Before you go:
Bolivia travel advice when you are planning to travel to Bolivia.
Bolivia is a country of many contrasts not only in art, cuisine, literature, music, clothing and ethnic groups but also in geographic zones with different altitudes and climate. Therefore a flexible wardrobe is a must.
For a trip to a place located in the high altitude western region of the country, our recommendations on what to bring with you are:
- Warm clothes.
- Woolen socks.
- Hat to cover your ears and to protect you from the sun.
- Swimming suit.
- Lip moisturizer.
- Sun block 30+.
- Sun glasses.
- Raincoat (From December to March)
Choosing one of the places in the tropical areas of Bolivia means you need to prepare and equip yourself differently compared to when travelling to the Highlands of Bolivia.
We recommend you bring the following:
- Light summer clothes covering both arms and legs, preferably beige or green (especially for jungle trekking and Amazon boat trips).
- Repellent, sun block, sun glasses, hat and bathing suit.
- A pair of sneakers, walking shoes (boots) or any other kind of shoes for walking in the mud for the jungle trekking.
- Warm clothes for the winter months (between May and September) in case of cold wind from the south.
- To minimize the risk of tropical diseases or insect bites we strongly recommend the use of long sleeved shirts and pants during both day and night, and the use of repellent.
Note: Carry a copy of your passport, including entry stamp and disembarkation card with you at all times in case it is requested by immigration officials or the police.
Mental Preparation: When touring in Bolivia, particularly on tour trips to truly remote areas, keep in mind that you are travelling in sparsely populated areas where few people go. In these parts of the country, transportation, communication and other facilities are sometimes strained and delays can occur. Poor weather conditions or unforeseen events can also cause delays in the schedule.
We suggest the best mental approach is to relax, keep an open mind and concentrate on all the beauty surrounding you, this way you will enjoy your trip even more. You will find that the sights are worth any delays we may experience. This is our most important Bolivia travel advice.
Do you need a VISA to enter Bolivia?
Most nationalities only need a passport and do not require a visa to enter the country.
US citizens must have a visa to enter Bolivia. A visa is obtainable for a fee of US$160, along with a visa application form, hotel reservation or letter of invitation and International yellow fever vaccination certificate.
You can apply for a Bolivian tourist visa by mail or in person at Bolivian consulates in the U.S., as well as at Bolivian ports of entry, such as at Bolivia’s international airports and at land border crossings. We can send a letter of invitation to US citizens that book a trip with us.
For more information please check: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/consularnotification/bolivia.html
While you’re traveling:
Our Bolivia travel advice while you are travelling in Bolivia.
Ruta Verde is careful to construct the itineraries in an eco-friendly way. We travel in small groups, train our guides in “Leave no trace” ethics, we seek out excursions where the local and indigenous people get involved. Each trip you take is an opportunity to make a difference.
Be Respectful of Nature
- If possible walk/horse ride/bike only on designated trails. This prevents vegetation damage and erosion.
- Remember you are traveling through the animals’ backyard – observe all wildlife from a distance and don’t attempt to feed the animals.
- Try not to leave any traces of your visit. Take only pictures, leave only your “Ruta Verde footprints”, and bring home only memories.
- Don’t be tempted to collect living or dead items or historically significant souvenirs.
- Help endangered species – do not buy products that exploit wildlife, cause habitat destruction, or come from endangered species.
Pack it in, Pack it out
- Do not dump garbage. If you bring it, take it back with you. If you find garbage others have missed or dropped by accident, pick it up.
- When hiking do not bury toilet paper, as animals will often dig it up and spread it all over. Instead pack it out. Carry out all plastic or cotton feminine hygiene products.
- Don’t use soap or shampoo; even biodegradable soap still has an impact on the environment.
Be Considerate of Other Visitors
- Preserve the solitude; respect others by traveling and camping quietly.
- Uphill hikers have the right of way.
Respect Cultural Differences
- Local customs and traditions are often different to our own; take time to learn what behaviors are acceptable and what is not.
- Ask permission before taking photographs of local people – if you do it the right way, carrying a camera is a good opportunity to make contact with the locals and make new friends.
- Taking the time to learn a few words and phrases in your host’s native tongue is always appreciated and is a great introduction to starting an interaction with locals.