I will not write about flights, as we flew from the states.
We arrived in La Paz, a city that is located at 3500 m and it is already felt at the airport! Gornyashka (mountain sickness) came to us both, despite the experience of a trip to the Himalayas a year ago. But I will not talk about it, as it is very individual. We did not have time to make visas, so we had to issue them at the airport, which we very much regretted, since the price is 3 times more.
Visas cost us 100 USD each, for this everyone needs a copy of their passport, hotel reservation and return ticket. At the airport, there is a stall where you will be printed out or copied for a penny, if you do not have it with you or a copy for the family.
There is also an exchange office with a standard exchange rate in which you can change the currency, it is better to change more at once, since they take a commission (30 bolivianos, which is equal to 4 dollars at the exchange rate)
Exchange rate for the duration of the trip: 1 usd = 6.9 boliviano (bol.)
Budget of Peru for two people 5 days (without flights):
The rate of 1 usd = 3.3 sols
- Accommodation: 133 usd (25+28+80)
- Train: Cuzco-Machu Picchu-Cuzco 340 usd
- Ticket to Machu Picchu with Mt. MP: 122 usd
- Taxi and minibus – 10 usd
- Food: 100 USD (two times we ate in elite restaurants), two times we were fed on the train, and another lunch we had was included in the ter on the rainbow mountains.
- Bus (Agvas Calientes-MP-back) 48 usd
- Rainbow Mountains Tour – 21 usd
- Souvenirs: $30
The result: 804 usd
We arrived at night, so we took a taxi to the hostel – 90b. We highly recommend the hostel ” Bunkie Hostel»
Avenida Montes Nª641, La Paz Centro, La Paz, Bolivia
Booked via booking, very well located, 5 min to the bus station, 10 min to the cable car station, market, and works around the clock, suitcases can be left after check-out. We overslept breakfast, so I won’t comment. We arrived at night, we were placed, water was sold, wi-fi was given! The room was taken for two with its own shower – 140 boliviano.
Waking up with an incredible headache, we left our suitcases and went for a walk in La Paz, first the pharmacy and medicines from gornyashka (those that we brought with us did not help), unfortunately, and local medicines did not help me much either. Then a set lunch, where only local people ate – the price is 28 bol. for two. It included a salad that you type yourself, noodle soup, a meat or chicken ball with rice and potatoes, and a dessert-jelly (only compote was missing).
The place resembled our canteens, only 20 years ago. The Bolivians around us ate very intelligently, were dressed in shirts, women with manicures and heels, in general, the impression was very good). The food was edible, well, we didn’t search on tripadviser for where and what to eat.
As a rule, my gut always tells me which local restaurant to go to, and this almost unmistakably works in all countries (only in Costa Rica it did not work – there is just generally not very tasty). After lunch, we took a ride on the cable car, locally called Teleferico. We drove on 3 lines: morada, blanca, roja), we bought a ticket at the ticket office for all 3 at once. The price was 3 bol. one line per person.
Also in this place you will see: Awanapampa (a beautiful mountain range), Cerillos (where we saw mush ostriches), Pueblo fantasma (a city where slaves were settled, which the Spaniards forced to work in the mines). Perhaps everything else includes any other programs of tour agencies that send tourists from Uyuni.
And now the main question that I was looking for an answer to when I made a decision on tours: is it worth driving another 6 hours to get to Tupiza and take a tour from this city? Although the program was definitely wider and we were able to see much more of Bolivia, but we got to it right after the flight, right after the bus and then without a break-in the jeep, which on the first day had the most crossings…
It was very difficult for us and probably if I did it again, no, we would have chosen a shorter option! But if you have already left the flight or are in Bolivia for more than a day-then feel free to choose a longer tour from Tupiza!
The tour is very interesting, most of all we were impressed: the city of Encanto, the Dali desert, the Colorada Lagoon, the Negra Lagoon, the Cactus Island and the Salt Marsh itself. We would definitely exclude Laguna Blanca and Laguna Verde – as it is not interesting and far from the main route.
There were also: Italy Perdida and the Anaconda River. The internet was only available in one place during the entire tour, in the village of Ulaka, where you are taken to taste the local beer. The price of the Internet is 15 bol.
Cuzco is a city that you can’t help but fall in love with!
At the airport, we exchanged money at a good rate (1 USD – 3.3 sols), there the girls at the ticket office were asked what bus we can get to our hostel, and, fighting off the taxi drivers, left the airport. It was a 2-minute walk to the public transport stop. After 5 minutes, we were already immersed in the minibus, and it was still an experience!
Everyone looked at us with surprise, there were no seats, so we stood, our micro suitcase was at the driver’s side. On the move, people jumped in and out, the female conductor shouted stops at the top of her voice and immediately pushed people into the salon, while taking a fee from each of them at the exit, remembering who entered and where! It was fun and hot, after 15-20 minutes, the passengers told us to get out, we drove up to our stop. The fare for two people was 1.3 sols.
We checked into the hostel “Casa Mayu”, which we will not recommend, but we will describe. From the good-the location (10 min walk to the central square, as well as to the train station) and the price (25 usd / day with breakfast). On the downside, the bathroom had mold all over the ceiling, the room was cold, and the breakfast was meager. After checking in, we went to look for a place to eat, and then my gut was right again, it was one of the most delicious places where we ate in Peru! Too bad it was Christmas day and we couldn’t get there again! Restaurant “Mr. Ceviche” – I recommend it to everyone who will be in Cuzco! It’s expensive, but it’s worth it. For lunch, we gave 73 sols. But it was very tasty, especially the fried alpaca.
After this mini-feast, we went for a walk around Cuzco, looking at churches, shops and souvenir shops. We were on Christmas Day, which gave a certain charm to the city.
I hope every reader will find something useful for exploring these beautiful countries of South America!