Tarija: A Hidden Gem in Bolivia
Tarija is a charming city located in southern Bolivia, known for its vineyards, colonial architecture, and delicious cuisine. It offers visitors a unique experience, with a mix of indigenous and European culture that is hard to find in any other city in South America. Here are ten places you must visit when in Tarija, along with five places to avoid.
Places to Visit
Casa Dorada is a historic mansion that has been reconstructed into a museum, showcasing the lives of the wealthy families of Tarija during the colonial era. Visitors can see the elegant furniture, artwork, and architectural details that have been preserved over the centuries.
La Ruta del Vino
Tarija is well known for its wine production, and La Ruta del Vino takes you through the picturesque vineyards of Valle de la Concepción. Along the way, you can learn about the winemaking process and taste some of the best wines in Bolivia.
Casa de la Cultura
The Casa de la Cultura is a cultural center that hosts exhibitions and events that showcase the best of Tarija’s art, music, and dance. It is a great place to immerse yourself in the local culture and learn more about the city’s history.
Plaza Luis de Fuentes
Plaza Luis de Fuentes is the main square in Tarija, surrounded by colonial buildings and lined with palm trees. This is the heart of the city, and a great place to sit and people watch, while enjoying some of the local street food or ice cream.
Cerro San Juan
Cerro San Juan is a hill just outside of the city, offering panoramic views of Tarija and the surrounding valleys. Visitors can hike or take the cable car to the top, and enjoy the fresh air and stunning scenery.
Casa Museo Padilla
This museum is located inside the birthplace of Eustaquio Padilla, a hero of Tarija’s independence movement. The museum showcases his life, along with other important events in Tarija’s history. The building itself is also worth exploring, as it is one of the oldest houses in the city.
Parque de las Flores
The Parque de las Flores is a botanical garden featuring over 2,000 species of plants, including orchids, succulents, and medicinal plants. It is a great place to relax and enjoy some of the natural beauty of Tarija.
Pueblo de Luracatao
Luracatao is a small village near Tarija, known for its traditional architecture and handicrafts. Visitors can see the weaving process and purchase locally made textiles, pottery, and other souvenirs.
Aranjuez is one of the oldest wineries in Tarija, producing high-quality wines for over 100 years. Visitors can take a tour of the vineyard and winery, learn about the winemaking process, and of course, taste some of their award-winning wines.
San Roque Market
The San Roque Market is a bustling marketplace with vendors selling everything from fresh produce to handmade crafts. This is a great place to experience Tarija’s vibrant culture and pick up some unique souvenirs.
Places to Avoid
Puerta del Diablo
Puerta del Diablo is a natural rock formation that is said to resemble the devil’s mouth. While the site is popular with tourists, it can be dangerous to visit, as the rocks are unstable and there have been fatalities in the past.
El Castillo Azul
This castle-like building may look impressive from the outside, but the inside has been poorly maintained and is in disrepair. It is not worth the time or money to visit.
Parque de la Aventura
The Parque de la Aventura is an amusement park with rides and attractions that are often poorly maintained and unsafe. It is best to avoid this park and find other, safer activities to enjoy in Tarija.
Terminal de Buses
The bus terminal in Tarija can be chaotic and unsafe, with many people and outdated facilities. If possible, it is best to arrange transportation through your hotel or a reputable tour company.
Barrio El Molino
This neighborhood is known to have high levels of crime and is best avoided, especially at night. It is not a tourist-friendly area and offers little of interest to visitors.
Overview of Tarija
|Currency||Bolivian Boliviano (BOB)|
|Average Temperature by Season||Summer (December-February): 20°C-28°C
Fall (March-May): 12°C-25°C
Winter (June-August): 8°C-22°C
Spring (September-November): 12°C-27°C
|Best Time to Visit||The best time to visit Tarija is during the fall or spring, when the weather is mild and there are fewer crowds. Avoid visiting during the summer, as it can be very hot and crowded.|
|City Official URL||http://www.tarija.bo/|