During our Salar de Uyuni tour, we met 2 French guys who had recently done a trek in a less touristy part of Bolivia. They highly recommended the trek and it sounded interesting, so we contacted David Lebras from San Pedro Tours and made our way to the town of La Higuera (the town where Ernesto Che Guevara was executed). The journey to get to the town was a journey in itself!… but we'll leave that for another post. :)
Cochabamba is suppose to be known for its culinary experience but if you ask us, it should be known for its market: If you want anything, you can probably find it in La Cancha.
"La Cancha" in English means sports field... and this is how it all started - this area used to have football (soccer) fields where ladies with carts came to sell food and drinks. Over time, the football fields disappeared and were replaced by market stalls. Now La Cancha is massive, with multiple markets spanning several square blocks (including a converted train station), and pouring into the streets in every direction. Each little shop/stall is, on average, about 2-3 meters wide which means that there are probably thousands of stalls!!…. We've been to many markets in our travels and we were both absolutely blown away by the size and variety at this one!For our day of exploration, we set out to find a small guitar for Jen. After 1.5 hours of asking a lot of directions and walking in circles through the narrow aisles, we finally found what we were looking for!! It was quite the exciting and exhilarating search… along the way we saw stalls selling everything from live chickens, cameras, vegetables, suits, fabric, tools, electronics, bike parts, and of course food... just to name a few. And, we are now proud owners of a small, inexpensive (180 Bolivianos ~= 30usd) guitar to play around / practice on during our travels :).
Overall, we haven't really been blown away by the foods we've tried here so far, EXCEPT that we accidentally stopped in at this Empanada/Saltena shop called Wist'upiku and haven't been able to stop going there since - we just can't get enough of their cheese or chicken empanadas!! Yum!!
We stopped in a small colonial town called Sucre in the centre of Bolivia. From here it's a great place to either do some excursions in the surrounding areas, or chill out in the town and take spanish lessons. In our case, we decided to just take it easy and mainly visit the town while planning out our next steps.
While we were in the Uyuni Salt Flat, we encountered the God of the Salar... which was really nice. To thank us for visiting, he offered us giant Oreos… I can't even begin to tell you how happy Dominic was… they were so goooooooood!!! He also offered us some beer which Jen, so as not to offend him, took a sip of. She liked it so much that she crawled in the bottle and drank it all… the problem was, it also had the side effect of shrinking her to a tiny tiny person! In order to fix the problem, Dominic picked her up and blew her a kiss… so everything return to normal.
Hehe, no.. in reality, the salt flat is so huge and flat that for some reason we lose the sense of perspective so can do these crazy perspective photos. Here are a couple shots from the-making-of:
The last stop of our tour was the Uyuni Train Cemetery. The town of Uyuni used to be a railway hub but after all the mines dried up, the trains were left to rust and flounder for future tourists to visit :). If your tour does not go there it's only a 30 minute walk from Uyuni……and definitely worth the trip!