The City of Eternal Spring
Cochabamba is the fourth largest city in Bolivia and rests at 2,558 meters above sea level. It is the capital of the department Cochabamba and located exactly in the heart of Bolivia. Its population of roughly 600,000 people constantly increases, generating a visible dynamism that keeps this city full of activity and life.
Cochabamba is located in a fruitful valley surrounded by a patchwork landscape of mountains, and farm fields that produce abundant crops of maiz (corn), wheat, barley, and citrus fruits. In the center of the majestic mountain range that borders the city to the northwest lies the imposing Cerro Tunari, the highest peak in the region at 5,035 meters. In the opposite direction, to the northeast of the city, rises the Cristo de la Concordia – the monumental Christ statue on top of the San Pedro hill that distinguishes Cochabamba.
From the tourist’s point of view Cochabamba doesn’t compare with Sucre or Potosí. However, thanks to its spring-like climate and lower altitude, it constitutes a marvelous place to visit. One can enjoy a wide range of activities in the city, from strolling through its pleasant parks, admiring colonial edifices, partaking in its array of fairs, getting lost in the small alleys of one of the countries biggest open-air markets "La Cancha", and of course, hitting its well-known night life.
“In Cochabamba, the party gets underway at night. When the sun slips down and the city lights brighten, the people go out to ‘recharge the batteries’ after a full and productive week of work or studies. The night heats up in one of the many cafes and then, once groups of friends gather together, they dance the night away to the rhythm of great music in the clubs.”
Top Five places to visit in the city
1) Latin Americas highest Christ statue on Cerro San Pedro: El Cristo de la Concordia
2) Bolivia´s biggest open air street market: La Cancha
3) The palace of once the world´s richest man: Tin Baron Simon I. Patiños "Palacio Portales"
4) Bolivia´s best bar´s and club scene around Calle España
5) Cochabamba´s finest religious building: Convento Santa Teresa
Top Five places to visit in the surroundings
1) Seeing the condor when climbing up Central Bolivia highest peak - the Cerro Tunari (5035 mts.)
2) Dinosaur tracks, caves, waterfall, deep canyons, rock paintings and breathtaking landscape in the Torotoro National Park
3) The nearest thing Bolivia has to Peru´s Machu Picchu: Incallajta, a ruined fortress with the largest roofed Inca building in the Americas.
4) White water rafting, lush jungle, indigenous culture and coca growing in the Chapare region
5) The laid back atmosphere of its colonial streets in the lovely little town of Totora
Best time to visit
Cochabamba can be visited the year around. It is the city with the most comfortable climate in Bolivia, with warm, dry, and sunny days and cooler nights. Winter, from June till September, is the dry seasons, which means clear skies and cold nights. Summer, from December till March, is the rainy season, with most rainy days in January and February, and highest temperatures on sunny days. During the rainy season the Andean hills turn into a lush green, and all the city starts to be in flower. Insider Tip: Perfect time to visit is from March to May, when rainy season is over, surrounding hills are still green and night temperatures are still comfortable.