THE HIGHLIGHTS OF BOLIVIA

Day1 - LA PAZ
Transfer from the airport to the hotel in La Paz.
Day2 - LA PAZ I LAKE TITICACA I MOON ISLAND I SUN ISLAND
Overland journey from La Paz to Copacabana, a pretty town on the shores of Lake Titicaca, the world’s highest lake and the birthplace of civilization in Inca belief. On arrival, visit the shrine and the Dark Indian Virgin, an Inca sculpture carved in 1576 and the most important pilgrimage site in Bolivia. Next, take the Lake Titicaca hydrofoil cruise to Moon Island and visit the Temple of the Virgins of the Sun, or “Iñak Uyu,” an Inca nunnery made from stone, adobe and mortar. Continue on to Sun Island, to visit the Pilcocaina Sun Temple. Enjoy a llama trek to the hotel and lunch upon arrival. The afternoon is at leisure to explore the surroundings. Dinner at your hotel. (B,L,D)
Day3 - SUN ISLAND I COCOTONI I HUATAJATA
The morning is at leisure. Around noon visit the Inca “Grand Stairs” and the Sacred Fountain; taste the water believed to give eternal youth and happiness. Lunch at the Uma Kollu archaeological Restaurant; Visit the small handicraft market. Afterwards proceed by hydrofoil to Cocotoni, followed by overland journey to Huatajata. On arrival, visit the Andean Roots Eco Village, a complex containing replica mud houses made by the Chipaya people, who still live here, the Altiplano Museum, handicrafts village and the tall mortuary towers of the Urus Chipayas, whose culture dates to the last glacial period. Meet the Limachi family, who built the reed boats used by Thor Heyerdahl for his epic voyages across the Atlantic Ocean. You can also admire our elegant vicuñas, llamas, alpacas and the mythical Suri. At nightfall, experience “The Mystic World of the Kallawayas,” the natural healers of Bolivia. Tata Benjo, our Kallawaya medicine man, will bless visitors and answer questions by casting his sacred coca leaves. In blackest night, visit the Native Observatory Alajpacha and learn about Aymara cosmology while gazing at the southern constellations. (B,L)
Day 4 - HUATAJATA I LA PAZ
The morning is at leisure. Around noon visit the Inca “Grand Stairs” and the Sacred Fountain; taste the water believed to give eternal youth and happiness. Lunch at the Uma Kollu archaeological Restaurant; Visit the small handicraft market. Afterwards proceed by hydrofoil to Cocotoni, followed by overland journey to Huatajata. On arrival, visit the Andean Roots Eco Village, a complex containing replica mud houses made by the Chipaya people, who still live here, the Altiplano Museum, handicrafts village and the tall mortuary towers of the Urus Chipayas, whose culture dates to the last glacial period. Meet the Limachi family, who built the reed boats used by Thor Heyerdahl for his epic voyages across the Atlantic Ocean. You can also admire our elegant vicuñas, llamas, alpacas and the mythical Suri. At nightfall, experience “The Mystic World of the Kallawayas,” the natural healers of Bolivia. Tata Benjo, our Kallawaya medicine man, will bless visitors and answer questions by casting his sacred coca leaves. In blackest night, visit the Native Observatory Alajpacha and learn about Aymara cosmology while gazing at the southern constellations. (B,L)
Day5 - LA PAZ I UYUNI I SALT LAKE I INCAHUASI
Transfer to the airport for the flight to Uyuni. Upon arrival depart for a full day tour to the Uyuni Salt Flats and Isla Pescado. Uyuni is the largest salt lake on Earth, covering nearly 5,000 square miles on the Bolivian Andean High plateau. This is a weird, bone-dry landscape of spiky cacti, flat horizons and allencompassing silence. Dotted with lakes tinted by minerals and algae, patrolled by colorful flamingos, this is surely the most unearthly place on earth. At Isla Pescado, also called “Inca Wasi,” we find an oasis with formations of algae and fossils, covered by thousands of giant columnar cacti that can live more than a hundred years and grow to more than 36 feet tall. Needless to say, this other-worldly landscape is heaven for photographers. (B,L)
Day 6 - UYUNI I POTOSI
Early departure to Potosi, the fabled Colonial City that is the world’s highest at above 12000 feet. Home to the richest silver mine in the world in colonial times, the towering Cerro Rico Mountain produced enough silver to build a solid silver bridge from Potosi to Madrid. Visit La Casa de la Moneda (Royal Mint), with the wooden machinery used to make the silver coins for Spain during the colonial era. Our next stop is the Santa Teresa Museum, a Carmelite convent filled with impressive and sometimes macabre religious art. Potosi has been declared a “Historical and Cultural Legacy of Mankind” by UNESCO. (B,L)
Day7 - POTOSI I SUCRE
After breakfast we visit a silver mine, one of the main attractions in Potosi, and depart by car to Sucre, where we will enjoy a tour of this pretty town with its ornate churches, cobblestone streets and broad plazas. We will visit the Textile Museum Asur, the peaceful La Recoleta church with its privileged view of the city and the 18th century San Felipe Convent, whose rooftop and bell tower yield even more spectacular views. (B)
Day 8 - DAY TOUR TO TARABUCO
Enjoy the indigenous market of Tarabuco, one of the purest and most colorful in the world. Indigenous people dressed in traditional garb come to town every Sunday to buy, sell and barter their local products and handicrafts. (B)
Day9 - SUCRE I SANTA CRUZ
This morning transfer for your flight to Santa Cruz. Upon arrival depart to your panoramic tour of Santa Cruz. City Tour begins at the Main Square “Plaza 24 de Septiembre”, close view of the Cathedral “Basílica Menor de San Lorenzo”, visit Arte Campo (Crafts Shop in a very traditional house), continue to the “El Abasto” Indian Market, continue sightseeing of the main monuments and residential neighborhoods in the city. At the end of the tour, transfer to your hotel. (B)
Day 10 - FULL DAY TOUR TO JESUIT MISSIONS
Pick up at your hotel early in the morning at 06:00 and transfer to San Javier, built in 1691 and the oldest of the Jesuit missions that are now a World Heritage Site, valued for their unique synthesis of Jesuit and Chiquitano culture. San Javier’s baroque church was restored in 1987, and features elaborate ornamental carving, wooden columns and drawings. Continuing to Concepción we will visit the Church, a real treasure of the 19th century, restored in 1982. Beautifully constructed, it has an overhanging roof and 121 carved tree trunk columns, with altars and paintings made by the inhabitants. Later, visit the Museum and the crafts workshops. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant. (B,L)
Day11 - SANTA CRUZ TO USA (OR EXTEND YOUR STAY)
Transfer from your hotel to the airport to board your flight to your next destination. (B)