Saturday, July 16, 2011

La Paz

Cristian, from the Casa del Ciclistas, was away for a vacation, so we went to Hotel Alem (35 Bs, including a modest breakfast), 200m from there. This hotel has about 60 rooms, but only 8 other people stayed there.


The first evening in La Paz we celebrated in a nice pizzeria in the main street next to our hotel, Illampu. You can order there whatever you want on your pizza (80 Bs for a huge pizza). We also ordered pretty good instant soups and freshly squeezed fruit juice jar of papaya and orange. One of the waiters went to buy fruit just for this juice. This restaurant was on the second floor, so maybe that is the reason why it was 20% cheaper than the exact same restaurant in front. In this street you can also find signs in Hebrew in almost every shop or restaurant.


Some of them tell you not to buy in another shop meant for Israelis. We passed the opportunity of buying a fleece jacket with a logo in Hebrew for choice (80 Bs). The first few days in La Paz we spent in the internet place (3 Bs per hour) in front of our hotel, that was surprisingly faster than all other places we checked in the center. The third day Shoham spent in bed, as she got food/water poisoning, while Amit explored the electronics street, Max Paredes, checking prices of thousands of computers and cameras.


He found out that prices for these things are the same as in Israel. He also took the cameras for fixing, but as they don´t have any spare parts, they couldn´t help us. Apparently, the man in the repair shop put a Bolivian spell on our old Canon camera that fell in the river a few months ago. He just turned the camera on, and it worked. We enjoyed very much the cheap fruit and the meals (up to 10 Bs) in the market´s alleys. In general, La Paz is one huge market, selling the same products for varying prices.


We bought alpaca wool clothing for 450 Bs in the 2 shops in front of our hotel. In the last evening we had great dinner in the arab restaurant 2 buildings up the street. We had 5 small dishes (10 Bs each): filled cabbage and grape leaves, spinach pastry, bad Falafel and Humus with Pitas.


We ordered a large taxi to get to the bus station, but after 1 hour of waiting we gave up and just stopped one from the street (20 Bs including the bicycles). The bus station for buses to Copacabana (up to 20 Bs) is in the cemetery. There we had to put the bicycles on the roof by ourselves and even paid for it (20 Bs).


The view when getting out was as amazing as when we entered the city. On our way we had to get off the bus to cross the strait between the 2 parts of Titicaca lake by small boats (1.5 Bs). When we neared Copacabana the view became nicer and nicer.


For more photos of this post click here


                       Shoham & Amit
                     South America by Bicycle

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