La Paz to Uyuni | A complete guide

Updated: 02 July 2019

Here you will find a complete guide which will provide all the information you need to book your transport to Uyuni, what to do you when you arrive in Uyuni, how to get around, and how to plan for your salts flat tour, as well as information for after your tour.

If you’re traveling through South America, you surely do not want to miss these two destinations: Salar de Uyuni is the largest salt flats on Earth with 12,000 km2 of salt extending in all visible directions.

This guide will cover the following:

  1. How to get to Uyuni from La Paz
  2. What to do in Uyuni
  3. How to book your Uyuni salt flats tour
  4. How to choose the right tour for you
  5. Other useful general information
alone vicuna in the desert Sud-Lipez
A vicuna – Photo: Lesly Derksen via Unsplash

1. How to get to Uyuni

There are 3 ways to travel from La Paz to Uyuni:

  1. Making a direct trip by bus.
  2. Going by bus from La Paz to Oruro and then from Oruro to Uyuni by train.
  3. By plane (direct flight).

Bus from La Paz to Uyuni

There are many La Paz to Uyuni bus options. Tickets Bolivia works with Panasur, Trans Omar, Cruz del Norte and Trans Titicaca, all trustworthy and reliable companies that offer clients good quality services. Their schedules are the following. All these buses are night bus:

Company Bus class Route Time of departure and arrival Prices in US Dollars
Trans Omar Semi lie-flat/Lie-flat 3 rows Direct service 20:00/6:00 (+1 day( $14.60/21.90
Panasur Lie-flat Direct service 20:00/6:00 (+1 day) $14.60/21.90
Cruz del Norte Semi lie-flat/Lie-flat Direct service 20:30/6:30 (+1 day) $14.60/21.90
Trans Titicaca Lie flat Direct service 22:00/7:00 (+1 day) $29.93

All the buses leave from the main bus terminal of La Paz, located between Avenida Peru and Avenida Uruguay. The bus station is located here: https://ticketsbolivia.com.bo/googlemaps/terminal_la_paz.php

Uyuni has no proper bus terminal, but it has a street where buses depart from and arrive at. Here is the map and street address: https://ticketsbolivia.com.bo/googlemaps/terminal_uyuni.php


  • These companies don’t offer food or refreshment during the trip. Sometimes they will take sellers on board offering drinks or food, this is a common custom for buses in Bolivia. Sometimes they will also stop to pick passengers or packages along the way.
  • Buses should come with heating and blankets as the journey gets cold at night on the altiplano but it is better to always come prepared. It will also be very cold (whatever the time of year) when arriving in Uyuni at 5:30-6:00 so better have warm layers.
  • There are other bus companies doing this route, another very good company that offers a more tourist bus experience is Todo Turismo with buses leaving at 21:00 every day and tickets costing about 37 us$.

Train from La Paz to Uyuni (via Oruro)

With this option, passengers have to travel first from La Paz to Oruro by bus (the cost is around 5 US$) and then take the train to Uyuni. 

1- Buses depart from La Paz to Oruro every 30 minutes from the bus terminal of La Paz (see map above). The trip lasts around four hours and the buses arrive at the bus terminal of Oruro, located on Gregorio Reynolds Av. The cost of the bus should be about 30-35 bolivianos. Here is the map: https://ticketsbolivia.com.bo/googlemaps/terminal_oruro.php

2 -Once you are in Oruro, you must take a taxi to the train station, located on Avenida Velasco Galvarro.

The trains that travel from Oruro to Uyuni are Wara Wara del Sur and Expreso del Sur, they are both owned by Ferroviaria Andina and people can choose between two different classes: 2nd class and Executive.

Wara Wara del Sur leaves on Wednesdays and Sundays at 19:00, arriving in Uyuni at 02:20 in the morning. Expreso del Sur leaves on Tuesdays and Fridays at 14:00, arriving in Uyuni at 21:20. 

This option allows the traveler to enjoy the trip by train and to travel during the day so to enjoy the views of the altiplano. It is a longer journey but it also allows passengers to rest the night before their tour. The trains also have a restaurant wagon where they can purchase drink and food during their journey. 

Flamingos, Bolivia – Photo: Giorgia Romiti via Unsplash

Flights from La Paz to Uyuni

There are two Bolivian airlines doing this route with the following departure times:

  • BoA – Boliviana de Aviacion : 8:40
  • Amaszonas: 06:30, 09:50, 19:15, 20:30

The flight lasts about an hour and departure are in the mornings and the evenings. The prices start at about 95 US$ and up to 170 US$ for one way. Flying has the advantage of being the fastest option. Flights are scheduled early and later in the day so travelers can catch their tour the same day and return the same day after the tour ends. See below more information on the Uyuni tours. 

2. What to do in Uyuni

Buses arrive early in the morning – the first buses usually arrive at around 5:30 but it can be earlier. Passengers have time to charge their phones, eat something and buy whatever is needed before the tour, or book a tour if they haven’t done it. Agencies open at around 7:00 and tours leave at around 10:00. Until then there are options of coffee shops with Wi-Fi and hot drinks/food open from 5:00 to accommodate early arrivals.

The train arrives later at night (Trains arrive either at 21:20 or 2:20 in the morning) so it is recommended to book accommodation before hand. The train station is located in the center of Uyuni so you can easily book a hotel nearby.

The airport is located very near the town, most tour agencies will pick up passengers at the airport directly before the tour and drop them off there after. Otherwise there will be ways of transportation available to take you to your accommodation.

Here are some good food options if you are in Uyuni and are looking for a place to eat while you wait for your next bus/train/flight:

Breakfast Nonis: Opens early in the morning so you can go straight here after the long bus ride and warm with a hot drink and some simple food. The WiFi works well and there are plugs to charge your phone.

Minuteman Revolutionary Pizza: Located inside a hotel in the center of Uyuni, this pizza place is the perfect stop after your tour while waiting for your bus. It has a good selection of pizzas which also happen to be very good.

Lliphi: This is another very good option to wait during the afternoon. This restaurant/cafe-bistro has food, music, drinks and board games which will keep you occupied while you wait.

Tika: A more upscale option, this restaurant has a nice atmosphere and good-quality dishes.

Extreme Fun Pub: Like its name, this is a fun place meet fellow travelers if you happen to spend the night in Uyuni and are looking for a party and good drinks.

Landrover in the desert, Bolivi
Photo: Peter Conlan via Unsplash

3. How to book your Uyuni salt flats tour

Tours can be booked online, in La Paz or directly in Uyuni when arriving in the morning. When in Uyuni, from as early as 5:00, tour agents will come forward trying to sell you a tour. It’s best to have an idea of which tour agencies you want to go to and go there directly to inquire for availability and prices.

But first, should you book your tour in advance? You can book your tour online or in La Paz or any travel agency in the country. If you want to have your trip planned and not worry about it, it is the best option. It is also recommended to book ahead if traveling in a large group. (Cars can carry up to 6 passengers – not including the driver). If you are travelling solo or with one other person, you can easily find space directly in Uyuni as agencies will be trying to fill their cars and bargain the prices due to the high competition.

In the case that you haven’t booked a tour yet, there are over 100 tour agencies and it can be overwhelming to have to choose between all the choices. Here are some tips to help you choose which company to travel with in Uyuni:

  • Do some research about the tour agencies online, TripAdvisor is a reliable source of information as well as other traveler’s forums. When you have found some options go around and check for prices, tour descriptions and availability, compare the different operators before making a decision. If you are in Uyuni, tours will leave around 10:00 so there is plenty of time to choose. Don’t feel rushed to decide on the spot.
  • The average price for a shared 3-day tour with a Spanish-speaking driver is about 750-800 bolivianos (115 US$). It is not recommended to go for a cheaper option as this could mean unsafe travel conditions. If you are paying for a more expensive tour make sure to know what are the added extras (usually English-speaking driver and private rooms). Paying more could just mean slightly better food and a bottle of wine in the evening so make sure to know exactly what you are paying for and decide if it’s worth it.
  • You will need to have water, good sunglasses, a hat, warm clothing, a sleeping bag which can usually be rented with your tour agent.
  • Car can carry 7 people maximum (including the driver). Do not pick a tour agency that says otherwise and who is willing take more people.
  • Bring cash with you as ATMs don’t always work in Uyuni and there is no place to exchange money. Tour agencies will accept US dollars and Bolivianos but the exchange rate may not be as good as in La Paz.

4. How to choose the right tour for you

There are about 4 different options for your Uyuni tour.

1 – One-day tour

First, and a very popular option is the one-day tour that can come with variations depending on the season with sunrise or sunset and even stargazing options. I would recommend this option only if your time/budget is limited and you absolutely have no other option. Tours will start at around 10:00 in the morning and return right after sunset. Most tours will take you to the train cemetery, Colchani, and then head to the salar for lunch. The afternoon is dedicated to taking the traditional fun pictures and a visit to the Tunupa volcano where there are good viewpoints and archaeological sites to explore.

2 – Three-day tour

The most popular option is the three-day tour. The tours follow the same route with small variations. On the first day you will go to the salt flats and spend most of the afternoon there before heading to your accommodation right after sunset. The first night is spent in a salt hostel at the edge of the salar with amenities varying depending on the tour booked.

The second is a lot of driving towards the National Reserve Eduardo Abaroa, you will see active volcanoes, lagoons and beautiful landscapes. The highlight of that day is the Laguna Colorada where tours stop the longest. This is usually the last stop of the day and accommodation the second is usually more rustic and at an higher altitude (around 4.700 meters above sea level) making it the coldest night of the trip.

On the third day you will most likely head before down to the geysers and then go to the hot springs where you can bathe, have breakfast and rest before the last stop of the tour. At Laguna Verde located very near the border with Chile the groups split; those wanting to continue to Chile will cross the border and the others will return to Uyuni. The rest of the day is mostly drive with stops for lunch and special sights. The cars take a different route to go back. Tours return to Uyuni at around 16:30-17:00.

3 – Two-day and four-day tours

These options are not always offered by agencies as a shared tour. If you are traveling in a group of 6, you can easily arrange a private tour and select what you want to see and do.

If you can’t afford a private tour, some companies do offer these as shared tours. You can find some of these options here. If you are interested in these options it is better to do some research beforehand and book it before getting to Uyuni as you may not be able to find what you want on the day.

Also please note that there are 4-day tours from Tupiza (instead of Uyuni) which are also a good alternative for those who want a slightly different and more complete experience. These tours are slightly more expensive since they can only accommodate groups of 5 per car. The tour comes with a driver/guide and a cook. Also because they are less popular, fewer agencies operate them but they are of generally good quality. They also have the advantage to hit all the touristic stops at a different time than the tours coming from Uyuni or San Pedro de Atacama, which means that you can enjoy them with significantly less people.

5. Other useful general information

  • The high season is in December-January and July-August. Prices can be higher due to the high affluence of tourists during these months.
  • Temperatures get really cold during the tour, especially if you do the 3-day tour on the second night. July and August are winter month and temperatures can drop to -20°C or -4°F. Tours can rent you a sleeping bag but bring warm layers.
  • You will be affected by the altitude, especially for those who recently arrived in Bolivia and didn’t adjust properly. On the second and third day, tours go up to 5,000 meters above sea level. This affects the body on different levels, starting with headaches and trouble digesting. It is all completely normal but to avoid getting sick during the tour it is recommended to eat light, drink a lot and avoid alcohol.
  • Bring protection from the sun, sunglasses are indispensable but also protect your head and skin.
  • Five liters of water are recommended per person for a three-day tour.
  • You can start the tour from Uyuni, Tupiza or San Pedro de Atacama. Tours from San Pedro de Atacama follow the same itinerary as the tours from Uyuni, except in the reverse order: the last day is spent on the salt flats and transfer is possible to Uyuni.
  • During the rainy season (November to April/May), parts of the salt flats can be flooded causing changes to the itinerary as it is impossible to access some sites. However, the rainy season has the advantage to have the mirror effect happen where the sky reflects on the inundated white surface.

We hope the information is useful. You can buy bus tickets online and with plenty of time beforehand in order to plan your trip at www.ticketsbolivia.com. If you have any doubts, please contact us at info@ticketsbolivia.com.

The largest bus terminal in the country is inaugurated

The Metropolitan Bus Terminal was inaugurated this wednesday, February 10, in the city of El Alto. It is the largest bus terminal in the country and the second largest in Latin America after the Sao Paulo terminal in Brasil.

Opening ceremony of the Metropolitan Bus Terminal

With an investment of around 250 million Bolivians, this modern terminal is built on a large area approximately the size of 12 regulatory soccer fields. Among its most outstanding features are: a heliport that will be used for medical emergencies, a hotel available for passengers and drivers who wish to stay one night, and mechanical workshops for fleet maintenance.

It also has parking spaces for 300 private vehicles, 58 spaces for the buses that are waiting for passengers to board, an exclusive area for parcel and shipping services, and offices available for police, immigration, children’s advocates and customs personnel.

Metropolitan Terminal of El Alto (source: Página Siete)

In this bus terminal you can find not only interdepartamental transport service, but also international service with ticket office spaces for 72 bus companies. It also has a particular architectural appeal with a 630 linear meter hanging walkway that makes it the largest in the country.

Relaxation spaces for passengers and their companions with a micro-market, food court, cultural area for artistic presentatios and space for the sale of handicrafts and souvenirs. You can find this modern terminal in the Bolivar D area, on Ladislao Cabrera avenue: map.

It is expected that by May of this year a large part of the transportation companies will already operate from this terminal and there will be an internal flow thanks to a public invitation for companies whishing to settle in this terminal.

La Paz – Cochabamba, the busiest route in Bolivia

The trip between the cities of La Paz and Cochabamba is one of the most important in the country. A significant number of people make this journey daily with travel options at different times throughout the day and night. Below we share the travel options you have on this route and some tourist attractions that you can visit in each city.

Cochabamba, Bolivia.

The distance between both cities is about 350 km. and throughout the trip there is an ascent or descent of about 1000m. since the city of La Paz is at an altitude of 3640m.s.n.m. and Cochabamba at 2574m.s.n.m. The city of La Paz is characterized by its steep streets and the descent from the city of El Alto to the La Paz ollada. Cochabamba, on the other hand, is located in the valley and a large part of the city is flat, one of its characteristics is being the gastronomic capital of the country.

The travel time on this route can vary from 7 to 8 hours depending on the departure time and all buses make a stop in the middle of the journey where passengers can buy a snack and use the bathroom. Take advantage of the discounts of Tickets Bolivia for January on this route.

From La Paz to Cochabamba

The buses leave from the bus terminal in La Paz located on Av. Perú; you can enter the following link for the exact location. The travel options are as follows:

Bus CompanyTypeDepartureArrivalPrice
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)07:30am15:30pm106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)11:30am19:30pm106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)16:00pm00:00am106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)20:30pm04:30am106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana 1 MEMLie-flat (80°)21:00pm05:00am106Bs.
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)21:30pm05:30am106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana 1 MEMLie-flat (80°)22:00pm06:00am106Bs.

From Cochabamba to La Paz

On this route, the buses depart from the Cochabamba bus terminal located on Av. Ayacucho; you can enter the following link for your exact location. The schedules and travel options are as follows:

Bus CompanyTypeDepartureArrivalPrice
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)07:30am15:30pm106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)11:30am19:30pm106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)21:00pm05:00am106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana 1 MEMLie-flat (80°)21:00pm05:00am106Bs.
Trans Copacabana SALie-flat (80°)22:00pm06:00am106Bs. 74Bs.
Trans Copacabana 1 MEMLie-flat (80°)22:00pm06:00am106Bs.

Some tourist attractions in La Paz

La Paz has been named one of the 7 wonder cities of the world in 2014 by the New 7 Wonders group thanks to various attractions not only from the colonial era but also current attractions. We present some activities you can do in the wonder city:

Visit the witches market located in the center of the city, behind the church of San Francisco, one of the most visited places by tourists. There you can find amulets, traditional mixes and products to make offerings to mother earth, known as Pachamama.

Take a tour from the air throughout the city using the Mi Teleférico transport service that has 8 lines from the neighboring city of El Alto to the southern part of the city of La Paz. You can board the cabins from the city center, Periferica, Sopocachi, Obrajes, Av. Arce, Irpavi, among others.

About 40 minutes from the city center is the unmissable Valley of the Moon, this site acquires its name thanks to the geological characteristics of the terrain with a landscape out of this world. Choose between taking a short tour of about 40 minutes or a longer one of about 2 hours.

Viewpoint Killi Killi. La Paz, Bolivia.

The city of La Paz takes advantage of the characteristic geological ollada it has to have several viewpoints that are easily accessible and very close to the city center. The most visited viewpoints are those of Killi Killi located in the Periférica area, Pura Pura located in the area of the same name and Laicacota, the most central viewpoint of the city on Av. del Ejército.

Some tourist attractions in Cochabamba

Visit the Palacio Portales, the former residence of Simón Iturri Patiño, one of the richest people in the world in the 1930s. Located in 10 hectares of gardens, the mansion was never occupied and is now a Cultural and Pedagogical Center.

If you are looking to buy clothes, accessories, gifts and electronic items; don’t hesitate to stop by La Cancha, one of the largest open-air markets in South America. You find it open every day of the week.

Cristo de la Concordia. Cochabamba, Bolivia.

Take the cable car or walk up to the Cristo de la Concordia, a statue of Jesus located atop the hill of San Pedro. From the top you have an unmissable view of Cochabamba. The monument itself has a total height of 40 meters and is larger than the Christ the Redeemer in Sao Paulo.

Tips for bus travel in times of Covid-19

Tourism has been one of the sectors most affected by the coronavirus and recreational travel has taken a back seat. Now that travel in Latin America is normalizing, after a reduction in daily contagion cases, many people wonder: How can I travel in the middle of a pandemic?

In this blog we share with you some of the recommendations that we were able to collect from international Institutes and Control Centers that published various guides and suggestions for taking bus trips during the pandemic.

General recommendations

First we will talk a little about the general recommendations and measures that are maintained to avoid contagion in any situation. These are rigorous hygiene habits that have been shown to help prevent the spread of the virus.

One of the main recommendations is to use a mask at all times while you are away from home. There are different types of masks, the most effective is called N95, which filters 95% of airborne particles; It is also recommended to use surgical masks, which are quite effective and finally, if you wear a fabric mask, it is recommended that it be made of at least two layers of fabric.

Another important recommendation is frequent hand washing, this is effective since the virus is covered by a protective layer of fat; when we wash our hands we remove that protective layer of fat and the virus dies. It is also advisable to have a gel hand sanitizer, wet towels or a spray with a 70% alcohol solution with you for when you cannot access a sink.

You should also avoid touching your eyes, mouth or nose when you are in the street. If you need to cough or sneeze, it is important to do so by covering your mouth with the inside of your elbow, in this way you avoid the spread of particles in the air and these remain in an area with which you usually have little contact.

Finally, we recommend that you avoid the affective greeting with people, say hello from afar, avoiding contact with either cheeks or hands. An alternative that is frequently seen is the salute with the elbow or perhaps with the feet, but a simple gesture of the hand is enough. Likewise, you must maintain a distance of 2 meters with other people.

Recommendations for bus travel

Transportation companies are taking their own prevention measures governed by the authorities now that some of their services have been enabled. In general, they are making the trip with a reduced capacity; buses travel at 50 to 60% of their total capacity. They are cleaned and disinfected completely after each trip and the bus staff must wear a mask as a requirement.

Bus desinfection in terminal

Now we will give you recommendations to travel as safely as possible by bus and avoid contagion as much as possible. Something very important to take into account is that zero risk does not exist, however, with these tips the risk will be considerably reduced:

Evaluate the reasons for your trip

At this time it is important to take into account the reasons why you are making the trip. Is it a vacation trip to relax? Do you feel like traveling after being locked in your house all year? Or maybe is it an important business trip? The ideal is to avoid trips made for leisure or relaxation and only travel if necessary.

Another important aspect to take into account is your health, if you have a risky disease or are among people with high risk, it is best to avoid travel. Also take into account the people who travel with you.

We know that you are tired of seeing the same street every day and now that some trips have been enabled you are surely looking to take advantage of this and travel to get out of the ordinary. We recommend you to do tourism within your city, we are sure that there are several places that you still have to visit. If you really want to travel, find a place nearby.

Choose a safe destination

You must be adequately informed about the epidemiological situation of the destination, as well as the entry restrictions. The more cases of COVID-19 there are at the destination, the greater the likelihood of becoming infected while traveling and spreading the virus to others upon return. On the World Health Organization website you can see the Dashboard with the destination’s situation in relation to COVID-19. We recommend you check the countries that are going through a new wave of infections and avoid traveling there.

Avoid traveling to places where you have to make many stops or stops. It is preferable to travel to destinations close to your city and avoid moving to far away places. Once at your destination, we recommend doing activities that are outdoors and avoiding closed places with several people.

Make the purchase of your tickets safely

Once you have decided your destination, it is time to buy the tickets. To avoid crowds and physical contact for money exchange, we recommend buying your tickets online. In the Tickets Bolivia portal you can purchase tickets with a credit or debit card, through PayPal or by bank deposit. In this way you avoid direct contact with people.

It is also important to choose the time of travel. It is advisable to avoid traveling in peak hours such as early in the morning or late at night, where many people decide to make the trip. You can wait a couple of hours and make the trip to avoid contact with more people.

At the time of travel

The time to travel has come, you must take into account all the general recommendations that we gave you in the first instance such as the use of a mask and you can also use a face shield to take better care of yourself during the trip. Do not forget to wash your hands before and after entering the bus.

Try to travel in the window and open it a little during the trip. This allows constant air circulation within the bus. Finally, we advise you to make the trip with gloves; in this way you avoid contact with the surfaces inside the bus. Once you wash your hands before boarding the bus, you can put on your gloves and take them off at the destination to re-disinfect or wash your hands.

We hope that these tips have been of great help to you and that you take them into account when making your bus trips. Do not forget to take care of yourself at all times and be ready to travel in any situation.

Top 4 reasons to travel Bolivia by bus

As air travel is expensive for most bolivians, and trains do not reach most destinations, bus travel is essential for the transportation of passengers and products in this country. In fact, bus travel is the most common form of public transportation in Bolivia and in South America, both for short-distance and long-distance travel.

paisaje altiplano
Bolivian Altiplano (www.panoramio.com)  

South America is a region of contrasts, and road conditions, too, vary between countries and regions, and even within a country. In Bolivia there are roads that are paved and in good condition, and others that, due to the landscapes they cross, are subject to landslides or flooding, and are more difficult to maintain, especially during rain season (December-February).  

Just as road conditions vary, so does the quality of bus services, depending on the destination to which you are traveling. The more popular destinations tend to have better buses; more remote or less “touristy” destinations may not have very good quality buses to take you there.

All things considered, traveling by bus is one of the most affordable ways to get around Bolivia, and it offers the view of landscapes and cultural experience that you would otherwise miss. So here are our top 4 reasons for traveling through Bolivia by bus:


1. The environment

Did you know that buses have the smallest carbon footprint of all transportation services? Its true. Cars, trains and planes are all more costly to the environment than buses. One bus can replace 3 cars and spends 60% less energy per passenger mile than trains. In recent years, Bolivia has experienced a modernization of its transportation services, so the buses offered by transportation companies are every time more energy-efficient and environmentaly friendly.

2. Cost-effective

Traveling by bus is the cheapest way to get around South America in general, but this is even more so in Bolivia, where bus tickets are way cheaper than in countries like Argentina, Chile and Peru. Although bus companies raise their prices during high season, and prices can even sometimes change from one day to another according to demmand, the prices of tickets are consistently cheaper than in neighboring countries. For example, bus tickets from Uyuni (one of the hottest tourist destinations in Bolivia) to Potosi can cost around 5 dollars in a good-quality bus. So, traveling bolivia by bus helps you save cash you can spend on something else.

There’s also been a control over the prices for the main destinations in Bolivia. The ticket has a price limit stablished by the goverment for each route. Say what you want about buses, but at the end of the day, bus tickets are much cheaper than any airfare you will find and with buses, what you see is what you get; everything is included in the price you originally paid.

The Old road to Los Yungas, La Paz, Bolivia

3. Scenery

Pretty simple: If you travel by bus you will see landscapes you would miss if you traveled by plane. You get to enjoy the great scenery while traveling: the incredible mountains of purple and green and pink stone on the way from La Paz to Uyuni; the Bolivian Altiplano flatlands with faraway snowcapped mountains; the valleys of Sucre; the tropical jungle you cross on the way from Cochabamba to Santa Cruz; the tropical mountain forests of the Los Yungas regions. Traveling by bus is the only way to take in many of these sights.

Unlike in airlines, a bus travel allows you to view the beauty of the countryside while traveling. When using an airplane, you will not have much of a scenery apart from the clouds that you will see all through your journey.

National Road in Bolivia with the snowy Sajama.

4. Accessibility

Bus travel is ideal for the adventurers at heart. There are so many small towns with a rich history and national parks that are just waiting to be explored and you can’t easily get to most of those by plane.

So you want to get off the beaten path? Are you interested in going places that most tourist haven’t even heard of? Then going there by bus may very well be your only choice. Air travel in Bolivia is pretty limited, and trains only reach very few destinations. But if there is a road, there is a bus. So plan your bus travels and go where (not many) have gone before!

Travel in Bolivia by bus

One way to travel economically and efficiently is by bus. In Bolivia it is one of the most common ways of transporting between cities or provinces. The buses cover practically all the tourist routes within the country and you can find departure times of your choice. Below we explain how to buy bus tickets to travel in Bolivia in a safe, relaxed and economical way.

Traveling by bus allows you to appreciate the great road landscapes that Bolivia has to offer. Also, did you know that buses have a smaller carbon footprint in transportation? a bus can replace 3 cars and uses about 60% less energy per passenger-mile than traveling by train. So you not only enjoy a rest and a walk with the best views, you also help the environment with your decision to travel by bus.

Bolivian Altiplano (www.panoramio.com)


Online purchases give you the facility of being able to do them from home or wherever you are, without having to go to the terminal and buy the ticket in person, thus avoiding the crowds. Also, buying online you can do it in advance of up to a year before your trip.

You can buy bus tickets online. In the Tickets Bolivia portal you can find information about the travel options, costs and schedules available and make the direct purchase of tickets through the internet.

If you do not have a credit or debit card enabled for online purchases, you can also make the purchase through a bank deposit if you are within Bolivia. If you have any questions about the purchase to be made, you can contact the company at their contact numbers to ensure the trip and the available options.

At the terminal

Of course you can also buy tickets from the same departure terminal. This is a common way to do shopping and you should normally go to the terminal the same day of the trip and even when you are ready with your suitcases to leave and see the options you have in the terminal. Normally you cannot buy tickets days in advance at terminals in Bolivia.

Bus Terminal. La Paz, Bolivia.

The cost of the terminal tickets may be lower, but in high season the prices are usually the same as online. You can also secure a space on the bus by buying in advance.

Precautionary measures

Little by little, trips between departments and provinces within Bolivia are being enabled, and it will not take long for the borders to be opened to public transport. Given this, transport companies are taking the necessary measures to operate safely.

The buses travel with 50 to 60% of their total capacity ensuring the necessary social distancing, in addition, they are completely disinfected after each trip made. To board the bus it is mandatory to wear a mask and to have hand sanitizer with you. You can also access this disinfectant on the bus.

Bus disinfection. (APG, http://www.periodicobolivia.com.bo)

Now that the routes and services are enabled, you can travel maintaining the necessary caution and buying your tickets from home to avoid crowds and maintain the required distance.

Top 4 reasons to book bus and train tickets online

Tourists of the world are quickly turning towards booking everything online, from plane tickets, to hotels and tours. In Latin America, the options for booking bus and train tickets online are not widely available, but buying online has many advantages, even when it is not the most common alternative. Why buy tickets online? Here are our three top reasons.


No matter why you travel, or for how long, most travelers visiting South America are not only on a budget, they’re on a schedule. You have precious days at each destination, and every moment counts. Booking online helps you plan your trip for more time-efficiency. You don’t want to spend the little time you have in a city going to the Bus Terminal the day before you plan to travel, finding out if there are tickets available, buying the tickets (if they are available) and then going there again the next day to take your bus. When you buy online, you are guaranteed a seat on the bus, and you just need to arrive 30 minutes before, check your luggage and are set to go. No extra time. Plus, you can book your tickets online at your convenience, off business hours; studies show most people have more time to shop and do research online late at night or early in the morning. When you book online you access a 24 hour service.



Yes, when you buy online you pay a fee. But if you’re planning to travel in high season months (July-August, November-January) and you book online, you avoid the price hikes that are common to all bus and train companies and that can reach up to 50% or more. So buying online can end up saving you money, even after the fee, which is around 20% of the cost of the ticket. Plus, you get to pick your seats before anyone else with some bus companies. For example, when you buy through Tickets Bolivia, you have the option of writing us an email with your seat preferences, and these will be made known to the bus or train company in order to be able to accommodate you.


So you are an adventurer. You want to keep the planning to a minimum so you can arrange your itinerary as you go along. No problem. Buying online through a company like Tickets Bolivia allows you all the flexibility you need. Once your ticket is booked, you can change the date of your trip, the time of departure and even the route. We do ask you to request for these changes with at least 48 hours prior to your original departure so we can accommodate you. For all of the purchased tickets that were canceled due to the covid-19 infection we offered to change the departure date without extra cost or a refund of the ticket, something that would be harder to do if you purchase the tickets directly from the terminal in advance.



When you travel, you worry about safety. Buying online is safe in many ways. First, when you do it through a company like Tickets Bolivia, that works with recognized payment companies such as PayPal, you are ensured the safety of your transaction. You also avoid handling large sums of cash at the bus terminals, which everyone knows are places where one should always be careful. Also, when you buy online there is a company that has your data and is aware of your travel plans. If there should be an incident such as road blockades, or if there is a problem with the bus company, Tickets Bolivia will get in touch with you to explain the situation and work with you to find a solution. And finally, buying online ensures you maintain the social distance and precautions needed. We got your back.

5 tips to beat pre-trip anxiety before traveling to Bolivia

Even those who love traveling can fall prey to pre-trip anxiety once in a while. Will you be safe? Will you be able to work and stay in touch with loved ones from your destination? Should you be traveling somewhere else, instead? Should you be traveling alone?  Just because you have these feelings doesn´t mean you should not travel. But you should definitely take them into account, find out what is triggering them, and take measures to put your mind at ease. In this post we share with you five tips (and a bonus) for doing just that.


  1. Identify the source of anxiety

It´s important to figure out the source of what’s bothering you, to see if there are any measures you can take to feel better about the trip. Are you nervous about being robbed? Not being able to communicate with anyone? Are you afraid of flying? Or that you’ll be lonely? Do you think you’ll miss an important event at home?

Once you identify the source, see what you can do to fix it. Would you feel more confident about not getting your stuff stolen if you bought a camera bag that locked? If you’re nervous about meeting people, you could post a message on the local Couchsurfing group or book yourself into a dorm or private room at a social hostel.

With traveling so affected recently by the closing of borders and cancellation of flights and other services, it´s normal to feel nervous that your trip could suffer unforeseen changes. To be safe, you shoud deffinitelly buy travel incurance. Check out this article about the best travel isnurance companies for packpackers.


Sometimes, the only problem is you´re worried about the unknown, and that is normal. But then, going out into the unknown is probably why you travel in the first place. To help ease the anxiety, it´s important to follow our next tip:

  1. Do your research 

If what is bothering you has to do with lack of information, then getting information is essencial. If not knowing is a problem, then plan at least the first days of your trip in detail, just to put your mind at ease. You can always cancel tours, move to another hostel, or go somewhere else once you´re feeling more confident.


So, find out about the best hotels, the safest tours, what the people are like, cultural dos and dont´s, how you should dress. Answer questions such as: are there ATMs? Can you pay with debit or credit cards? What are the safest neighborhoods? What local food should you eat and what should you avoid?

Of course, find out what health measures you should take. For example, if you´re traveling to Bolivia or Peru, you might be uneasy about the altitude (3600 meters above sea level in La Paz). Check out this article about how to deal with it and stay safe. Once you have all the information, you´re ready for our next tip:

  1. Plan (and book) ahead

Aside from relieving anxiety and stress, planing and booking ahead can be a great source of pre-trip joy. Like we said before, planing the first few days in detail can help you feel secure.

So, what will you do as soon as you step off the bus or plane? Decide now if you will want to change money at the airport/bus terminal, or can wait to do it downtown. How will you get to your hotel or hostel? In Bolivia, the covid-19 crisis has made traveling in public transportation a less safe option, so we recomend you book a hotel that can send a cab to get you from the airport. They follow all the mesures to ensure bio-safety.


Ok, so, you´re at your hotel. What then? Depending on what time you arrive, you might want to rest and leave the sightseeing for the next day. You can book a tour of the city to get your bearings in a controled way. No matter which city in Bolivia you are visiting, click here for a comprehensive list of certified tours you can book right away.

Same thing goes if you are traveling by bus. You can buy your bus and train tickets online for dozens of destinations in Bolivia  and to neighboring countries. Just click here, write in your origin and destination and the date you want to travel. You will be able to compare prices and services and choose the best option for you.

But, wait. Are you anxious too much planning wil stifle your freedom? Are you not ready to commit to a tight schedule? Well, that takes us to the next tip:

  1. Know you can always change your mind or cancel

Planning and booking ahead is a tool you use to ensure you get a room you like and you have your tickets secured for your trip, as well as giving you a feeling of safety and control. But this is your trip. You can cancel a hotel booking after a few days if you don´t feel comfortable, or have found a place that better suits your needs. You can cancel bus and train tickets and get most of your money back, as long as you do it 48 hours before the trip. Same thing applies for tours.

Of course, if you are tight on cash, your cancelling options might be fewer. But, if you book with Tickets Bolivia, you can even just change the destination or date of your trip, so you don´t need to cancel but you still enjoy the freedom of improvising as you go along.

You can do whatever you want on this trip. You can be more adventurous, or more easygoing. You can be social or a loner. You can have the  peace of mind that comes with booking everything ahead, with the thrill of making your trip your own as you go along.


  1. Bring extra cash for safer options

Speaking of tight on cash, it is a very real thing that you should have extra cash you can count on in order to stay safe, especially if you are having doubts about the trip.

Safety and freedom to change your mind are things you should really invest in.  For example, if you need to take a cab because you don´t feel comfortable walking or taking public transportation, or booking into a more expensive but safer hotel, or cancelling a bus ticket without the possibility of a refund because you simply changed your mind.


You may never need to use it, but you will be reassured just knowing that the extra money is there to spend it if you need it.

  1. Bonus tip: know you will probably be glad you came

99.9% of the time, you’ll be glad you came. You will look around you at the landscape, the view, the food in front of you, the new friends you´ve made and say to yourself: I´m so glad I went on this trip. But often you don’t realize that until you’re on the ground in your destination. Feeling the different temperature, the language of people, the streets full of different smells and colors. That may be all that it takes to remind yourself why you love traveling in the first place.

Uyuni Salt Flat (by Gaby Iturri)

Of course, there are occasional instances when cancelling a trip altogether is the right way to go. Maybe the time is not right and you can make this trip later in the year. Maybe it´s something else you need to solve. In any case, se hope these tips are useful for making up your mind.

5 of the most amazing cities to visit in South America

South America has some of the most amazing cities in the world. Can you imagine traveling by land from Sao Paulo, the biggest city in the region, to Buenos Aires, the Paris of South America, to La Paz, the highest altitude capital city on earth, to Cusco, the party capital of Peru, ending in Lima, the city by the sea where trying the food is enough reason to stay? In this post, we tell you about six of the most amazing cities in South America and how to get from one to the other, crossing the entire continent by land!

Park in Sao Paulo

Sao Paulo, Brasil

Sao Paulo, is the largest and one of the mos wonderful cities in South America, with endless things to do and see. The huge diversity of art, food, historic and recreational activities this city offers can be overwhelming (for example, there are over 15,000 bars) so find some cool spots to visit before your trip. This way, you are sure to use your time wisely.

So, any idea where to go? For food, the Jardins district is rife with little restaurants and art-house cinemas. While it’s not necessarily eye-pleasing, it is a sophisticated city with a melting pot of cultures. With influences from Japan, Italy, Lebanon, Germans and a growing number of Peruvians and Bolivians, to name just a few, the city has a unique fusion of culture. This post makes for a list of excellent restaurants where you can try just about anything.

Street art in Sao Paulo

There are plenty of cool attractions in Sao Paulo alongside the museums and cathedrals. For an unusual art exhibit, visit Beco do Batman, Batman Alley, an open air gallery of street art attracting artists from all over the world. Or you can take a look at the world’s second highest Lego tower, made of 500,000 pieces. And of course, there are plenty of shopping options, from high-end designer clothes to markets full of antiques and handicrafts.

To get to our next destination, the capital city of Argentina, you can take a bus from Sao Paulo to Buenos Aires. The trip is a long, but rewarding one, and you can buy your tickets online by visiting the Tickets Bolivia page.

 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Steak, tango, red wine and football. Buenos Aires, the ‘Paris of South America’, is known for many things. It has a reputation for being seductive, elegant and sophisticated. With theatres, opera houses, galleries, and French and Italian influenced architecture. Buenos Aires has a lot going for it and a lot to keep you entertained.

9 de Julio Av, Buenos Aires

This city is a strong contender for South America’s best party city. It’s not just the nightlife that’s over the topt in Buenos Aires, as you’ll realise while you walk around its busy streets. For a dose of architecture, history and literature all in one, check out El Ateneo Grand Splendid, one of the world’s biggest and most beautiful bookstores that’s lived previous lives as a theatre and cinema.

The food is another erason to spend a few days here. You can´t leave if you haven´t tried a parrila, where heaps of steak, sausage, ribs are put on a grill and washed down with the best local Malbec.

Tango Show in the streets of Buenos Aires

A great way to spend a day here is to explore the barrios, walking from one neighborhood to the next. They all have distinct personalities. For example, the lively La Boca is known for the rows of colourful houses, whereas San Telmo is famous for its eclectic markets. The elegant Recoleta has the lavish cemetery, while the trendy Palermo is great for people watching.

To get from Buenos Aires to our next destination, La Paz, you can buy bus tickets online. The buses are very comfortable and the journey takes around 30 hours.

La Paz, Bolivia

La Paz, the administrative capital of Bolivia, is the highest in the world. Located at 3,600 meters above sea level, in the Andes Mountains, you can take in gorgeous views of the city that literally clings to and sprawls down the canyon that’s incredible to explore.

La Paz cable car view

If it’s the views you’re after, head on the aerial cable car system, Mi Teleferico. In 2014 the city introduced Mi Teleférico, the world’s highest cable car network. This transformed the city, lifting people up out of the traffic and turning an hour drive into a thrilling ten minute journey through the sky. As well as saving many of residents from commuter hell, the views of the city and the insight into life of the locals are amazing. Be sure to dress warmly and be prepared to spend some time acclimating to the high elevations. It can be tough if you’re not used to higher-altitude cities. For a few tips on how to cope, check out this post.

When you´re done with floating over the city, try walking it. Wander through the large food market, inspect the bizarre and gruesome things on offer in the witches market, and enjoy the intriguing architect style, a combination of concrete blocks against dramatic Gothic spires. It’s dizzy, gritty and chaotic but also exhilarating and enthralling with an endearing rough-around-the-edges charm.

Streer fair in La Paz

Our next destination is cusco. You can buy bus tickets from la Paz to Cusco by cliking here, where you will also find the schedules and prices of the best companies offering this service.

 Cusco, Peru

Cusco is a city famous for being the gateway to the ancient Incan city of Machu Picchu. The city has many colonial cobbled streets, white buildings and ubiquitous orange rooftops, making it one of the most beautiful cities in South America. The spiritual vibration of the surrounding sacred valley is felt throughout the city, so yoga spots, meditation sessions and ethical vegan eateries are common. It’s also one of the best cities to visit in South America for anyone wanting to learn Spanish, with loads of local schools offering courses at cheap prices.

Plaza de Armas Square

Cusco was once the Inca capital, and it was built on the ruins of ancient temples and palaces. It´s rich history is fascinating. Plaza de Armas is the heart of the city and an ideal starting point of any walking tour. Cusco is home to a lively nightlife, for which it has been named ‘party capital of Peru’. All kinds of bars and clubs surround the square, playing electronic, hip-hop and dance music till the early hours with street vendors on hand for when you make the journey back to your hotel.

Our final destination in this tour of cities is Lima. To travel by bus from from Cuzco to Lima, and to see the schedules and prices of the best companies offerind this service, click here.

Inca walls near Cuzco

Lima, Peru

A lot of travellers pass through Lima on their way to Cusco and Machu Picchu or on their way back. Lima may get a day or two at a glance on most itineraries, but it’s not a city many stay in. Yet, Lima has a lot to offer travelers, especially foodies.

A view of Lima

Founded in 1535 by Francisco Pizarro, Peru’s capital city is one of the best cities in South America to visit. Located between the Andes Mountains and the Pacific Coast, you’ll find a huge amount of colonial Spanish buildings as well as ancient Incan archaeological sites close by. Some cool things to do in Lima include:

  • Visit El Circuito Mágico del Agua: The Magic Water Circuit is a night show of water and light in Parque de la Reserva: 13 water fountains that come to life with lasers, coloured lights, and music.
  • Eat ceviche: This popular seafood dish is made with raw fish cured in lemon. The fish is served with white corn, sweet potato, and red onions, typically for lunch. Some popular cevicherias in Lima include: La Mar, Punta Sal, Pescados Capitales and El Punto Azul.

Seafood Ceviche

  • Eat peruvian food in general: Peruvian food has become known around the world for its blend of indigenous, spanish and asian cultures, and for the way its street food and popular cousine has been made gourmet with a few fusion twists. Peru’s cuisine has evolved, blended, and been adapted by the various cultures found within the country. Some prime examples of this include chifa (Peruvian-Chinese fusion) and nikkei (Peruvian-Japanese fusion). You’ll also find that dishes vary by geographical region, resulting in coastal, Andean, and jungle food. For all these reasons, Lima is considered the gastronomic capital of Latin America. From the most gourmet restaurants to the cheapest street-food trucks, the food in Lima is well worth trying.
  • Tour the city: The bus tour company Mirabus runs various tours within Lima.. If you want to get an overview of Miraflores and Lima’s historic centre, then their tour Lima by Dayis a good option. The tour last 3.5 hours and it is 70 soles.
  • Shop at Larcomar. Larcomar is a shopping centre located in Miraflores, which stands out because it has been built on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, with amazing lookout points. People come here to shop, have dinner, or enjoy a snack with an amazing view.

We hope the information is useful and wish you happy traveling!

The most spiritual places to travel in South America

For many people, traveling is a form of spiritual practice. Traveling can refresh and renew your sense of wonder, and allow for a deeper connection to the earth, other cultures and your self. Now, traveling to specific places known for their spiritual power can be an even more spiritually rewarding experience.

Tourist destinations that are highly regarded spiritualy have been constructed based on specific belief systems, such as churches and temples, and some are known as such simply based on the energy and vibration of the landscape and nature. These last tend to be of spiritual importance to ancient and native cultures.


In this post, we will tell you about the most spiritual places to travel to in South America. We can even imagine a spiritual tour for you, starting in the low-lands of Bolivia and ending in the peruvian desert. Many of these destinations are known for their ancient legends, spiritual practices and long-standing ceremonies, while other sacred sites now exist as ruins or natural wonders.

Samaipata (Bolivia)
We start our imaginary spiritual tour in Samaipata. The ruins of Samaipata are located in the remote mountains of central Bolivia, 120 kilometers from the city of Santa Cruz, the largest city of the Bolivian low-lands. The ruins of this fort and ancient, pre-incan religious temple are one of the most enigmatic ancient sites in all of South America. Located on a mountain at 6500 feet above sea level (1949 meters), the site was first discovered by the early Spanish and named ‘The Fortress’ as they believed it was a strategic, military strong-hold of the Incas.

Ceremonial stone of Samaipata

Today, archaeologists believe it was not a military fortress, but a spiritual one. The ruins of Samaipata consist of two parts: the stone hill carved with fascinating images of jaguars, snakes, other zoomorphic and geometrical figures, a water tank with conduits, and a curious seating arrangement; and an area to the south of the stone hill that seems to have been the administrative and residential district. The seating arrangement at the top of the stone hill was designed with 12 seats carved into the hilltop facing toward each other in a circle.

You can travel to Samaipata by bus from any city in Bolivia. Just click here for a full article about how to reach Samaipata from Cochabamba, Sucre, La Paz and Santa Cruz. In order to get to La Paz, where our next destination lies, you can take a bus from Santa Cruz to La Paz. 

The Ancient City of Tiwanaku (Bolivia)
Our next stop are the ancient ruins of the pre-incan city of Tiwanaku, which was once the spiritual and political capital of the Tiwanaku Empire. Believed to have existed between 300 BC and 300 AD, this empire dominated the area in the current border between Bolivia and Peru. Today, it is a ceremonial site with majestic structures infused with an ancient spirituality that’s palpable. Hightlights are Tiwanaku’s beautifully crafted sculptures and its mysteriously crafted megalithic stone arch known as La Puerta del Sol (“The Gate of the Sun”). What’s more astounding than these few remnants themselves is the mindboggling story behind their construction. Consider the fact that the stones — weighing up to 150 tons — were somehow transported from more than 10 miles away.

Monolith sculpture in Tiwanaku

Today, the ruins are the center of a spiritual celebration of the Winter Solistice. Every june 20th, indigenous communities gather around the Gate of the Sun at night and hold bonfire vigils, waiting for the sun to return and receiving the first rays that go through the gate. This celebration has become a spiritual tourist attraction in the last ten years. You can travel from La Paz to Tiwanaku by train. To buy tickets and check out the schedule, click here.

Lake Titicaca & Sun Island: Birthplace of Inca Civilization (Bolivia/Peru)
Just a few kilometers from the ruins of Tiwanaku is the next place on our tour: Lake Titicaca. This lake was central to the birth of the Inca civilization, as legend has it both its founder-king,  and the sun itself were said to have emerged from these glistening blue waters. Thus, the lake’s Isla del Sol (“Island of the Sun”) became a vital religious center, attracting pilgrims from across the ancient empire to visit its shrines on this endless lake.

A view of Lake Titikaka

It is hard to believe that this remarkable expanse of shimmering water, the highest altitude navigable lake in the world, is indeed a lake and not a vast ocean, as it unfolds towards the horizon in a spectacular display of natural beauty. You can sail across the expansive lake to the Sun Island, discover this sacred site with moon and sun temples and spellbinding scenery. Soak up the mythical aura of this true South American icon as you walk along flagstone paths to temple ruins set against a backdrop of picture-perfect snow-capped mountains.

Boats and tours to the Island of the sun leave from Copacabana, a colonial town on the Bolivian shore of Lake Titicaca. To find out how to travel by bus from La Paz to Copacabana, just click here.

Machu Picchu
The next stop in our spiritual tour needs no presentation. This ancient ruin is located high in Peru’s Andes Mountains, a feat of engineering performed by the Inca Empire in the 15th century. The site is home to many temples, shrines, and caves, and is most renowned for their advanced civil engineering and way the buildings portray astronomical formations. Climbing to Machu Picchu has been a journey of deep spirituality for people ever since the site was re-discovered two hundred years ago. Many sites in the area used for healing and connecting to ancient energies.

Machu Picchu

The remote remains of this ancient Inca civilisation were hidden for around 400 years. As well as being a marvel of engineering, with stones so precisely shaped to fit together that they required no mortar, the complex contains multiple shrines, temples and carvings, some of which are clearly oriented to astronomical events.

In order to get to Machu Picchu, you must travel by train from Cusco. You can easily travel to Cusco from La Paz, and even get a direct bus to Cusco from Copacabana in comfortable buses.

Our final destination in this imaginary spiritual tour is one of the greatest mysteries on this planet: the Nazca Lines, monumental drawings etched across 500sq km of the Pampa Colorada of southern Peru, in impeccably geometric lines.

Nazca lines as seen from the sky

Since they can only be seen clearly from the sky, Peru’s sand-etched lines – some of which depict animals and others, geographical patterns – have led theorists to ask themselves  who they were originally intended for. Were they messages to the gods? Were they created by aliens? More recent research suggests that the lines were ritualistic in purpose, designed to be walked along, single file and deliberately, in a quest for spirituality and enlightenment. They could be anything from ceremonial sites for the gods of water, to an astronomical calendar.

No matter if you view from ground level or by plane, you’re certain to be awestruck. Contemplate the many theories for yourself as you marvel at the hundreds of geoglyphs from above. You can easily buy tickets to travel by bus from Cusco to Nazca by following this link.  Happy enlightenment!

The best Bolivian destinations for museum lovers

Museums are wonderful places that allow us to travel through time through physical objects, be they pieces of artwork or historical relics. In this time of staying behind closed doors, many of the best museums in the world have opened their collections to virtual visits, allowing their expositions to be enjoyed online.

This has been wonderful for museum lovers, but we cannot deny that being there is just different; breathing the air, seeing the light on the objects, listening while a specialized guide lets us in on all the secrets. Just like theater and dance need the presence of spectators to come alive, museums are complete only with the living presence of visitors.

Museo Nal de Arte
Colonial artwork at the National Museum of Art in La Paz

In this post, we tell you all about the best Bolivian destinations for you museum lovers, explaining how you can travel to each city from different points in the country and which are those museums you just cannot miss, so you can plan your trip for when lock-down is over.

La Paz

La Paz is the seat of government of Bolivia, a city of two million inhabitants, at an altitude of 3600 m above sea level. As one of the liveliest cities in the country, it has a large cultural and historical tradition, and a wide array of museums you just can´t miss. Here, we tell you about our favorites:

  • National Museum of Art: located in a majestic colonial house just a block away from the Palace of Government, the National Museum of Art takes you on a journey of Bolivian art from the times of the colony to today´s contemporary pieces, with work from the best artists like Gil Imaná and Gastón Hugalde, among others. The museum is under the administration of the Cultural Foundation of the Central Bank of Bolivia (FCBCB).
  • National Museum of Ethnography and Folklore: This museum is located only a few blocks away from the first, and is also under the administration of the FCBCB. Here, you will get to know the different artistic expressions of Bolivia´s indigenous peoples and its cultural and biological diversity, fromtextile art to feather clothes and ornaments. Make sure you don´t miss the impressive collection of ritual and festive masks. This is one of the most original museums you will see in Bolivia.

Museo Nacional Etno Y Folk
The mask collection at the Museo Nacional de Etnografía y Folklore

You can travel to La Paz from Peru easily, through Puno, and make La Paz your first stop in Bolivia. You can also travel to La Paz from Chile, with direct bus trips from Arica or Iquique with bus companies that offer comfortable buses and a very good service. If you are in any other city in Bolivia, you can take a bus to La Paz very easily and at different schedules. All buses from other departments arrive at the Bus Terminal of La Paz, located on Peru Av.


Potosi is a city of colonial architecture, with a very rich history and culture. It is key for understanding Bolivia´s history. It was declared Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO in 1987, due to it´s contribution to universal history and its architecture and art attractions. The city was founded on the foothills of the Cerro Rico de Potosi, literally a mountain of silver that provided funds for the Spanish Crown for centuries. At it´s summit, Potosi had more inhabitants than Paris. Today, the city has several museums that might interest you, but we bet this one will be your favorite:

  • Casa Nacional de la Moneda: It is said that, if you took all the silver mined from the Cerro Rico de Potosi during the spanish colony, you could build a bridge from America to Spain. Well, it was here, at the Casa Nacional de la Moneda, where silver coins were minted for the Spanish Colony. Visiting this museum will help you understand the relevance of Potosi in universal history, the way the coins were made, and the importance of our indigenous peoples and cultures.

Icon of the Casa Nacional de la Moneda. Image by jo vanel from Pixabay

Potosi is a very easy city to travel to, with completely paved highways if you´re coming from La Paz, Villazón or Sucre. If you´re coming from La Paz, you can buy your bus tickets online here. The buses depart from the Bus Terminal of La Paz at 21:30 and arrive in Potosi early in the morning. If you come from Sucre, you can buy your tickets here online. The trip from Sucre to Potosi takes only 3 hours in normal buses.


Sucre is a colonial city in the Bolivian valleys, the constitutional capital of the city, despite the seat of government being in La Paz. Known for its streets of white walls and houses with red tile rooftops, its churches and castles and… its beautiful museums. Birthplace of intelectuals, historians, political leaders and writers, it was on the streets of Sucre that the first cry for liberty came about in Latin America, in the 19th century.

Museo Casa de la Libertad Sucre
Interior – Casa de la Libertad

  • House of Liberty:  If you are interested in Latin American history, this is the museum for you. The house of liberty is the place where the Act of Independence of Alto peru was signed in 1825, establishing liberty from the Spanish Colony. Among its treasures is the original Act Of Independence of alto Peru, declared in 2019 as Memory of the World by the Committee  Comité Memory of World-Bolivia (MOW-Bolivia-UNESCO). It also has ancient portraits of the liberators Simón Bolívar, Antonio José de Sucre and José Ballivián, the tomb of captain Juana Azurduy, the first independent flag of South america and other relics.
  • Museum of Indigenous Art ASUR: Unique in it´s style, this museum is a must for those who appreciate and want to know more about the arts of indigenous peoples of Bolivia, specially centered around their textiles. It is said that the indigenous peoples of Tarabuco and the jalq’a, in the department of Chuquisaca, tell their stories and express their cultural identity in their intricate weavings. In this museum, you will see exquisitely woven pieces and you will aproach an understanding of the artistic and philosophic depth of these cultures. You also get to see and meet weavers as they work on their textiles!

Museo asur
Jalka textile

Traveling to Sucre is easy from any main city in Bolivia, such as Santa Cruz or Cochabamba. All you have to do is buy your tickets online and show up at the bus station at least 30 minutes before the trip. Trips from Potosi to Sucre by bus are very frecuent, since the two cities are not far away and the highway that connects them is in very good shape.

We wish you a happy return to museums very soon!