Posted by: Ali | September 11, 2009

Epic Journey to Bolivia

I hate travelling. I like seeing new things but I really hate the getting there part.

So, I went on an overnight bus to Copacabana, from Cusco. Copacabana is pretty much the closest town to Peru that´s in Bolivia. First of all, I was led to believe that the whole journey would take 6 hours. Then when I actually bought the ticket, the guy told me it would leave at 10pm and arrive at 8am. Yay! I love sleeping on buses! (Very, very not)

The bus itself was reasonably okay, all things considered. The chairs reclined a lot, they gave us blankets, and there was no one next to me so I could sprawl all over the place. But. At about 7am, a girl wakes me up and informes me that since I am going to Copacabana, I have to get off this bus, which is going to La Paz, and get onto a new bus.

This is where the fun begins. I got off the bus on the side of the highway, where another bus was stopped. Then it started to drive away without me! I panicked briefly, then the girl pointed at this tiny little van that already had about 8 people in it and said, no, that´s the bus to Copacabana.

Okay, so I got in, getting the last seat. Then we get not five minutes down the road when the driver stops to pull over and pick up a hitch-hiker. We kindof groan (all of the passengers in this bus are all gringos) but he sits up front with the driver. Then ten minutes later, we pull over. Yes, more hitch-hikers. The best part is, it was three children, none of them older than about 10, hitch-hiking at 7am. I figure out a few minutes later that they are on their way to school.

Then we arrive at the border and are told to get out and walk. We go to two different immigration offices before crossing the border. I am carrying my “ugly ghost” toy which I have been using as a travel pillow, all the officers at the border love him and ask his name.

Then we cross the border (go through an archway!) and get our passports stamped on the other side, and get in a new bus. Apparently if I had chosen to take an earlier bus to Copacabana then I would have had more trouble. I was talking to fellow adventurers and discovered that when they were walking over the border there was a bullfight, on the road, at the border crossing. And then the locals laughed and let the bull loose to chase after the gringoes. I shit you not.

The Bolivian border - note the blue numbers on either side... they're seat numbers for the bullfighting

The Bolivian border - note the blue numbers on either side... they're seat numbers for the bullfighting

So needless to say, by the time I finally got into Copacabana I was exhausted, and rented a room, and crashed until about noon.

Highlight of the trip: seeing Lake Titicaca at sunrise.  Unfortunately I was too out of it to get a good picture.


  1. You said titicaca…
    You know a part of me thinks that sounds like an awesome lake but then theres the caca…


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