Bolivia Local Customs

  • Traditions and festivals
    by JessieLang
  • Cow suit
    Cow suit
    by JessieLang
  • Local Customs
    by ines2003

Bolivia Local Customs

  • Traditions and festivals

    La Paz Local Customs

    La Paz was celebrates Carnivale in late February, and shops in a two-block area of downtown sell elaborate costumes and masks. The costumes are very expensive, and some people rent them instead. (I don't know if the shops are open year round, or just in the months before Carnivale.) About 40,000-50,000 costumed dancers will be in the streets when...

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  • Altiplano..

    Altiplano..is the name of the upland plateau:12000ft=3660m in the Andes of Bolivia and Peru.Corn, Weath and Potatoes are the chief crops, mining is the principal industry. Bolivia has no access to the sea, like Paraguay, both had lost the Gran Chaco War..against Brazil and Argentina.La Paz is the Capital of Bolivia since 1898, the largest City and...

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  • weird coca cola bottles

    The coca cola bottles in Bolivia have a weird shape. (see picture)In most restaurants you can order a bottle instead of individual drinks. It works out cheaper.

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  • use coca tea against altitude sickness

    In Bolivia coca tea and the coca leaves are legal. Drinking the tea (and chewing the leaves) really helps against the altitude sickness. The tea looks discusting but tastes rather nice in my humble oppinion.Keep in mind that cocaine is very illegal, don't go that way!!!

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  • streets in La Paz

    I was very surprise to see order in de streets, and finally was possible to across the streets without running to other side. Like in Peru traffic is really caotic.

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  • Offerings to the Pachamama

    The Pachamama or Mother Earth is most important in Andean culture. There are shrines to Her in many of the high mountain passes. We stopped and showed our respect (in my case, with an offering of water) in the La Cumbre pass (~4800 m). When you see someone pour a small amount of their drink on the floor before starting to eat, it is their offering...

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  • Get a Pachamama for a Safe Journey

    My Aymara guide recommended that I get a Pachamama for a safe journey. I bought mine from a nice lady in the Witches' Market (20 Bs.). Martha sits right outside the Layq'a restaurant door near the corner of Linares and Sagarnaga.

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  • TERMINUS

    Et voila la descente est terminee..... on a bien merite une tite bierre !!!!!!Pour ceux qui seront sage, ils verront une video de la descente.... et oui j ai failli me mettre 3 fois dans le vide pour faire des video, que Mathieu a ordonne pour faire une video de quelques minutes.... Soyez patients!

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  • SACREMENT DE CALISSE QUE CA MOUILLE!...

    Passage a gai.... on est presque arrive au 1200m d altitude, la routre est coupee en 2 par un rio, pas de problemes on passe quand meme.on etait dans la neige il y a 3h, la on est dans les yungas, c est a dire le cote montagneux de la foret tropicale..... nous avont traverse 14 eco-systemes.... c etait bien chouette!

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  • C est par la je te dis!

    Bon ca c etait juste pour vous montrer qu il reste tout ca, et que j ai une vraie tete de vainqueur avec mon casque et mes lunettes!

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  • Probleme de voirie....

    Voila un bout de route qui a fini en bas....pas de securites, pas de prime de risque.... juste des paysans emboches a la va vite pour reparer la route de terre....regardez bien ils sont en bas, sans harnais.

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  • Un bus passe

    Ce qui est cool, c est lorsque l on passe sous les chuttes d eau gigantesques....vous voyez le bus sur l image?.... imagine le decor!

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  • Toujours faire gafe a la pente

    Une vue un peu plus degagee, toujours 2000m d apique...on en prend plein les bras sur cette route completement folle.....Pas moyen de croiser avec un camion ou un bus c est tellement etroit.... il y a des gens en permanense qui regulent plus ou moins le trafique....l an passe, une touriste a eu un probleme de frein, elle est allee tout droit faire...

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  • Attention a la pente

    2000m d apique et un cordon de terre en guise de routeon speed a plus de 20km/h, sur une route de chaotique et vraiment, vraiment, vraiment meince.Toujours dans les nuages ca caille toujours, mais ca vaut le coup d oeil!

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  • Tite vallee

    On part dans les nuages et la neige.En bas c est une vallee que l on va longer, mais vite delaisser pour foncer vers les gouffres.... vous allez voir...

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  • Le groupe en selle

    On enfourche les becanes.... des VTT avec freins a disque c est plus sur, est hot on y vaaaaaaaaaaaaps: RAISA, il faut se reveiller...

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  • Les pieds dans la neige

    Petite descente de 82km.....Altitude de depart 4700mAltitude d arrivee 1200mtemps de dessente, pauses comprises 4hVitesse... plus de 20kmh dans la caillasse yahoooooouuuuuuuuOn est arrive la en SHORT, il neige ca pelle, et il est 6h du matin.

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  • Tete dans le ...... Tartines dans le...

    Ce matin la a la PAZ on prend notre petit dejeuner avec les potes finois rencontres dans le Chaco Paraguayen, 1 mois plus tot.On ne se doute de rien, On part pour une dessente en VTT ........

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  • My Pachamama Works!

    I was in Cusco, Peru, when political demonstrations closed the airport in La Paz. I ended up flying to Lima and then Santa Cruz, Bolivia, to catch my flight back to the USA. I never made it back to La Paz; however, I had stored a suitcase there at the Hotel Rosario. It had many things in it, including the Pachamama that I got at the Witches'...

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  • Uyuni : Mummified - Momifie

    Next to the salt hotel of Atulchi, you may visit a small cavern where some mummies were discovered. Among them, a bucket, in which the mummified skeleton of a baby is resting. Yeah, kids should always be shut in buckets !!!Pres de l'hotel de sel d'Atulchi, on peut visiter une petite caverne ou des momies ont ete decouvertes. Parmi elles,un seau...

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  • Trinidad : The city of motorbikes.....

    It's the main transportation mean, so it's a real local custom here....C'est le moyen de transport principal, alors ca devient vraiment un truc typiquement local !!!

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  • Spanish Broom

    A plant that you see in many places at high elevation is what I call Spanish Broom (Spartium junceum). I actually have one in my yard in New Mexico. In Bolivia it is used as a landscape plant, but it is an introduced plant that you also see growing wild. It is drought resistant and has bright yellow flowers. The Aymaras believe you can make a tea...

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  • Fetish Basket

    Each witch in the market has her own basket of fetishes for strength, protection and healing, much like the Indian fetishes where I live in New Mexico. Well, we don't have the llama fetuses in New Mexico.

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  • Witches

    The witches' market in La Paz exists as evidence of the strong belief in tradition and mythology to be found in Bolivia. What is first seen as merely an accumulation of indistinguishable clutter is, on further exploration and attention, perceived to be a fascinating collection of remedies, good luck charms, trinkets, spells, potions and stuffed...

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  • Religion and Tradition

    Copacabana holds the famous "Dark Virgin of Copacabana" in its great colonial renaissance-style church, with other influences such as Indian baroque and Moorish. This mixture can not only be found in the architecture, but also in the religious beliefs, that mingle the Holy Virgin and the Pachamama as the same person!Outside the church you can find...

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  • Ancient traditions

    The cult to ancient gods, like Pachamama (mother Earth), still remains in Bolivia: the picture shows a kallawaya (priest) giving an offering to Pachamama at Isla del Sol (Sun Island). La Paz has a street called Calle de los Brujos (Conjurers' Street) where there are several stalls where people can buy things to make their own offerings, to ask for...

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  • Desfilo

    desfilo seems to be the main activity all around bolivia... at least at august. To have a desfilo you need:a group of desfiling companies made of1) several dancers2) a D&B band (I mean Drums and Brass but they're playing loops as well)3) a walking coreography4) fancy dresses5) lot of reharsal.actually reharsal are much more interesting to see than...

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  • a good stuff: adobe

    adobe is the way do build melting buildings.... on the altiplano is quite common to see abandoned house flattening down to ground.

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  • the most annoying part of the rubbish

    plastic, the world is not a basurero! in villa serrano before leaving the "restaurant" I went all down the street to "post" two empty bottles in the basurero.... and coming back I heard an old lady saying to someone near her "mira la disciplina...."... it's not disciplina it's just I do not like plastic .-)

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  • annoying rubbish

    unfortunately plastic is quite a problem here. If the first part of the rubbish recycling is quite good, eliminating almost all the biodegradable stuff plastic remains free to move and accumulate somewhere.even biodegradable is quite a matter in high bolivia as in a cold, no humidity ambient organic things tend to mummificate instead of...

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  • Language

    about 2/3 of the Population in Bolivia come from the ethnic groups of the Quechua and Aymara'sSpanish is the colonial Language, but 70% of Bolivians speak also Aymara, Quechua and other Dialects. Outside the big cities,many people don't speak spanish at all.*have a look at my PERU Travelouge and the Quechua Poem*I am associate with Oxfam NZ..took...

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  • Aymara Woman

    and her traditional dress and Bolderhat. looking at her and one looks back hundred of years, and in her face one can see her ancestors, people of rich culture and knowledge

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  • Housing

    the bearness on the Altiplano, the cold and wind. not much to find for a fire, no running water, just hardship. the Aymaras are forced to live of the Land, don't ask me why, an obscure political desicion from yesteryear. the Aymaras where often oposed to the political Leadership in the country

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  • Family Life

    Bolivian Familylife, especially that in rural areas,may includes Grandparents as well as parents and children, Grantparents take care of the youngsters, while both parents work or live outside of the home.Children are taught to be respectful of their Elders and often have therefore a close relationship with their Grandparents.Godparents play also a...

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  • National Costumes

    This picture was sent to me by my fosterchild Wilma. Here is a translation of what she wrote:"... I am sending you the photo of a child who shows you how our native authorities look like. As you can see, a native authority wears a poncho, a cap, a hat, a woolen bag called 'chuspa' and the authority cane...."

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  • Digging the wells were hard work

    Digging the wells were hard work, especially considering that they were all dug manually. One borehole would take a community approximately one week to construct. Since the water sanitary module were household-based, the entire community pitched in as each well was dug. Here I am in another community outside of Cochabamba digging a well...

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  • Baking in the Altiplano

    Collecting fuel for the fire was quite a task...especially since we were located above the tree line. Hours were spent collecting small shrub-like debris as well as llama dung--which was used to bake bread.

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  • Llamas

    I happened to witness the slaughtering of a llama while working in the altiplano. I've never seen two prouder men...

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  • A brew by any other name wouldn't smell...

    Though Bolivia is not regionalized as Peru when it comes to beer, many areas have their own local products. This is La Paz's Pilsner. Another good one was Potosina from Potosi.

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  • Aymara from the Altiplano Region

    Aymara Women spinning wool from Alpacas.Poverty is widespreat under the indigenous People of the Altiplano in Bolivia and Peru.They are forced to live of the Land on 12000ft, where it is pretty hart to get a decent crob going.Kineauwa, Grain on a Stalk..main diet.no running water, no electricity makes cooking quite an adventure.

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  • Carnival in La Paz

    We were fortunate to visit La Paz during carnival and got to see the parade and the festivities on that day! Although it was raining constantly, we saw people dancing and drinking beer all over the place - and that was very impressive!!!

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  • The Guarayos are one of few...

    The Guarayos are one of few Guarani tribes that still live in Bolivia. They have preserved their traditions through the centuries. Visit Guarayo villages of Urubichá, Ascención and Yotaú, 4 hours drive north of Santa Cruz. Make sure to get some of their excellent Indian Barroque music, it is very good. Guarayos were coverted to catholicism by...

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  • Maybe its a cliche to say...

    Maybe its a cliche to say this, but the best thing about Bolivia is the people. The rest of South America seems to write Bolivians off as the 'trash of the continent', by I found them quite the opposite. It is ironic that in the poorest country on the continent live the most generous people. Bolivians will take great interest in you. On the other...

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  • There are very few blacks in...

    There are very few blacks in Bolivia. So few that Bolivians consider it good luck to see one. They will point, smile and say 'good luck'. They may also want to rub the head of a black person visiting the region.

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  • Bolivianos

    Bolivianos are proud of their culture. They dress in tradional clothes and eat traditional foods. Respect their culture.

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Bolivia Local Customs

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