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Mat and Vendy's travels

Minibus, coach, bus, ferry, bus!

BOLIVIA | Thursday, 14 August 2008 | Views [1060]

Our journey to Bolivia started at 7.15am, where we were loaded into a minibus which took us to the bus station. I think the driver was crazy, and he did actually force himself onto the wrong side of the road, rather than use the part of the road going in our direction. Funny enough, no one except the people in our bus seemed to mind that much!!

From there we took a coach to Copacabana, but half way there was the border crossing into Bolivia. Not so difficult to understand as coming into Peru, but still not straight forward, the driver explained what we had to do and told us to meet the bus in twenty mins.

We went to one office to get our passport stamped, while waiting in the queue, the strangest thing happened - a boy came up to Vendy and asked her in Czech if he could shine her shoes! We looked at him in shocked disbelief! After going into the office, and going in the wrong direction, he told us to go into another office, this time in English. When we came out he gave us his full repertoir in Czech, very impressive for a 10 year old Peruvian boy! Then he showed us a 10 crown coin and asked what it was worth. We changed it for soles for him and he looked very pleased.

Then we crossed into Bolivia, which didnt seem any different, and by this time our twenty mins was up, but most people from our coach were still in Peru! We filled in our forms and took them to the office. 

About an hour later we were all finally on board the coach to Copacabana. We arrived at 11.30 and had to wait until 1.30 for the bus to La Paz. Copacabana didnt seem anything special so we went for a drink to waste some time and then came back to get on the local bus to La Paz. 

There were far too many people waiting and it looked like a disaster as we all piled in to get our bags onto the roof but eventually a second bus came and all was well. We got away a bit late, but at least we were off.

The journey was great, with wonderful views of Lake Titicaca and the snow capped Andes mountains. Then, after an hour we had to get off the bus to get a ferry. this was strange, the ferry was a speedboat! Twenty or more passengers got on and then a driver got on. We quickly noticed there were only 4 lifejackets on board, which was a little scary - and then we saw our bus loaded onto a flat floating platform and was also floated across. The crossing was short (luckily) and the lifejackets not needed, and then we waited for our bus to arrive and from here it was an uneventful journey to La Paz.

We arrived at around 5.30pm, and we had heard it was a crazy place where you dont need to go into any shops cos everything is sold in the street and it was immediately obvious this was true! People were everywhere, on the road, on the street - market stalls everywhere! It looked great. One small problem was the walk from the bus stop to the hotel, with all our things - but like our guide said, ´intrepidos, lets be intrepid!´ The streets are mayhem here but its great.

Welcome to Bolivia

 

Tags: bolivia, copacabana, ferry, la paz, peru

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