The most indigenous country in South America
Bolivia: now officially known as the Plurinational State of Bolivia, is a landlocked country in central South America.
Capital: Sucre (official), La Paz (administrative)
Largest city: Santa Cruz
Area: 1.1 million sq km (424,164 sq miles), 98.7% land and 1.3% water
President (2013): Evo Morales
Population: 10,088,108 (2011) World Bank
Government: Presidential system, unitary state, Republic
34 Official languages including: Spanish Language, Quechua, Aymara language, Leco language, Puquina Language, Mòoré Language, Chiquitano language, Baure Language, Sirionó language, Kallawaya, Movima language, Canichana language, Itonama Language, Cayubaba language, Uru language, Araona Language, Ayoreo language, Tacana language, Pacahuara language, Chácobo language, Reyesano language, Tapieté Language, Cavineña Language, Wichí Lhamtés Nocten
Major religion: Christianity
Ethnic groups (2010): 55% Amerindian; 30% Mestizo; 15% White
Life expectancy: 65 years (men), 69 years (women) (UN)
Currency: 1 boliviano = 100 centavos
Main exports: Soyabeans, natural gas, zinc, gold, silver, lead, tin, antimony, wood, sugar
GNI per capita: US$1,810 (World Bank, 2010)
The people of Bolivia were civilized for hundreds of years before the Spaniards conquered the area. The city of Tiahuanaco was founded in what is now Bolivia about 400 BC. At its peak it had a population of about 40-50,000 and its people created great works of architecture. They also worked in pottery, silver, copper and obsidian.
Around AD 400, Tiahuanaco went from being a locally dominant force to a predatory state.Tiahuanaco expanded its reaches into the Yungas and brought its culture and way of life to many other cultures in Peru, Bolivia, and Chile. However, Tiahuanaco was not a violent culture in many respects. In order to expand its reach, Tiahuanaco exercised great political astuteness, creating colonies, fostering trade agreements (which made the other cultures rather dependent), and instituting state cults.[
From about 700 AD onwards Tiahuanaco ruled a great empire in Bolivia and southern Peru.
Around 1000 AD archaeologist believe that a dramatic shift in climate caused a major drought.
When even the very advanced raised field method of agriculture couldn’t provide the Tiahuanaco empire with enough food anymore, it fell apart and was replaced by small states.
In the 15th century the Incas conquered Bolivia and adapted parts of the culture and skills that were left from the Tiahuanaco culture.
However in 1533 the Incas were in turn conquered by the Spanish.
In 1545 silver was discovered at Potosi and the Spanish used forced labor to mine the Silver. Many of the Indians who were forced to work in mines died there. Many more died of European diseases.
On August 6, 1825 Bolivia became independent from Spain and Gran Peru. The new nation was named Bolivia in honor of the Simon Bolivar the hero of the independence movement.
However the new republic of Bolivia faced an economic depression and many silver mines were abandoned. Bolivia became a backward and impoverished state.
Until present day independent Bolivia lost 3 wars and each time a big piece of important land. The first war was against Chile, when Bolivia lost its access to the coast, the second against Brazil and the last against Paraguay.
Until 2013 the country has been ruled by no less than 195 different governments, which makes it understandable that it wasn’t easy to create stability.
In 2005 left-wing Evo Morales was elected president. Many things can be said about how he leads the country, but after he was re-elected in 2009 he now (2013) still remains president in a country that hasn’t known stability for a long time.
After his re-election Morales changed the country’s name from the “Republic of Bolivia” to the “Plurinational State of Bolivia” in recognition of the multi-ethnic nature of the country and the enhanced position of Bolivia’s indigenous peoples under the new constitution.
Today Bolivia remains a poor country, rich in mineral resources, including one of the biggest lithium reserves in the world, but (yet) unable to properly use them.
Another yet to be properly explored resource could be tourism. Beautiful sceneries, colorful cultures and an abounded wildlife could turn Bolivia into a great tourist destination…
Tips from Solo Female Travelers
Tips and experiences from solo female travelers who traveled independenty in South America In an age where people stay single longer, it is only logical that there will be more solo travelers, however what surprised me over the years is that I met more solo female travelers than solo male travelers. Research even shows that more than two thirds of the solo travelers are women, which is in contradiction with commonly expected behavior. In general solo male travelers are admired for their bravery and adventurous personality, while solo female travelers are often met with false judgment, concerned tones, and raised eyebrows. Popular questions include: “Are you married? Why not? When are you going to settle down, have a family, stop
Experiences from Solo Female Travelers
Check out these interesting short stories and tips from more than 34 solo female travelers who travelled alone through South America. The women who wrote their stories below are from various nationalities and were between 19 and 45 years old when they travelled through Latin America. 1- K. a Canadian traveler who’s deaf Travelling solo was an opportunity for me to see and do the things I wanted at my own pace, without having to compromise. Even though I left home solo, I often met other travellers who were going to the same cities and wanted to do the same things so we would become short-term travel buddies. Because of this, I rarely felt lonely. When a fellow traveller and
Travel agencies vs online booking
Using travel agencies versus online booking websites In an age where you can buy almost everything online, many thought that travel agencies would soon disappear. Although many travel agencies had to close their doors, studies show that there’s a comeback. The arrival of online booking websites made it much easier for independent travellers to book their own holiday online. But do they also make it easier to travel? In this article we compare the use of travel agencies vs booking online with popular travel booking websites. The advertisement of booking websites like Booking.com and Expedia make you believe that you don’t need any travel agency anymore to plan your holiday and if you use their website it will be very
Different Inca Trails
What is “The Inca Trail” and why is it so popular to hike this trail? At the peak of their existence (1430 AD – 1530 AD), the Quechua civilization were called Inkas, in honor of their Royalty. According to their belief they were the sons of the sun and the Inka was their king. Under the rule of the famous Inka Pachacuti or Pachacútec, the Inka/ Inca Civilization quickly started to expand and conquer other civilizations. They called their new empire “Tawantinsuyu”, after the four different points of the compass. The Tawantinsuyu Empire covered a huge part west of the Andean Mountain Range, roughly in what are now called Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Chile. To facilitate transport, control and administration
The prettiest travel route from Ecuador to Peru!
Vilcabamba, Ecuador to Chachapoyas, Peru The most scenic way to travel from Ecuador to Peru is without doubt the eastern route from Vilcabamba to Chachapoyas, which passes through the Podocarpus National Park and crosses the border at La Balsa. Until March 2003 it was still only possible to cross this border by boat over the Canchis River. The small local boats were also called “Balsas”, hence the name La Balsa. On March 8, 2003 both, the presidents from Ecuador and Peru where present when a new international bridge between the two countries was opened. Now, 15 years later, the first direct bus crosses this bridge from Ecuador into Peru and back. Although this direct bus takes away a bit of
Ecuador Visa update
Ecuador visa update 22-8-2018 On January 5 in 2017 the Ecuadorian government approved a new immigration law called: “La Nueva Ley de Movilidad Humana”. Part of this law serves to help Ecuadorian migrants who want to come back to Ecuador, but there are also new tourist visa regualtionsis with news for tourists who want to come to Ecuador. The problem with the new law was that many new regulations seemed good ideas, but turned out to be unpractical, or just very difficult to enforce… Official PDF copy of the new law: https://www.aduana.gob.ec/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Ley-Organica-de-Movilidad-Humana.pdf On August 21, 2018, most inconclusive details from the new immigration law have finally been sorted out and on the following website you can find more information about
Potosí, the most important American City!
The introduction of Potosí Historical seen the Bolivian city of Potosí and its Cerro Rico Silver Mines are without doubt the most important influences in South America history. But the mines and city of Potosí are now almost like a forgotten movie star, famous in its own time, but forgotten by new generations… Hopefully this article can help Potosí and its mines to gain back some of their fame. History of Potosí and its silver mines In pre-Hispanic times the current province of Potosí was mainly inhabited by ethnic groups called Charcas, Chullpas and Aymara. These cultures lived from agriculture and selling ceramic pottery and jewelry made from silver. When the ethnic group of Quechuas, better known as Inca’s, invaded
The pretty Oasis of Huacachina is located in the desert, about 4 km outside the town of Ica. It is only a small village with maybe about 100 inhabitants living around a natural lake and surrounded by high sand dunes. The history of Huacachina The origin of the name Huacachina seems to come from the words “waqay china”, which means “crying woman” in the local language Quechua. There are different local legends about the emergence of the lake. But in general storyline talks about a beautiful princes, with a beautiful voice who fell in love with a brave warrior. The warrior died in a battle and the sad princes looked for a quite spot to cry. She kept crying until
Tourist Visa Peru 2018
New regulations for tourists who visit Peru Since the beginning of 2018 the Peruvian Government has changed the immigration rules for tourists who want to stay longer in Peru. All regular foreign tourists who enter Peru have the right to receive a tourist visa, which allows them to stay a maximum of 183 days within a period of 365 days in Peru. However, if tourists were also receiving these 183 days was/ is depending on the person in the immigration office who puts the stamp in your passport. ‘Tourists’ from Ecuador for example often just receive just 2 till 5 days. They use those days to go shopping in Piura (cheaper) and travel then back to their homes in Ecuador.
Ecuadorian Tourist Visa Extension
Important visa travel information for tourists who want to stay longer in Ecuador: Since December 2017 the Ecuadorian government has adapted a new extension of the immigration law (acuerdo N° 907). According to this new agreement each regular foreign tourist who arrives in Ecuador has the right to stay 90 days for free as a tourist in Ecuador. Tourists who want to stay longer in Ecuador can apply once for an extra of 90 days extension on their tourist visa. This visa extension cost at the moment of writing exact 129.63 US$. South American tourists with the following nationalities: Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Guyana, Paraguay, Perú, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela (all countries that belong to UNASUR), do not have