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21 Day Highlander 2 Guided Motorcycle Tour in Bolivia

Samaipata, Florida Province, Santa Cruz Department, Bolivia

Amazing Motorcycle Tour Bolivia

This tour is specially designed for those who want to see most of Bolivia's highlights and ride a lot of off-road, but nothing too difficult for the average motorcyclist. You will pass the Ruta del Che (Che Guevara Trail) heading to an indigenous market, the capital city, the oldest operating silver mine, salt flats, lakes, mountains, and more. This is a tour filled with extremes, on a selection of the best motorcycle roads available!

Key information

  • Terrain: 40% off-road
  • Bike: rental bike (Suzuki DR650SE)
  • Mileage: 2,970 kilometers / 1,846 miles
  • Daily rides: 78 - 320 kilometers / 48 - 199 miles
  • Riding gear: not included: helmet, boots, pants, jacket, and gloves
  • Meals: all meals

Highlights

  • Starts and ends in Samaipata
  • Tour the Lake Titicaca area, the world's highest navigable lake
  • Ride to the archeological Inca site of “El Fuerte”, a UNESCO World Heritage
  • Ride to Salar de Uyuni, the enchanting largest salt lake of the world
  • Trace back some of the revolutionary hero, Che Guevara's paths
  • Services of a 4x4 assistance vehicle with a motorcycle trailer
  • 20 nights accommodation
  • Airport transfers

Skill level

  • Intermediate

Styles


17 riding days in English
The organizer also speaks: French, German
Group size: 2-8 participants
Airport transfer included: Viru Viru International Airport
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Accommodation

During this tour, you will stay in various hotels along the route. Most will be nice and comfortable, some will be less nice. Bolivia Motorcycle Adventures always tries to maintain a standard of clean rooms with private bathrooms that have hot showers, but please understand that this is Bolivia and sometimes there just is no good option.

Program

General description

Starting with the “Ruta del Ché”. you make your way to the indigenous market of Tarabuco, following to the colonial Sucre, the capital of Bolivia. Continuing, you ascent to Potosí, the highest city in the world and the oldest operating silver mines in the world. This is followed by the “Salar de Uyuni”, the largest salt-flats in the world, the train graveyard, the Dakar monument, and Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world.

You try to ascent the Chacaltaya Mountain at 5,270-meter altitude by bike. Including the most dangerous road in the world, the infamous “Death Road”, the coca leafs plantations, you reach the highest Christo statue in the world. Photographer get prepared for a 100 years time travel in Totora. Highest riding peak will be 5,200 meters resp. 4,650 meters.

Daily itinerary

Day 1: Airport pickup at Viru-Viru, Santa Cruz

  • Altitude: 400 meters

You will be picked up at the airport of Santa Cruz, Bolivia from where you will drive to the small town of Samaipata (120 kilometers, three hours). There, you will check into a comfortable hotel and spend the rest of the day to relax and discover. If your flight arrives late, you need to spend the night in Santa Cruz. In that case, the following day is considered as day one.

Day 2: Samaipata

  • Altitude: 1,650 meters

You will with the briefing where you learn more about safety riding, the route, the local traffic rules, and about each other. To get used to your bike, you will go for a ride to the archeological site of “El Fuerte”. Classified World Heritage by UNESCO, it is an old Inca town build around the, much older, largest stone sculpture in the Americas. For some people, it is an ancient Alien landing field!

Day 3. Samaipata - La Higuera (175 kilometers / 109 miles)

  • Altitude: 1,900 meters
  • Terrain: 50% off-road

Leaving early in the morning, you will stop in Vallegrande to visit the hospital's laundry, where revolutionary hero Ernesto Ché Guevara´s lifeless body was presented in 1967 to the world.

After lunch, you continue your ride towards the tiny mountain village of La Higuera, the place where Ché was captured and executed. On the road, you observe condors, the world biggest bird.

After your first special drive, you arrive at the end of the afternoon in La Higuera. In the evening at the campfire in the courtyard of your hotel, you will listen to Don Juan’s comments from the time of the guerrilla war.

Day 4: La Higuera - Villa Serrano (120 kilometers / 75 miles)

  • Altitude: 2,100 meters
  • Terrain: 100% off-road

After visiting the ancient school building where Ché Guevara was executed and the related sites, you leave towards Villa Serrano. On the suspension bridge over the Rio Grande, you will have a picnic lunch and if the conditions are good (mostly the water level) you can also go for a swim.

You will arrive in Villa Serrano in the afternoon, Bolivia’s capital of the charango. It is a kind of a small, double five-string guitar, very difficult to play.

Day 5: Villa Serrano - Sucre (190 kilometers / 119 miles)

  • Altitude: 2,700 meters
  • Terrain: 30% off-road

You leave Villa Serrano early in the morning so you can visit the Tarabuco Sunday market. This is the only place in Bolivia where you can take photos of traditionally dressed indigenous people without them turning away.

After lunch, you continue to Sucre, the capital of Bolivia. The rest of the afternoon and evening is for exploring this beautiful colonial city. The entire white painted city center is classified World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Day 6: Sucre - Potosí (155 kilometers / 97 miles)

  • Altitude: 4,100 meters
  • Terrain: 0% off-road

You leave Sucre after breakfast. On smooth tarmac, you start to climb towards the altiplano (high planes) until you reach to a strange bridge, which you will intent to ride. The mining city of Potosí is with 4,100-meter altitude, the highest city in the world and also classified World Heritage by UNESCO. During the ascent, the guides will give you instructions about altitude sickness.

In the afternoon, you will visit the miner’s market where you can buy anything, ranging from coca leaves to dynamite. Here, you will do some interesting shopping to have some “boys fun” later.

Then, you will continue to the mines where you will be “geared up” and descent into the belly of “Pacha Mama” (mother earth) to visit the 500-year old, still operating silver mines. It is not suitable for those who do not like small spaces.

Day 7: Potosí - Uyuni (205 kilometers / 128 miles)

  • Altitude: 3,700 meters
  • Terrain: 5% off-road

Crossing incredible canyon scenery, passing tiny villages, watching for vicuñas (family of camelids), emus (ostrich family bird), and thousands of lamas, you arrive at the small mining village of Pulacayo. Here, you will walk a little around the ancient railway station, the mine entrance and you climb the train wagon with which the American outlaws Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid arrived in Bolivia.

Next break is Uyuni, where you visit the train graveyard, a fantastic collection of discarded railway material dating back to the 19th century. This includes at least a dozen steam locomotives, perfect photo shooting

Day 8: Salar de Uyuni day trip (195 kilometers / 122 miles)

  • Terrain: 90% salt-road

The Salar de Uyuni is a dried up salt lake, the size of a small country (11,000 square kilometers). Since the largest salt lake of the world has no references, whatsoever, and because there are only two colors in the world (blue sky and white salt), there is no perspective. Your brain will have a meltdown and you can take the weirdest photos (crazy photos with crazy bikers).

On your way, you will visit the cactus island “Inca Huasi”, the salt market, the flags monument, the salt hotel, and the Dakar monument.

Day 9: Salar de Uyuni - Oruro (320 kilometers / 199 miles)

  • Altitude: 3,700 meters
  • Terrain: 0% off-road

In the morning, you will leave Uyuni behind you. Passing scenic altiplano desert landscapes and several small villages, you make your way to Oruro, famous for its markets and grill restaurants. So “grill” will be your treat in the evening.

But before, you will observe a strange phenomenon. More should not be divulged here!

Day 10: Oruro - Copacabana on Lake Titicaca (360 kilometers / 224 miles)

  • Altitude: 3,800 meters
  • Terrain: 20% off-road

To avoid the chaotic traffic in the city of El Alto, you will leave Oruro early in the morning by the new built motorway. Conditional to your arrival time nearby El Alto, you will evaluate to take a short cut towards Lake Titicaca. Crossing the crystal blue waters to the peninsula of famous Copacabana on a pontoon, you will enjoy views of snow-capped mountains over the clear blue lake. Your hotel has a marvelous view of the lake. Guess what is going on for dinner?

Day 11: Day trip to the Island of the Sun and the Island of the Moon

Exchanging your bikes for a boat, you will visit two legendary islands from the Inca times. On Island of the Sun, you make a short hike with fantastic views of the snow-covered mountains that border Lake Titicaca. On Island of the Moon, you will visit the ruins of moon virgin’s temple.

Day 12: Lake Titicaca - La Paz (145 kilometers / 91 miles)

  • Altitude: 3,600 meters
  • Terrain: 0% off-road

In the morning, you will leave Lake Titicaca behind, stop at the La Paz view point, and arrive in La Paz, the de facto capital of Bolivia halfway the afternoon. It is possible to visit the witches market where you could buy anything ranging from magic potions and amulets to mummified llama embryos. In the evening, you can witness the changing of the guards at the presidential palace.

Day 13: Rest day in La Paz

Three proposed activities on the group’s decision (influenced by weather and road conditions):

  • Visit the “Valle de la Luna”, a surreal valley filled with chaotic mud sculptures from rains and floods
  • Ride the 5,270-meter high Chacaltaya Mountain. There was a ski lodge and a alpinist acclimatization base, the former highest sky station in the world
  • Round trip over La Paz and El Alto by funicular. Actually, there are seven lines in service, unique in the world, made by Doppelmayr, Austria

Day 14: La Paz - The Death Road - Coroico (85 kilometers / 53 miles)

  • Altitude: 4,650 to 1,750 meters
  • Terrain: 80% off-road

From La Paz, you ride to Coroico on what was once officially the most dangerous road in the world. Plummeting down into the tropical Yungas region, the views are magnificent and if you keep your speed down, you have a very good chance to arrive safely in Coroico. For the really brave, you can finish today’s ride with a 500-meter zipline adventure, sitting or in spider position. From here, it only takes 45 minutes' ride to the hotel's pool.

Day 15: Coroico - Chulumani (78 kilometers / 49 miles)

  • Altitude: 1,700 meters
  • Terrain: 100% off-road

You leave Coroico and follow narrow unpaved mountain roads through the Yungas, well known for its coca leafs plantations. Passing small picturesque mountain villages and on the end, a very scenic real death road, you arrive in Chulumani around noon. Time to soak in the swimming pool, explore this bustling agronomic trade center of the Yungas, or just to relax.

Day 16: Chulumani - Quime (195 kilometers / 122 miles)

  • Altitude: 3,030 meters
  • Terrain: 100% off-road

Again, today is an entire day of narrow, unpaved roads following deep ravines, crossing rivers, and passing tiny settlements. Late in the afternoon, the last hour before arriving, you ride on the edge of a small curvy gorge road with a splendid view. Quime is a small cradled mining town in between massive mountains. Your dinner and hotel are basic and very Bolivian.

Day 17: Quime - Cochabamba (315 kilometers / 196 miles)

  • Altitude: 2,500 meters
  • Terrain: 10% off-road

After a Bolivian breakfast, you leave Quime. At a traditional sanctuary, you sacrifice cigarettes, alcohol, and of course coca leaves to the patron saint of the place.

On curvy roads with amazing views, you climb to 4,400-meter altitude, before you descent to the valley of Cochabamba, surrounded by huge mountains.

After you have mastered the traffic, you rush straight to the plaza, from where you cuddled the bustle. At one plaza corner is the best known coffee “cortado” café, and for dinner, you will enjoy the best known “Pique Macho”, a traditional dish.

Day 18: Cochabamba - Totora (145 kilometers / 91 miles)

  • Altitude: 2,800 meters
  • Terrain: 0% off-road

In the morning, you will visit the largest “Christo” sculpture of South America. With almost 40 meters of height, it is a bit higher than the famous “Christo de Rio de Janeiro”.

After this, you will leave the big city to have a fresh fish lunch and passing beautiful valleys. You make your way to Totora, a small colonial town in the mountains, where time stands still since 100 years, a paradise for photographers.

Day 19: Totora - Samaipata (265 kilometers / 165 miles)

  • Altitude: 1,650 meters
  • Terrain: 40% off-road

This last day starts with an 80-kilometer (roman!) stone road, feel like Ben Hur! Passing the valley of Rio Mizque, the scenery becomes one of rough and colorful mountains and the road becomes challenging.

In the afternoon, you arrive back in Samaipata, on a marvelous motorcycle road though the mountains. You leave your bikes behind and hurry to jump into the hotel's pool.

Day 20: Samaipata - Santa Cruz

Late in the morning, you will set off for Santa Cruz where you can relax, hanging around the plaza, and do some souvenir shopping. In the evening, you will have a farewell dinner.

Day 21: Departure

Always a sad moment when one say goodbye. But who knows? You would not be the first to come back for more.

Bolivia Motorcycle Adventures' bikes

Kawasaki KLR 650/685

  • A reliable “thumper”
  • One cylinder 650/685cc, no surprises travel bike
  • The large fuel tank gives it a comfortable range and the seating position is relaxed
  • Suitable for a passenger

Honda XR 650 L

The “little” sister of the XRR. Not as fast, not as light, but with an electric starter and more comfortable suspension and seat.

Honda XR 650 R

This monster would do great in the Dakar rally. With more than 60 HP and less than 140 kilograms, it is like sitting on top of a crate of dynamite (only kickstarter).

Suzuki DR 650 SE

  • The bike for shorter people or woman
  • Easy to handle
  • Steers like a razorblade

Riders are participants that ride a Bolivia Motorcycle Adventures motorcycle (the standard). Passengers are participants that accompany the riders, either as a pillion, in the support vehicle or with their own bike. Bolivia Motorcycle Adventures will try to give you the bike you like, but if everybody chooses the same bike, they will have to decide who gets which bike. For this, they need to know your gender, experience with motorcycling, your height, and weight and age.

4x4 assistance vehicle

Each tour is accompanied by a 4x4 assistance vehicle with a motorcycle trailer and for some tours also with a spare bike: luggage, medical material, technical assistance but also offers riders the opportunity to rest during the tour. Riders drive only with a small daypack, containing camera, bike gear, snack, drinks, personal belongings, etc.

Skill level(s) required for this tour: intermediate

Intermediate:

  • can ride for 3-4 hours
  • average riding experience
  • little assistance required
  • comfortable with extreme curves and leans
  • average experience with unsurfaced roads
  • steep ascents and descents

Location

This tour will take you to most of Bolivia's highlights through off-road trails with varying intensities. You will visit among others: Tarabuco, Sucre, Potosí, Salar de Uyuni, Lake Titicaca, Chacaltaya Mountain, Totora, and more.

Food

During this tour, you will be served daily meals according to the itinerary. All meals are included, and generally, it will be nice and tasty, but again, this is Bolivia and sometimes there just is no good restaurant in the area.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • Motorbike rent
  • Entrances
  • All meals
  • 20 nights accommodation
  • Fuel
  • A 4x4 assistance vehicle with a motorcycle trailer
  • Services of a main guide who speaks five languages
  • Off-road and safe driving training before each tour
  • Transfer from and to Viru Viru International Airport (VVI)

What's not included

  • Airfare
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Personal items
  • Riding gear

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by airplane

Book your flight to arrive at Viru Viru International Airport (VVI). Transfer from and to the airport is included. The organizer will pick you up from the airport.

Airport: Viru Viru International Airport Airport transfer included: Viru Viru International Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 10% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 28 days before arrival.
21 days / 20 nights
from --
Minimum group size

This trip requires a minimum of 2 participants

Availability

Start: Wednesday September 1, 2021
End: Tuesday September 21, 2021

Availability

You may also pick your own tour and date as a custom tour with your group. This tour always starts on Wednesday.

Select your package:

For this organizer you can guarantee your booking through BookMotorcycleTours.com. All major credit cards supported.

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