Monday, July 14, 2008

Tupiza

Monday 30th June to Wednesday 2nd July

I like Tupiza! It´s got a really nice feel to it, despite it becoming "discovered" and slowly starting to be part of the gringo trail. The people are sooo friendly... The market is full of life and bustle. Forget the sterilised supermarket experience of Argentina, here it´s rough and ready and you need to search amongst the over stuffed stalls for what you need.

This is "bike alley" full to bursting with spares. Cyclista heaven....



Cyclista heaven 2 is the comedor in the market. Sanitary standards are not exactly 5 star - stray dogs wander in and out and the rafters are alive with bird calls... but it´s a place to rub shoulders with the locals. And chicken, rice, potatoes, salad and coffee costs me 80 pence...



The central plaza is replete with statuary and an old colonial style cathedral hinting at ancient wealth...



A water park! A surprise in this dusty land. Now dry and unused - waiting for the rainy season?



A short breathless trek takes you past the 12 stages of the cross to Cerro Corazon de Jesus (Heart of Jesus) at 3100m where the sunset views across the town are stunning...



The giant statue dominating the towns sky line...



We learn the road out of Tupiza is barren pampa and decide test out the train system instead. Bikes loaded and ready to be transported to the next destination - Uyuni...



I decide to explore and get some photos....



Until the guard persuades me otherwise. His no nonsense stance, gun and handcuffs are mighty persuasive...



Next stop Uyuni and the salt flats....

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