Santa Cruz de la Sierra
When travelling to Bolivia, in order to avoid altitude sickness, in my opinion, a gradual adaptation to the altitude is advisable, visiting Santa Cruz is the best city to arrive at first as it is only 1,365 feet above sea level. Then moving to the valley of Cochabamba (where my mother lives) located at a height of 8,392 feet.
Santa Cruz has a tropical savanna climate. The Bolivia-Brazil boundary line crosses a variety of terrains, going from large urban areas, deserts and forests, it begins at the Pantanal and ends in the Amazon rainforest. The agricultural richness of the region allows Santa Cruz to enjoy an enormous variety of flavours and ingredients. Native spices urucum and fruits such as achachairu, guapuru and guabira are unique to the region.
"Holy Cross of the Mountain Range"
The wonderful Tajibos Hotel where I always stay for a few days to acclimatise before my onward journey to Cochabamba (my mother's home town) then on to the exhilarating effect of La Paz at nearly 14,000 feet.
The founder of the wonderful Los Tajibos Hotel, my great uncle Jorge Calvo Galindo
The resident peacocks who strut around the grounds of the hotel freely
and with my lovely mum