ISSUE 62

RELEASE DATE: 22 Jun, 2016

EDITORIAL BY William Wroblewski

For most travellers who visit, Bolivia is not a place to sit still. The country offers a variety of must-see and must-do attractions that are spread out across far-reaching distances. Many backpackers here grow accustomed to the 12-hour overnight bus ride. The Salar de Uyuni, the jungle rivers outside of Rurrenabaque, the shores of Lake Titicaca, the colonial architecture of Sucre – any of the most visited destinations in Bolivia are found in all corners of its tremendous geography.

One cannot stay put in one city or location and come close to understanding what Bolivia is. To truly learn about Bolivia is to travel across it, to experience the variety of wonders it has to offer the adventurous visitor. It is in this process of travelling to other destinations that, along the way, you see the true Bolivia – the sleep-deprived bus driver; the friendly kiosk owner at the crossroads; the passenger next to you finally making the trip home after a semester at school. Sometimes the seemingly endless bus rides here feel like a blessing, given the opportunities to meet new people and to take in a variety of landscapes. For certain, these travels are central to the Bolivian experience.   

In this issue of Bolivian Express, we looked at various journeys, both physical and metaphorical, to understand the variety of paths people in Bolivia have taken. We traveled by train across the altiplano, from the mining city of Oruro to the salt flats at Uyuni. We heard legends of great explorers who came to Bolivia in search of riches, and sent our writers out to find their own treasures along the Choro Trial and among La Paz’s culinary hotspots. We danced with our neighbors through the barrios of La Paz to celebrate the cultural history and tradition of Gran Poder. We explored the everyday-life journeys unique to Bolivia, from the process of becoming an adult to the taking of the streets by underrepresented corners of society desperate to have their voices heard. We even traveled outside this country to experience the culinary and cultural hotspots of other places to better understand the wonders found here.  

In all our journeys taken to create this issue, we returned home with a better understanding of Bolivia, and hope to share our findings with you here. Most importantly, we understood that this is a large country, and it is important that those who come here give themselves the opportunity to see wide swaths of it, to not just stay in one place and call that Bolivia. Hopefully, this issue of Bolivian Express will be a reminder that the joy is in the traversing. The journey isn’t just arriving from Point A to Point B; it is everything in between.

ARTICLES FROM THIS ISSUE

The Garden of Eden

22 Jun, 2016 | Jerusa Pozo

Photo: Jerusa PozoJardín de Asia, in Zona Sur’s Calacoto neighbourhood, is the David Carradine of La Paz’s restaurant scene. And I mean the best of David Carradine: hot, with Asian inflections and an...

Light at the End of the Tunnel

22 Jun, 2016 | Sareena Kamath

Photos: William WroblewskiAlong the desolate outskirts of the west Andean town of Uyuni lies a dumping ground for abandoned locomotives, some dating back to the 19th century. Walking beside the long-f...

Faces of the Choro

22 Jun, 2016 | Daniel Viveros

Photos: Jules TusseauMeeting the people along one of Bolivia’s most beloved trailsEven if one feels prepared for the cold wind at the summit, a hiker here still has to face a soul-penetrating humidity...

Dancing through Difference

22 Jun, 2016 | Sareena Kamath

An Exploration of the Various Cultural Identities Showcased at Gran PoderPhotos: Sareena Kamath, William Wroblewski and Valeria WildeLa Fiesta de Señor Jesús de Gran Poder, often called Gran Poder for...

It’s Not Always a Winning Game

22 Jun, 2016 | Anna Grace

Journeys of a Restless Traveller in South AmericaImage: Valeria WildeAn eventful journey, a nomadic paradise, a transient hell – travelling is many things. But one thing remains certain: the traveller...

Coming of Age in Bolivia

22 Jun, 2016 | Karina Guzmán

The Local Road to AdulthoodIllustration: Richard Sanchez JaillitaGrowing up is never easy. Around the globe, we have witnessed the so-called Peter Pan generation increasingly put-off adulthood and ref...

Adventuring in the Amazon

22 Jun, 2016 | Sareena Kamath

Illustration: Mauricio WildeThe Curious Case of Colonel Fawcett and His Search for ZOften referred to as a real-life Indiana Jones, Percy Harrison Fawcett was no stranger to mystery and adventure. Bor...

Chile and Peru

22 Jun, 2016 | Anna Grace

A Culinary AdventurePhoto: Anna Grace'What was the food like?' is a common question posited by friends and family to those who return from a trip abroad because many countries have a cuisine that is r...