20.02.2011 5 °C
Cochabamba, the capital of food, or so we were told. A tedious trip involving a 3 hour micro bus and an 11 hour big bus from Santa Cruz was all we needed. The city on first impressions is a bit of a dump. As it was late we simply crashed out.
Next morning we ventured to the bus station, dodging Protests and armed police, the bus staion was unable to process a bus ticket more than 24 hours in advance so a wasted affort. We decided to walk to the newer part of the city and eventually to the Christo which is sited on a nearby hill top.
The cable car ride was impressive and so is the rather shabbily constructed Chiristo.
From the hilltop we were treated to some excellent views of this sprawling city.
The following day with more protests in full swing we attempted to get an extension to our visa which was expiring in a few days time, knowing the bureaucratic nature of Bolivia we expected a long and tedious few hours. 10 minutes later we emerged from the Immigration office with a further 60 days added to our visa. Next up the bus station where we eventually managed to book a morning bus to La Paz. On a roll we visited a nearby internet cafe and lo and behold it was actually really quite good, so we spent a couple of hours catching up on our photo downloads and blogs.
As for being the food capital... well so so, that was till we booked a table at a rather nice Italian restaurant. Ok so it was half decent but not as good as many. 5/10 for food, 2/10 for everthing else.
A 7 and a half hour bus from Cochabamba gets you to the cold and scruffy capital of La Paz. At 3700mts it´s the worlds highest capital city, the volume of traffic and associated pollution does little to help with breathing. Part of our reason in coming here is to catch up with some friends and to catch the bus to Copacabana. Just like Cochabamba, the place is full of demonstrations and more than once during the miners demo was dynamite detonated on the streets. A bit scary. La Paz really hasn´t much to offer, apart from the usual churches and plaza. The weather here was also dire, cold wet and not a lot to do. To our rescue came Harp and Aman who cooked up a superb curry in their apartment for us, also Liz and Kim arrived so we had a lot more fun despite the dire weather and overall dullness that is La Paz.
A great night out at the Star of India restaurant with Kim & liz, not the hottest of cuirries but very tasty none the less. Our last night in La Paz was with Harp, Aman, Liz & Kim at a Morrocan Restaurant.. :-)
Off to Copacabana.