From Sucre to Potosi

Celebrations in Sucre, Bolivia

Celebrations in Sucre, Bolivia

Sucre is a beautiful town with many buildings painted white, and a place very proud of being the capital. Bolivian flags are hung everywhere. The day we arrived there were celebrations in the main square. It is the 200th anniversary of Bolivia this year. We stayed in a beautiful mansion converted into a hotel in a great location. It was comfortable and easy to wander throughout the town. In the afternoon of our second day, Leanne and I went to see Cal Orck’o, the World’s largest paleontological site with 5055 dinosaur tracks of at least 8 species. It was fascinating to learn about how it was discovered. Sucre is probably one of the nicest cities in Bolivia and our next stop was Potosi, which we reached on a stinky local bus. Potosi by contrast is one of the least appealing cities in the country. It is famous for being the city (there are towns higher) with the highest elevation in the world at about 4100 meters. It is also known for its silver mines and the appalling conditions the miners work in. The average miner will not survive long past their 40th birthday. It is a courtesy to buy dynamite, 90+ proof alcohol and coca leaves for the miners to chew on when visiting inside the mines. With a very drunk and possibly high tour guide we opted not to go beyond the mine entrance. The city is also known for being unsafe with numerous travellers having bad stories from their visit. We are looking forward to leaving in the morning for Uyuni.

We will be out of communication when we are crossing the famous Bolivian salt flats, but should be back in contact once we cross into Chile.

Some photos from Bolivia are posted here: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=98725&id=673382190&l=5ae4c02cd9

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