The Bolivian Altiplano

Three days in a desert thousands of meters above sea level.

Day One

-cross from Chile into Bolivia
-Laguna Verde and Laguna Blanca
-Sol de Mañana geyser field
-Termas de Polques hot springs
-Laguna Colorada
-bitterly cold night

Day Two

-Árbol de Piedra
-Laguna Hedionda
-llama meat for dinner

Day Three

-Salar de Uyuni
-Train graveyard

A postcard from the Museo de Instrumentos Musicales de Bolivia

20120531-102547.jpgThe Museo de Instrumentos Musicales de Bolivia features armadillo and tortoise shell charangos (a 10-stringed Andean instrument similar to a small guitar) and anthropomorphic ocarinas. There are completely original inventions, like the star shaped five-neck charango. Scores of tubular instruments I’ve never before seen share space with percussive anklets made from pigs nails. There are instruments you can play, or at least try to, perhaps to the annoyance of the museum staff.

While a myriad of musical instruments are on display, the charango is the star of the museum. You’ll find Jesus and the Mona Lisa holding the iconic instrument in the art gallery. Founded by charanguista Ernesto Cavour, the museum also exhibits posters and record covers of popular Bolivian musicians including himself.

Located on Jaen 711, Zona Norte, La Paz. Entrance is 5 bolivianos.