La Paz- the highest capital city in the world

Trip Start Oct 01, 2012
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Trip End Oct 01, 2015


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Flag of Bolivia  , La Paz Dept,
Friday, November 9, 2012

The journey from copacabana to la paz was definitely up there with one of the weirdest journeys we've been on.
After driving around the lake for a while a guy got up and said something to us all in Spanish. We followed everyone else off the bus to a little ticket office where we had to buy a "ferry" ticket to take us across the lake. The buses we were told would be going on different "ferry's". Now I use the word ferry very loosely. They were basically big planks of wood with a motor attached to them and the buses would drive onto them and a man would control the motor and steer these planks of wood - which were definitely close to sinking- to the other side. We watched in awe as maybe 10 large tourist buses floated across to the other side of the lake. We then jumped back onto the bus and off we went. After all that excitement I was exhausted and so slept the rest of the journey except for when the bus pulled over for us to see la Paz for the first time.
Apparently la paz city is built in the crater of an old volcano and so the city is surrounded by hills on all sides.
We had decided to give the wild rover hostel a chance to see what all the fuss was about. We stayed there 2 nights and we still don't know.
We were shown to our room, the dorms here don't even have locks on them! And around the hostel, all the while the guy was saying all your going to want to do is sleep and party here, we have the craziest parties here, just look how much fun everyone is having etc etc.
Once we'd got our room we decided we weren't ready for any wild rover fun just yet and so headed out for dinner. We'd heard the party doesn't really get started till late so we thought we probably should check out the hostel bar for a few to begin with.
A few turned into lots needless to say. The wild rover bar is literally my idea of hell- Carly Rae jepsons - don't call me maybe? On repeat whilst Irish girls and boys jump on the bar pouring cheap weak booze in everyone's mouths- not the kind of place I pictured we'd be drinking in in south America, it was like a lloyds pub but probably worse. There was no other option though other than to embrace it and so we got our drink on and ended up talking to some Chilean tattoo artists that were in la Paz for the weekend.
The following morning feeling worse for wear we decided we needed out of wild rover and so headed into the main centre had some food, enquired about tours for the next few days and found ourselves a cheaper hotel.
We decided that we were going to do a number of tours, mountain biking the death road, climbing huyana potosi mountain and taking a boat into the jungle along the river instead of getting the bus. I'd been inspired you see by a book I'd just read of an Israeli guy who went into the jungle without a guide with 3 friends... It went horribly wrong - hopefully our trip won't!! The only available date for the mountain that fitted in with our plans was for the following day so we booked it along with the boat tour and mountain biking the death road blowing our budget totally out of the water but hey it's going to be a great couple of weeks.
That night we stocked up on altitude sickness pills and other pharmaceutical drugs and went for dinner at a Indian that promised curries as good as the ones from home- they definitely weren't as good. We headed back to the hostel for an early night so we were ready for the following day.
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