Denouement Dashboard - Bolivia 🇧🇴

Denouement Dashboard - Bolivia 🇧🇴

This is the place I will cover the stats of each country as we go.

As usual, follow along at:

Anyway, let's get into it:

Bolivia: 7-18/4/23


Rough rules: I will count the flight (or bus) TO that country as tracks IN that country.


  • Foz du Iguacu --> Sao Paolo --> Sant Cruz de la Sierra = 846 + 1850 = 2696km
  • Santa Cruz de la Sierra --> La Paz (El Alto) = 553km
  • La Paz (El Alto) --> Uyuni = 459km


  • About 50km around Santa Cruz
  • La Paz --> Tiwanaku --> La Paz = 132km
  • Probably another 30km around La Paz
  • About 850km in a Landcruiser throught the Bolivian high desert


  • 63.3km

Total = 4,833.3km


Rough rules: I will count the flight (or bus) TO that country as an expense IN that country.

Total expense: $4,107.10 AUD

Total Days: 12 Days inclusive

Expense per day = $342 AUD/Day

Expenses Breakdown (mathematical, not emotional):

The 'Activities' line here is greater than the 'Accomodation' because I arbitrarily decided that a three day tour out in the desert (that included accomodation) would be classified as 'Activities'. It's not a democracy.

Reasonable restaurants bill as well I suppose - couple of good places in Santa Cruz, some good Japanese in La Paz, and awesome Pizza in Uyuni.

(And as I write this we are in Peru on a pseudo-organised tour that includes accomodation that I have classified as 'Sightseeing' because it is a bit less robust than bouncing around the desert in the back of a Landcruiser. The lack of clarity is making me anxious but I suppose I am still accounting for the dollars...)

Travel Bingo:

Pretty good Bingo Card from Bolivia, actually. Really punching above it's weight.

An explanation of Travel Bingo is here.

Relevant Media:

There is (allegedly) ongoing history of human sacrifice in Bolivia so that bodies can be buried in the foundations of the buildings won't fall down.

And then there is a Daniel Radcliffe movie based on real events in Bolivia as well - need to get around to watching it.

Culinary Corner by a Non-Foodie:

  • To be honest, Bolivian food is rubbish. Sorry, guys.
  • You can expect a quinoa (their prized grain) vegetable soup then some fairly thin meat with boiled vegetables and some rice.
  • We did have some really good food in Bolivia, it's just that it was of Japanese or Italian heritage...
  • Again, sorry.
  • Llama sausage is not too bad though.

Tips and Tricks:

  • If you are pressed for time, don't go to Santa Cruz de la Sierra - it was fine, it's just not quite what you are after if you are going to Bolivia - it's not Bolivian Amazon, it's not Bolivian Andes, and not Bolivian salt flats/desert.
  • In La Paz, stay in Sopocachi - fairly upmarket and safe area.
  • Do not stay in El Alto - I would be suprised if any booking aggregator ever gave you that option, but don't - it is well known as an unsafe place.
  • You can't drink the water - get some bottles.
  • If Solo traveller in La Paz - stay at the Selina Hotel - lots of backpackers around.
  • In La Paz - there are heaps of people asking for money and trying to sell you rubbish - watch your bags.


  • In La Paz - do a walking tour, it's an interesting city full of superstitions, withcraft and history.
  • In La Paz - Use the cable cars; the traffic situation is cooked and it's too steep to walk everywhere.
  • In La Paz - absolutely go and see some Cholitas Wrestling. Google it and thank me later.
  • In Uyuni - Stay at the Tonito hotel; it is fabulous. And eat at the attached 'Minuteman Pizza' - Chris is amazing.
  • Take a tour for a few days out over the Salar de Uyuni salt flats and up into the high desert - it's amazing.


  • Bolivia is a superstitious place with great deference to the Mother Earth - down to burning sugar statues and llama foetuses as sacrifices so that you may get a favourable loan from a bank.
  • Socialism is obviously holding the place back - the fools nationalised the gas industry then forgot to prospect for subsequent sites after the original mines went dry - what a surprise.
  • The altitude is significant - expect at least a couple of days to start to acclimatise. Anyone with respiratory or cardiac issues needs a plan for their travel - 3,500m is no joke.
  • As I am starting to look through the lens of "would I live here" - Bolivia would not make that list.
  • So set aside a week or so - see some llamas, hit the salt flats, and try on a poncho.

Thanks for reading along.

The next country update will come... after the next country.

Weekly updates will come...weekly.