the hostel, where I stayed the whole day with my computer, just chilling. I had a room with 6 people, but when I woke up (I went to bed when I got the room) we were only 2, me and Uma. Then in the afternoon another guy also showed up, Ad, both of them from England. We had really nice talks that evening. It’s a lot of party in this hostal, but our room remained calm, phew!

Next day Uma left and it was only me and Ad in our room for 6, really nice. :) We went for a walk around the city, I really really enjoy La Paz.. I had such a good feeling inside my body while walking around the streets, it feels bad to say it but I thought it was going to be much more “darker” here but people are so friendly and so sophisticated here..  there’s really a mix between business people in costumes and indigenous people.

Panorama over La Paz

Panorama over La Paz

La Paz is around 3650 meters above sea level, beautifully surrounded by mountains and snow tops. But the architechure is weird, you see one house that’s about to fall apart just besides a totally brand new modern house. They have a lot of colonial buildings, but it costs more to restore them then to build a new modern house.. so the whole city is a mix of everything, and I find it charming. :)

We went to Plaza Murillo, to the San Francisco church (yes, there’s one in every city),  had some humitas/tucumans,  shopped in the witches market (sooo many beautiful things!!!!) and then had a great coffee at Alexanders. Ad had been there the day before, and wow, great coffee (it’s not easy to get normal coffee in south america, it’s almost always nescafe) and the greatest brownie with ice-cream ever. Hehe. ;)

Plaza Murillo

Plaza Murillo

Me and Ad having tucumanas, lovely egg and potato empanadas for 3 bs each (0,4 USD) :)

Me and Ad having tucumanas, lovely egg and potato empanadas for 3 bs each (0,4 USD) :)

So weird architechture here in la paz....

So weird architechture here in la paz….

Llama fosters...

Llama fosters in the witches market… They help you keep bad spirits away when you move into a house..

So many shops... *shopping*

So many nice things to shop… :)

Wall in La Paz

Wall in La Paz

Then Ad left to the airport to go to Rurrenbaque (the jungle), and I went to the Altitude office to book my ”The worlds most dangerous road”-tour for next day. While I was sitting alone and a little bit sad in my room (yes, it was only me there now), Ad came back! His flight got cancelled because of a storm or something, too bad for him, but I had great company again : )

He also signed up for the same bike-tour tomorrow and then we went out to eat dinner in a place on the Sagarnaga street, a Thai/Indian/Japanese restaurant… It was a really long ”hallway” to the restaurant, and we were just about to turn around just because it was tooo long walk from the street.. but the music and my curiousness kept me going and when I saw the restaurant – beautiful cozy lights, lovely andean music, beautiful furniture – we were like ”oh, it’s looks nice, at least let’s go and see the menu!”. The man that attended us was sooooo sweeet, he was half bolivian and half italian, and a real gentlemen. So funny and talk active too, and he let us have a menu even if it was night, so it was 2 meals and dessert for like 30 bolivianos.. Perfect! And the food was amazing, I had indian aubergine-thing… so good. : )

Me and Ad having DELICIOUS food!

Me and Ad having DELICIOUS food!

Lovely restaurant!! Thai indian and japanese something... in sagarnata street.. one block from san francisco church to the left!

Lovely restaurant!! Thai indian and japanese something… in sagarnata street.. one block from san francisco church to the left!

Next day they picked us up at 7.30 to go to the Yungas road, or the Death Road as it’s normally called. We were about 14 people in total in our group, plus 3 guides. We went in two vans, and it was a really funny group, we also listened to really great music that makes you pepp. The road up to where the death road starts was closed though due to snowfall and icy roads, so we had to wait for a couple of hours in the mountains, we got our gear and had breakfast. The mountains were all covered in snow, so beautiful. A funny thing, the man I sat next to on the bus from Uyuni to La Paz was here too, with his two daughters that was visiting him from Brasil, such a coincidence! Hehe. 

Lovely sights on our way to the death road

Lovely sights on our way to the death road

In the beginning of the road, getting our bikes... snowy mountains!

In the beginning of the road, getting our bikes… snowy mountains!

Group picture before the ride. :)

Group picture before the ride. :)

Later the road opened and we started from La Cumbre at 4650m and around 64 km downhill bike tour through the most dangerous road in the world. There are many crosses along the road marking where the vehicles have fallen.. On Wikipedia it says that around 200-300 travellers are killed every year along the road, but I don’t know if it’s true.. or maybe it’s on vehicles. On bikes there’s just a few people every year that die, our guide told us last one was a Japanese girl that took a self shoot while cycling and fell over the edge… so now the guides tell us not to have any cameras with us while cycling, to leave them in the car, and they take pictures instead (the company gives you a dvd later with them).

Me and my bike :)

Me and my kona-bike :)

Group picture on the death road!

Group picture on the death road!

t was a really nice experience, such a beautiful scenery. I didn’t find the road that dangerous itself, you can of course fall on it because there’s sand and rocks, but the road is quite wide for an bicycle, it’s more dangerous for a car, or when two cars meet eachother, then one of them have to reverse until they find a place where it’s wide enough for two cars to pass. So bicycling isn’t as dangerous as long as you have control over your bike, some people fall on the road and maybe break their arm or something, but you don’t fall over the edge if you don’t go too fast. Also we had good weather, I guess it’re more dangerous when it’s all really muddy. One thing that is a little scary is that the downhill bikers aren’t allowed to bike on the inside against the mountain, we have to move to the outer edge of the road. It’s a little scary but it makes it’s safer for the vehicles so that they can pass safely.

Me on the death road.. :)

Me on a wide part of the death road.. :)

Having a water break on the death road

Having a water break on the death road

The end of the road we arrive in Coroico at 1200 metres, where it’s really warm! Such a difference, we left winter and arrived in summer! We had a buffet and then I jumped in the outside swimming pool there : ) So nice to not be cold! Hehe.

Having our lunch on like 1200 metres... where it's 25 degrees, sunny and hot!! :)

Having our lunch on Coroico… where it’s 25 degrees, sunny and hot!! :) P.S a HUGE butterfly was circuling there, it looks like a bat on the pic, you see where they are looking? just above one girls head.

Then we had like a 3 hour ride back home to our hostel, we arrived quite tired.. Ad had hurt his arm on the road, nothing too serious but still enough to not be able to bend the arm. He went to bed early to rest and slept like 12 hours, haha. I was thinking first about going out to a club where one of our guides were a DJ, but then I got really lazy too, so nice to lay on the bed skyping with Duilio.. : )

Next post will be about the free walking tour and the vertical route!

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Lovely La Paz and biking The Death Road

  1. Har inte lyckats se din sida p ett tag. Hade nu mycket lsning att ta igen. Mycket ventyr du fr vara med om.

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