Introduction to La Paz
Congratulations! You are going to La Paz, one of South America´s most interesting and exciting cultural treasures. Despite what Lonely Planet has consistently said for over 10 years, La Paz is a bustling and relatively safe (take normal precautions) city especially when compared to other cities in Latin America. The legal terrority of the city is vast, stretching across hundreds of kilometres, varying in geographical character and altitude. Whle there are over 20 different neighbourhoods throughout, the city ¨center¨ is broken into 4 unique neighborhoods: Sopocachi, Central zone, San Pedro, and Miraflores. Each of these 4 neighbourhoods is different, known for their distinct characteristics and attractions.
- Sopocachi (where Rendezvous is located), a very relaxed and safe neighbourhood boasting many of the city´s best restaurants, bars, and nightclubs.
- The central zone or ¨historic center¨ as it is often referred to, is best known for the large concentration of government palaces, museums, colonial buildings, and the main branches of banks.
- The ¨touristic center¨ or the neighbourhood surrounding the Sagarnaga street and San Pedro Plaza is usually recognised for the concentration of travel agencies, markets, and touristic attractions.
- Miraflores is the least frequented of the 4 with far less destinations of interest with the exception of the futbol stadium and Laikakota park/viewpoint.
- La Paz located in west-central Bolivia, 68 km (42 mi) southeast of Lake Titicaca, is set in a canyon created by the Choqueyapu River and sits in a bowl-like depression surrounded by the high mountains of the altiplano.
- La Paz is the highest capital city (11,910 ft) in the world. The official capital is in Sucre but the working capital of government is La Paz.
- La Paz, officially known as Nuestra Señora de La Paz (Our Lady of Peace), also named Chuqi Yapu (Chuquiago) in Aymara, is the seat of government of the Plurinational State of Bolivia.
- With an estimated 789,541 residents as of 2015, La Paz is the third-most populous city (after Santa Cruz de la Sierra and El Alto).
- La Paz´s metropolitan area makes it the most populous urban area in Bolivia, with a population of 2.3 million inhabitants.
- La Paz has an elevation of roughly 3,650m (11,975 ft) above sea level, La Paz is the highest capital city in the world. Due to its altitude, the city has an unusual subtropical highland climate, with rainy summers and dry winters.
- The city´s unusual topography offers unique views of the city and the surrounding mountains of the Cordillera Real from numerous natural viewing points.
- La Paz is also home to both the longest and highest urban cable car network in the world