Monthly Archive: September 2014


We spent two nights in Potosí on our way from Sucre to Tupiza.  We had originally planned on touring the famous silver mines there, but I had been struggling with a cold and wasn’t too keen on crawling through small passages holes in an active mine (ie – explosions going on during the tour) while sniffling and blowing my nose every 5 minutes, so we ended up spending our time alternating between eating and trying to stay warm.  Potosí is one of the highest cities in the world – 14,420 ft – and the weather was much colder than we had been used to.  Luckily, we haven’t been hit by altitude sickness yet, but I did have to stop and catch my breath after any uphill walking.

Here are just a few pictures from around town.

Potosi Streets Potosi Square Potosi Church Potosi Street 2 Potosi Church 2 Mine Potosi Church 3 View of Potosi

Turning 28 in Sucre

After we packed everything up in Cochabamba, we flew to Sucre just in time to celebrate my birthday! Quick side note on travel in Bolivia – flying is the way to do it! Buses are cheap, but flying is only a bit more and takes a fraction of the time. Buses from La Paz to Cochabamba and then Cochabamba to Sucre take 7-10 hours each, but flights are 30 minutes and cost $30-$40. We decided to forgo the 7-hour bus ride to Sucre for a $30 – 30 minute flight instead 🙂

Anyway, Sucre is a really nice, cool looking city. It is nicknamed “the white city” because all the downtown buildings are white.

Sucre Streets

White Church

White Street

It was much smaller than I had expected it to be – it only has a population of around 300,000 and when Brandon and I set off to explore the downtown area, we’d pretty much seen it all in an hour, including some really nice parks.



Park in Sucre

Bolivia loves parades and there were several of them both days we were there – midday and evening!

Day Parade

Night Parade

On my actual birthday, Brandon surprised me with some chocolate cake for breakfast and when we got going, we walked up to a square that overlooked the city and had a leisurely lunch with a nice view.

Brandon on Top!

View from lunch

On the way back we stopped at a chocolate shop that I had heard good things about to pick up more treats.

Para Ti

For dinner we went to a French restaurant called La Taverne where we splurged on our most expensive meal yet in South America. We had wine, shared a shrimp starter, ate steak for our main and then split tiramisu for dessert – all for $40!

Birthday Dinner



Goodbye Cochabamba!

Wow – we only left Cochabamba a little over a week ago, but it already feels longer than that!  We really enjoyed our month in Cochabamba – it was a bit hard to leave what felt a bit like “home”. We got into a really nice routine over the month that we were there and really enjoyed the organizations that we volunteered with.  Here we are at the office with the Fundacion Bosques Director, Bonnie.

Picture with Bonnie

Bonnie even took us on a field trip out into the mountains to an area they work in – and it was beautiful!

Field Trip

I got to brush up on my sewing skills to help out one of our housemates with a Feminine Hygiene project she was doing for her organization – she held a pad making party and I got to try my hand at making a belted pad!

Pad Construction

We’ll definitely miss the social aspect too – we met so many cool people and it was fun living with 6 other housemates – well, 7 if you count Bruno the dog.


We’ll also miss walking around the city. I can’t even count the times that we walked 30 minutes north of our house to the Recoleta neighborhood to poke around or to enjoy the more diverse food offerings.

Recoleta Strip


Kebab Dinner



Cochabamba Food

Sorry about the recent slow down on posting – since we settled in Cochabamba, we haven’t been as great about taking our camera out with us since we’ve been on “living here” mode vs “tourist” mode.  We head out of Cochabamba on Tuesday and are planning on being tourists for the next few days before we leave, so we will definitely have some more pictures of this city we’ve been living in coming soon.  Also – make sure to check out our updated itinerary page for where we are headed next!

We have been living in a house right across from a university here and one of the great things about living so close to all these students, is really cheap eats.  Food here is really inexpensive anyway (Brandon has been eating fried chicken, rice and french fries for lunch 4 times a week because it only costs $1.15!) but even more so from all the street stalls and carts that ring the university.

Street by University

Food Stalls

Here are some of the popular street foods that we’ve been eating and about what they cost in U.S. dollars.

$.30 Giant Doughnuts

Brandon and Doughnut


$.50 Pastel (giant fried pastry with a little cheese in it, sprinkled with powdered sugar).  There’s a lady on our corner who sets up a little restaurant on the street every morning and only sells pastels and juices.

Pastel Stand


$.50 Papa Rellena (potatoes stuffed with meat, cheese, veggies and fried – many times served with salad so I can pretend it’s healthy)

Erin with Papa Rellena


$.30 – $1 Empañadas/Salteñas (fried or baked pastry filled with a variety of things from just cheese to meat, veggies and cheese)


$.80 Trancapecho (heart attack sandwich – deep fat fried meat, deep fat fried egg, rice, carrots, french fries, ketchup, mustard and mayonnaise all stuffed in a giant bun)


If you haven’t noticed already, there is a lot of fried food here!  There are some healthy options though.  There are vendors selling fruit (especially giant pineapple slices) on most corners.

$.45 Fresh Squeezed OJ



$.85 Fruit and Yogurt Salad

Fruit Salad

Similar to many of the other South American cities, there are a few grocery stores but most of the produce is sold in open air markets.  We frequent two different ones here – one that is actually indoors called 25 de Mayo and another HUGE outdoor one called La Cancha.  For the most part, produce here is even cheaper than Ecuador.  Here’s a recent produce haul from La Cancha and the prices:

Market trip in Cochabamba

  • 12 Bananas $.85
  • Bag of tomatoes ~12 $.70
  • Pineapple $.45
  • Huge zucchini $.30
  • 2 eggplants $.70
  • Bag of peppers ~10 $.30
  • Bag of small red onions ~15 $.70

Total Price $4

Or if you are too lazy to even go to the market, every morning a man selling produce rolls a cart around our neighborhood selling oranges and bananas.

Fruit Cart


Pedestrian Day in Cochabamba

Today was the Day of the Pedestrian (Día del Peatón) here in Cochabamba.  Apparently 4 times a year the city declares a ban on driving to encourage the citizens to get outside and walk or bike around.  Sundays are usually pretty slow around here (and in every other South American city we’ve visited) with many businesses closed and not too many people out and about.  But not today!  There were so many people out enjoying the weather and traffic-less city.

Empty Streets

Cristo and Empty Streets

In the center of town there was a festival going on with lots of vendors and different activities. When the sun was out, it was pretty warm and there was a water truck on hand cooling down the crowd.

Around the Park

Exercise Activity

Relaxing in the Park

After walking around the festival for a while, we met up with a group of people from Sustainable Bolivia and relaxed and snacked in the shade.  If only every Sunday was like this one!