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best way to get to bolivia from brazil?

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1. Posted by laura_uk (Budding Member 21 posts) 11y

laura_uk has indicated that this thread is about Brazil

heya me and my boyfriend are going to be in brazil in early july, we're planning on booking some spanish lessons in bolivia (cochobamba) but are landing in Rio de Janeiro!!
we were thinking about getting some kind of bus or coach stopping off at various point on the way.

has anyone any idea of...
a) how long max it will take us?
b) a good bus/coach company to go with?
c) whether this is even a good idea!
d) and of any 'must see places' to stop off at?

help much appreciated
love Laura and Dom XxX

2. Posted by Travel100 (Travel Guru 1556 posts) 11y

Hi Laura,

A couple days ago there was a thread posted about the same trip, in the oppisite direction (Bolivia to Rio). Chick the link to check it out, it may have some useful Info.:

http://www.travellerspoint.com/forum.cfm?thread=11603

3. Posted by Travel100 (Travel Guru 1556 posts) 11y

Also the last post on that thread is by a Dutch guy "janszham
" who actually lives in Cochobamba right now. He probably would have up-to-date info. on both the trip you're inquiring about here as well as some additional info. for you on Cochobamba.

By the way, I really liked Bolivia when I was there. Make sure and check out lake Titicaca while you're in the neighborhood.

Are you guys gonna try and get over to Peru while you're there?

Where do you fly out of South America to return home? How long will you be in South America?

4. Posted by laura_uk (Budding Member 21 posts) 11y

Are you guys gonna try and get over to Peru while you're there?

Where do you fly out of South America to return home? How long will you be in South America?

thanks for the great advice!!
and Peru is definatly on the cards, we have 10 weeks (we're in S'A from july 11th till mid sept- in between uni terms!) so it depends on if we run out if time or not!
we fly out from Rio de janeiro aswell which is a bit of a pain but it means we got a good deal on tickets!!
and we are deff going to lake titicaca, thats why we picked a spanish school in bolivia!!

keep the advice coming guys! thanks again

5. Posted by Travel100 (Travel Guru 1556 posts) 11y

Sounds like a great couple months.

I did it in the other direction, starting in Cusco and ending in La Paz, but it's not hard to get from La Paz to Peru & Machu Picchu. It takes a day to travel, by bus, around Lake Titicaca to Puno (on the Peruvian side). Then you can spend a couple days taking trips out to some of the Islands (Uros, Isla Taquile, etc.) on the Lake.

Then to train ride is a really nice one (10/hrs.) from Puno to Cusco. You can then do Machu Picchu on a day (long) trip form Cusco. Although, I'd recommend spending the night in Aqua Caliente, that way you can spend a lot longer up on Machu Picchu after the people who took the day trip have to leave the mountain to get their train back to Cusco.

6. Posted by michellemm (Full Member 109 posts) 11y

Hello Laura!

I've done the trip Sâo Paulo - Bolivia once, but I went by car.
Rio is kind of close to São paulo, so there's probably not much of a difference...

Rio is about 1500km (not miles) far from the border. You go to the bus station in Rio and there are not many bus companies that go there. You should take about 1 1/2 days to get there...

The "must see places" are all in the Mato Grosso do Sul state, which are the Pantanal (a big area with an imense flora and fauna) there are some farms that take you to nice journeys, but you should probably go to a travel agency to arrange you that. And also a little town called Bonito. This place is wonderful!!! Check on the internet you'll read many things about it.

Well, if you want my opinion. I think it's better to take a flight to Cuiabá (which is the capitol of Mato Grosso do Sul state) and, from there, go to Bonito. When you get to Bonito, go to a travel agency (there's also a youth hostel there with many foreigners) and ask them to arrange you a tour to the best places of Bonito and also to the Pantanal.

Have a nice trip!

7. Posted by janszham (Full Member 35 posts) 11y

hi laura,
which spanish school are you planning to go to?
Bolivia is a great country and you get here about the right time. The festival season is just started. Around 5th aug there is the fiesta of the "virgin de urkupina". A lot of dronken locals but great to see traditional dances in all kinds of customs.
When will you be in Bolivia?

8. Posted by laura_uk (Budding Member 21 posts) 11y

Thanks for the help! I've made a note of all the places you recommended.
We'll be in bolivia from late july - in the Escuela Runawasi language school (http://www.runawasi.org/en/index.html) for 2 weeks, then making our way to machu pichu, then back into bolivia for an amazon adventure and hopefully the festival that was mentioned - where is the best place to see some drunk locals and dancing??! sounds great we really can't wait! Laura has only been out of the country (england) once, and that was on a school trip to germany!

Dom and Laura

9. Posted by janszham (Full Member 35 posts) 11y

I hope you will be prepared to see some shocking things like poor people and how they live. Bolivia is the poorest country in South America. But for me it is the most interesting one.
There is a really good (but quite small) festival in Tiquipaya near Cochabamba in the first week of october. Amazing costums! There is a tourist office in Cochabamba where they have all the info of all the festivals each month in the Cochabamba area. Not many people know about this one. It is in calle Colombia vlakbij Ely's pizza place (crap).

10. Posted by Travel100 (Travel Guru 1556 posts) 11y

Quoting janszham

There is a really good (but quite small) festival in Tiquipaya near Cochabamba in the first week of october. Amazing costums!

I saw a festival in Northern Chile, that seemed very Bolivian (maybe it was in that area of Chile, that Chile kind of kept, after the last war ).

Anyway, like janszham says, the costums were amazing and it was very cool. I'd definitely try and see a festival while you're there.

The one I saw was at La Tirana, Chile and was for the Virgen del Carmen.