We flew into La Paz from Antogafasta via Santiago, Chile. La Paz being the highest capital in the world has a special place in every traveller’s heart. It is a sight to behold from air and walking the steep inclines is an experience one must have.
What we did to prepare for La Paz
While there are umpteen advisories on the net on how to deal with altitude sickness after landing in La Paz, I will share what we did in preceding 4-5 days.
- We spent previous 2-3 days in Atacama Desert in north Chile and went to places which were of similar altitude as La Paz.
- Stopped meat & alcohol consumption from 2-3 days prior to travel dates
- Ate multiple small meals rather than 2-3 big ones.
All the above helped us tackle the dreaded altitude sickness with ease. This phenomenon is so common at La Paz, that even the airport has an oxygen room for people who have just landed from plains/coast and are exhibiting symptoms.
How we reached from Airport to Downtown
Our host had arranged a cab for us at La Paz airport as per original plan. But what is Latin America, if everything happens smoothly. There was unfortunately a transport strike at La Paz the day we landed. All motorized transport was blocked from entering the city/downtown. We landed at about 9 am and our host told us that we should wait at airport till 5 pm. We were not ready to let go of our precious travel time by idling away at airport.
After few enquiries, we took the cab to Teleferico which is basically a ropeway used as a public transport. We took the yellow line to downtown and then walked till our apartment with the help of Google Maps. It was indeed an exciting introduction to the city. Public Transport as always gave us chance to interact with locals and for a change, provided such beautiful vistas.
Against all sane advice, we did walk with our backpacks on those inclines within one hour of landing.
Like India, Bolivia (La Paz) assaults your senses. Keep an open mind and embrace whatever is dished out to you. Trust me, it will make your travel better.
- Don’t take Altitude Sickness lightly. Prepare for it. Once it hits you, 2-3 days are ruined.
- Do take Teleferico once in La Paz. It gives a bird’s eye view of the city and is a must do.
- There is an Indian Restaurant named “Govinda” & a boutique one named “Namas Te” in La Paz for vegetarians