The best outdoor things to do in Sucre, BoliviaMay 3, 2018
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Sucre, Bolivia's capital city
Sucre is one of the two of Bolivia’s capital cities. Yes, weird as it is Bolivia might be the only country in the world with two capitals – Sucre and La Paz. While Sucre is the de facto capital, La Paz is the administrative capital with the seat of government. Bolivia’s capital city Sucre is a beautiful colonial city situated in the southern highlands of the country. Sucre lies at the altitude of 2810 m which makes it a good starting point for higher places like La Paz, Potosi or Uyuni. It’s also called the white city, due to its numerous white colonial buildings and walking on the streets of Sucre I not once thought “Wow, everything is white”. Many travelers choose Sucre for their Spanish lessons and stay here weeks caught by its unusual charm, spending time in european-like cafes and decent restaurants and bars.
How can you spend time in Sucre?
If you’re less curious about learning Spanish and more interested in spending time outdoors while visiting this marvelous city, there are several things to do in Sucre, ranging from trips to barely-visited rural villages, to trekking through peculiar Bolivian villages. If you are not limited by time, I definitely recommend spending few weeks here. There is also plenty of volunteering options giving you enough budget-friendly time to discover all the great things to do in Sucre.
What are the best outdoor things to do in Sucre?
The rolling landscape of the Andes is the first clue towards the main things to do in Sucre, Bolivia. You will find here treks through a surreal selection of ancient landmarks, dinosaur footsteps, and hidden tiny villages, all coupled with the feeling that you’ve somehow stepped back in time. Though trekking in Bolivia is not as popular as in many other South American countries, particularly because paths are difficult to find, in today’s modern time with GPS tracks and mobile apps is nothing a medium experienced backpacker couldn’t bear with.
#1 Best trekking around Sucre, Bolivia
If trekking is what you like, then this might be the main activity to spend time in Sucre, Bolivia. There are several trekking paths around this Bolivia’s capital city. You can set your foot on the road to Las Siete Cascadas (The Seven Waterfalls) or head to the two to three days trek to Maragua crater. Both treks are well marked on maps.me, though many articles you find online speak about people getting lost.
We have read some bad reviews about the waterfalls, therefore decided to head towards the Maragua crater with spectacular panoramic views of the strange, multi-colored swirling rocks, a stretch of fossilized dinosaur footprints, 2,000-year-old cave paintings and a section of well-preserved Inca trail. Finding the way with the assistance of our mobile app was not a problem at all. If you don’t dare to go alone, there is a bunch of agencies offering this trips, one I could recommend is the Condor Trekkers, which give a lot back to the poor communities in the rural areas.
#2 Spend your time in Sucre by climbing at Sica Sica
Bolivia has a surprising number of places for going climbing and, whatever your level and previous experience, the mountains surrounding Sucre offer a range of walls to try – all with spectacular views. If you are a beginner or don’t have your equipment with you, don’t worry, there is an agency Climbing Sucre, with experienced English speaking guides and everything you need. It is also the cheapest one you will find in South America, as we learned from a fellow climbing enthusiast.
I contacted Roccio just one day in advance and her prompt answer and organization skills made sure, we could spend time in Sucre climbing one of the easier walls of Sica Sica. There are several “paths” up on the wall, from very easy one to quite hard one, but thanks to Roccio advice and instructions, we all managed to make it safely to the top several times.
#3 Go for a hike to Cerro Churuquella
Bolivia’s capital city is surrounded by small hills, which make a great viewpoint as well as a great way how to spend time in Sucre. We have chosen one afternoon to hike to one of the small hills called Cerro Churuquella, which lies right next to the Sica Sica and offers a great view of the city. The path there is quite easy to find, either with google maps or with maps.me, and nice stone carved steps lead to the top – I counted them on the way back, its 969 of them, was quite disappointed it’s not a thousand.
While this place offers great views of the city, the surrounding is not that charming. So if you think you gonna have an afternoon picnic here, just forget about it. Remains of sacrifices and ash are everywhere, accompanied by beer cans and plastic bottles. There also seems to be a trash disposal place nearby, attracting annoying street dogs that would not let you enjoy your picnic in peace. Bolivia still has tons of work to do regarding educating people about environmental issues…
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#4 Stroll through the streets and parks of the white Bolivian capital
Though this is not an outdoor activity in its original sense, a walk through the city is an afternoon well spent. We had a great time in Sucre just wandering through its wonderful streets, discovering hidden places, charming cafes, and European-like restaurants and bars. On one of our walks w also found the places with the best view of Sucre –La Recoleta.
La Recoleta is a nice plaza with café and viewpoint, where you can chill and enjoy a cup of coffee, a glass of juice or delicious pizza while watching the white roofs of this Bolivian capital city. It is also a great spot to make tons of wonderful Instagram photos. If you haven’t done so yet, here is also a great spot to make shopping for souvenirs. Near the café is a small art market, selling all the typical Bolivian handcraft, as well as a small museum of textile art.
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The best outdoor things to do in Sucre, Bolivia