Flights which are scheduled from London Heathrow are most probably going to add a stopover at Madrid Airport which is the most popular stopover on your flights to Bolivia
Officially, Bolivia has fifteen airports open for international flights. Out of these only two are the busiest airports often buzzing with tourists.
Viru Viru International Airport (VVI) is the busiest international airport in Bolivia. It serves the city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, the largest city in Bolivia. The airport has a runway that stretches for 3.5 kilometres and handled 2,384,746 passengers in 2017. The airport is situated 15 kilometres from the city centre.
El Alto International Airport (LPB) is the airport that serves the city of El Alto and is the highest (altitude) airport in Bolivia and the fifth highest airport in the entire world. The airport is also 13 kilometres away from the city of La Paz. The airport has a 4-kilometre long asphalt runway and a 2-kilometre long grass runway for smaller planes. In 2017, the airport served 2 million passengers.
September to early November are the best times to book a ticket for Bolivia. The festivities in Bolivia begin in February, so book a flight well in advance of the holidays and the Carnival. However, if you want to leave for Bolivia in August then book a ticket in June, when the winter hits Bolivia.
The best time to visit Bolivia is from March to May. Tourists do visit Bolivia from March to August but by June the winter approaches and temperatures can drop to -20°C. If you are up for cosying up in the night then Bolivia is good until August. The rainforest also becomes less humid during the winter, so you can really have a refreshing experience.
Bolivia is proud of its native South American heritage. The culture of the country was heavily influenced by the colonial Spanish culture. The landmarks of Bolivia are also a combination of the two.
- The archaeological site at Tiwanaku is as impressive as Machu Picchu, but a bit limited in size. These are the remains of an older empire that stretched from northern Bolivia to the coast of Chile. The 'Gate of the Sun' megalith that stands in Titicaca was believed to be constructed by the same people.
- The Christ of Concordia in Cochabamba, Bolivia is a statue which mimics the Christ the Redeemer statue that shadows over the city Rio de Janeiro. The statue was constructed in 1987 and at the time was the tallest statue of Christ in the entire world. It's worth a watch! The views of the city are spectacular from there.
- The Mi Teleferico cable cart service has become more of a landmark than a transportation medium. The city of La Paz is connected with cables suspended at the highest points in the city. If you want to have a crash course of the city, take one trip around the lines. It only takes about 80 Bolivianos for a family to visit.
British passport holders are not required to apply for a visa to visit Bolivia. The initial limit of 30 days of the visa-free entry can be extended by a further 60 days after requesting the immigration department of Bolivia. Please have your passport stamped on arrival, so your departure is smooth.
The age-old traditions of the 'people of the Andes' are mixed with Catholicism of Europe in Bolivia. The best thing is that the local Bolivian considers the Virgin Mary as sacred as the many deities of the Andes.
- Celebrating Alasitas in La Paz is an experience like no other. The idea is to bring good fortune and luck right at the beginning of the year, specifically in La Paz on the 24th of January. A loved one would buy a miniature doll from the Witches Market in La Paz, adorn it with the fake US dollars, Euros and Bolivanos and gift it to the person he wishes luck should come to. This festival is a celebration of the local god of fortune, Ekeko.
- The Santa Semeta festival in Copacanaba city near the Lake Titicaca is amazing. The locals come to the pilgrimage on foot from La Paz. This festival is to offer the gods flowers in return for their good pleasure. You can see many carts and lorries decorated with ribbons on Good Friday moving to Copacabana around the time of this festival.
- The New year celebration of the Aymara begins at dawn on the 21st of June. In a large bonfire the local shamans utter spells to thank the gods Pachamama and Pachakama and burn offerings in their name. Minature houses made from sugar and bags of fake currencies are tossed into the fire to ask the gods for fortune and protection for the new year.
Getting around the twin cities of El Alto and La Paz is made easy by the use of the world first cable cart transit system called the Mi Teleférico. Cities have paved roads but intercity travel through roads can become a bit uncomfortable since some ‘highways’ are not adequately paved. Bolivia also has a developing railway system. Bolivia is landlocked country but has free port agreements with Chile, Argentina and Brazil.
There are many five star hotels in Bolivia. However, more economical hotels are also available
- Hotel La Mision
- Hotel Rio Selva Resort Santa Cruz
- Hotel Hacienda De Kaluyo
- Hotel El Viejo Molino