Now we need to get back to Peru ASAP. This meant back tracking the 156 Km on the RN 5 to Potosi and then go 303 km north on the Pan-American to Oruro.

Screen Shot 2014-05-26 at 5.17.54 PM

tiwanaku 7

The entire distance is under construction with constant desvios (detours). We cannot understand why they don’t just do the road in 20 km stretches to completion and then move on. Now there is 300 km of mayhem. There are a huge number of transport trucks and busses too all belching black smoke. We also saw some snow on the way.

tiwanaku 9

tiwanaku 10

Now we are in striking distance of the border.

Screen Shot 2014-05-16 at 8.02.04 PM

The RN 1 north goes directly thru La Paz. The road conditions are pretty bad and there are hundreds of mini busses jostling for position and passengers. We had decided to try to bypass as much of the city as possible and too the Rt 9 southwest to Viacha. There is then a connector road back to the RN 1 at the indigenous town of Laja.

Screen Shot 2014-05-16 at 8.04.37 PM

This is 20 km of dirt or as it was today mud for much of it. The dryer parts had two tracks to ride on except when the transport trucks were oncoming and you had to pull off onto the muddy shoulder. That said the first few km and then a few deep mud sections after this were the worst.

tiwanaku 12

tiwanaku 13

tiwanaku 15

tiwanaku 16

tiwanaku 17

tiwanaku 18

tiwanaku 20

The town of Laja is filled with people in traditional costumes.

tiwanaku 26

tiwanaku 22

tiwanaku 23

tiwanaku 24

tiwanaku 25

Then it was only another 35 km to Tiwanaku.

tiwanaku 28

tiwanaku 29

tiwanaku 30

tiwanaku 32

tiwanaku 35

tiwanaku 36

tiwanaku 48

tiwanaku 45

tiwanaku 46

tiwanaku 49

tiwanaku 50

This town is set on the Altiplano as is the ruins of the ancient city of Tiwanaku or Tiahuanaco.


tiwanaku 41

It was founded 3000 years ago and lasted about a thousand years and had a population of about 50,000. In Bolivia and Peru the highlands and lowlands are divided by an imaginary northwest-southeast axis aligned by water bodies, making Tiwanaku the axis point. The city was the center of Andean civilization and was the inspiration for the Inca Empire.

tiwanaku 42

tiwanaku 43

The site is fairly nice with signs and a guide paper in “English”.

tiwanaku 51

tiwanaku 52

tiwanaku 54

tiwanaku 55

tiwanaku 65

tiwanaku 67

tiwanaku 63

There was an amazing sunken plaza where the walls were covered with stone masks.

tiwanaku 72

tiwanaku 74

tiwanaku 76

tiwanaku 78

tiwanaku 79

tiwanaku 81

tiwanaku 83

tiwanaku 86

tiwanaku 87

tiwanaku 93

There are several nice arches and statues too.

tiwanaku 99

tiwanaku 106

tiwanaku 109

tiwanaku 113

There is also a museum housing artifacts of ceramic.

tiwanaku 125

tiwanaku 128

tiwanaku 133

This entry was posted in Bolivia. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Tiwanacu

  1. marg hewson says:

    Wow what a road! Bet you were glad of a long hot shower after that1. Statues a bit reminiscent of easter island or is that just my imagination?
    Sara back for another stint in the wards??Whitehorse or vancouver? Enjoy your summer. Pretty amazing 2 years of travel. Hugs Marg

  2. Ruth LENNON says:

    Hi there. Welcome home. I’m sure that you are happy to be back in your own place after 2 amazing years. We have really enjoyed your journey. Thank you for sharing it with us.
    Hugs auntie ruth and uncle gordon.

  3. Dorothy McWatters says:

    I have enjoyed your many spectacular pictures along the way ????publish D/Mom

  4. Erik Motoman says:

    Bet you are de-compressing now! Welcome home. Love your photos and comments.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *