Things to do in Samaipata, Bolivia
Samaipata is a little oasis in Bolivia. The town is about a 3-hour share trufi ride away from Santa Cruz. (Longer if, say, there’s a “road block” protest. Then you might have to take a taxi to the start of the protest, walk 2 kilometers through cut down trees, piled up rocks, and buses, then catch a share trufi from there. Just sayin…)
I honestly expected to have a quiet few days there, do little but relax in the the $20 a night b&b I splurged on, enjoy the view, enjoy having my own room for once. But I met an Italian man on my ride there and, in a rare moment lately of being social, I joined him for lunch when we got there. And then we did everything there was to do in Samaipata. As things go.
Everywhere in the town had such terrible wifi anyways (it is middle-of nowhere Bolivia after all) so my “relaxing days” would probably have been more like “constantly refreshing my browser and cursing.” As things go.
If you find yourself in Bolivia, as you should some day, find your way to Samaipata. It’s a nice little relaxing place. Even if you do a million things and can’t work the wifi.
In Samaipata you can…
Check out the main square.
It isn’t a town in Latin America without a main square. See also: obligatory church.
Walk around the rest of town.
It won’t take you too long.
Visit El Fuerte.
A pre-Columbian archaeological religious site and UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s a taxi ride away from town and a 2-hour or so walk back. If you’re silly enough to decide to walk back…
Check out Refugio Zoologico.
A short walk from town you can see this zoo, which is actually a refuge for rescued animals.
Dip your toes in Cascadas de Cuevas.
A series of three waterfalls.
Take a day tour of helechos gigantes in Parque Nacional Amboro.
The national park is one of the biggest draws in the area. This day trip takes a nice easy (mostly) hike amongst the tall trees. There are other tours and longer tours. But there isn’t much demand, so it may be hard to find if you’re by yourself.
Stay at La Posada del Sol.
Because it’s just lovely. And the only place listed in Lonely Planet. And eat there. Because the food is too good. Even if the wifi sucks. (But, again, Bolivia.)