If you’re heading off to study the spectacular local wildlife or to learn how the locals survive in the Andes, boost your local knowledge with these 24 facts about Bolivia before you go!
- Bolivia is a vast, landlocked country in South America.
- It is bordered by Peru to the northwest, Brazil to the north and east, Paraguay to the southeast, Argentina to the south and Chile to the southwest.
- Fancy heading off to explore the glorious dense jungle or the dizzying heights of the Andes? Head for the coordinates 16.7120° S, 64.6660° W to find yourself in Bolivia!
- The terrain here is dominated by the Andes mountains and highland plateau, while the dense rainforest of the Amazon Basin features an incredible range of wild animals.
- The total land area of Bolivia is 424,164 square miles (1,098,581 square kilometres)…
- …that’s more than 4 times the size of the UK.
- Bolivia’s population was 10.8 million in 2015…
- …that’s around 1/6th of the UK population!
- Residents here are known as Bolivians.
- Bolivia has two capital cities, Sucre (the constitutional capital) and La Paz (the administrative capital). Sucre had a population of 372,000 in 2015, whilst La Paz had a population of 1.8 million in 2015.
- The climate in Bolivia varies with altitude, from humid and tropical in the lowlands to cold and semiarid in the highlands.
- Standing at 12,507 feet above sea level, Lake Titicaca is the world’s highest lake!
- La Paz also happens to be the highest capital city in the world, at an incredible 11,913 feet above sea level!
- Bolivia is home to one of the most dangerous roads in the world. The North Yungas Road, otherwise known as ‘The Road of Death’, claims the lives of around 200-300 individuals each year.
- Only around 30% of the roads in Bolivia are ‘paved’!
- At an incredible 4,086 square miles, the Salar de Uyuni is the largest salt flat in the world. In comparison, the world famous Bonneville Salt Flats in the USA is only 40 square miles!
- The official languages of Bolivia are Spanish, Quechua and Aymara, although there are around 33 other indigenous languages spoken here too!
- Bolivian Boliviano is the official currency of this wonderful country.
- Bolivia apparently gained its name in commemoration to Simon Bolivar who played a vital part in gaining independence from Spain.
- The average life span here is 63 years.
- Bolivia grows coffee, soybeans, coca and cotton; they also produce timber here.
- Its industry consists of mining, smelting, food, beverages, tourism and petroleum.
- Bolivia exports natural gas, soybeans, gold, zinc and wood.
- If you’re looking to go backpacking through this beautiful country or you’re intending on staying a little longer and starting up a new life here, your friends and family can call you cheaply through Cherry Call. Don’t forget to use the international dialling code of 00591.
For all the latest news in Bolivia, head over to the EA Bolivia website. We’ll warn you though, you’ll need to speak Spanish!