I landed in La Paz, Bolivia (elevation 4,000m), early in the morning on January 22nd. La Paz is the administrative capital of Bolivia, known for its distinctive geography and for being one of the highest capital cities in the world. Hello lack of oxygen and gorgeous views. Motto of La Paz: camine lento, come poco y duerme solo (walk slowly, eat little, and go to bed alone). Check.
I spent my first day in Bolivia in La Paz after landing at El Alto international airport. I met a nice Swiss fellow working on his PhD at the university in La Paz and he showed me some of the city.
here's where I was:
La Paz is shaped like a big bowl: directions are either up or down. Pray that where you need to go is down.
The system of cable cars in La Paz (El Teleférico) is pretty dang awesome. It costs 3Bs (less than 50 cents) to go one way. The red line was completed in early 2014, so it's still new and shiny, as well as fast and quiet. And the views are amazing.
The second time I came back to La Paz I got pretty back altitude sickness again. Rather than stay at altitude and go to the Salt Flats in Uyuni (up to 5000m in altitude), I went back down to Cochabamba (2300m) to get some air.
As a bonus, I found cheese ravioli in at La Luna café - not the best, but reminded me of home.