Calle Tarija at Plaza Gastón Velasco is just one of many places where you can admire this beautiful art. Behind it we come directly to an artists’ market.
Dealers offer fabrics and clothing made from alpaca wool, toys, musical instruments and pictures. It’s a mecca of color and we’d love to take it all with us.
Most of the shops in this one are operated by Cholitas. The ponchos, bags and blankets follow the patterns we see on the cholitas themselves in the country.
Alpaca sweaters and hats are also available for Leon. Despite the manual work and the many tourists, the prices are low and Leon can look forward to a new wardrobe.
We also see people in costume heading to an event. We encounter women with revealing colorful dresses and a man wearing a large mask over his costume.
They have a performance to dance to, but are happy to be photographed by us with Leon.
After our breakdown at 4703 meters we have plenty of time to get to know La Paz. This city fascinates and shows us many of its faces. We see the contrasts of modernity and tradition on every corner. Through the teleféricos we can easily get to any part of the city and see the full extent of it and its mountains above the clouds.
On the streets we see business people next to traditionally dressed women, the cholitas that give La Paz its special personal character. These tradition-conscious women are also business-savvy, running kiosks for newspapers and fruit, but also magical paraphernalia for everyday spells. And they can fight!
The streets of La Paz are lined with high-rise glass buildings and crumbling old buildings. However, you can find incredibly beautiful street art in all neighborhoods. The artist quarter with its market is characterized by special graffiti. But the city’s huge cemetery, the Cementario General de La Paz, is not only a place of rest for the dead, but a small town in its own right, in which the deceased are commemorated with sadly beautiful murals.
As we leave the city, our car struggles again with the steep incline and altitude. Finally we reach the legendary Lake Titicaca via the Altiplano and stumble upon the traces of Thor Heyerdahl’s Kon Tiki.