Friday (Viernes) 4th June, 2010
Day 448

Potosi, Bolivia
Potosi, Bolivia
Miles: 45,573
S 19.58458°
W 65.75575°

Not withstanding an early start the town of Potosi was alive and bustling when we arrived. And so we had the pleasure of trying to navigate through dense vehicle and foot traffic to the hotel we hoped to stay at but for which we had only GPS coordinates and no address. As it turned out an address would not have helped as there were no signs naming the streets. Sharp observing by Nina who spotted the hotels sign, finally got us parked in a cobbled courtyard.

The city of Potosi has two main claims to fame. First it is the highest city in the world at 4050 m, a reality that we would feel acutely throughout the day. Secondly it is the home of Cerro Rico (rich mountain), literally a mountain of silver, the mining of which funded the Spanish empire for about 300 years.

"A popular boast was that the Spanish could have constructed a silver bridge to Spain and still had silver left to carry across it."

Nina had hoped to get some silver jewelry in this town so we spent the day walking around the centro area of the city looking for said jewelry. We did not find much jewelry but we did find other souvenirs. We also enjoyed the vibrance of the city. Lots of street markets, lots of people in traditional dress and just lots of people.


Residencial Tarija. We parked in the courtyard and had access to a toilet and shower. The place is well guarded.

It was a bit difficult to find so - here are some (hopefully helpful) directions.

  • get onto Antofagasta heading towards Cerro Rica

  • at GPS S19 35.119 W65 45.415 a strange looking 4 way intersection near a big church turn left into Civica. It took us a few loops of the Church to figure out that Civica was not one-way

  • go down Civica one block to GPS S19 35.049 W65 46.351 and turn right into Serrudo.

  • the entrance to Tarija and their sign is almost immediately on your right at GPS S19 35.075 S65 45.333

A little further up the same street (Serrudo) are two more possible hotels. Residencia Copocabana and Residencia Felcar. They both seem to have parking lots with large (no height restriction) gates. We did not check with them to see if parking without a room was possible.