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23 Fascinating Bolivia Facts You Didn’t Know

Bolivia Facts

Located in the heart of South America, Bolivia has some of the greatest geographical records, such as having the world’s highest capital. The country is infamous for its salt flats and beautiful landscapes.

Let’s get to learn more about Bolivia’s history, geography, people, culture, and more.

Here Are the Most Fascinating Bolivia Facts You Didn’t Know About

1. Bolivia Shares Its Border with Many South American Countries

Since Bolivia is in the Southwest region of Brazil, it shares its borders with Chile, Peru, Argentina, Paraguay, and Brazil, with the Brazil border being the longest one.

2. Bolivia’s Size

Bolivia is approximately the same size as Ethiopia, and twice the size of Spain. And when compared to Montana in the U.S., Bolivia is about three times its size.

3. Flight to Bolivia’s Capital

When flying to Bolivia’s capital, La Paz, it takes roughly 12 and a half hours from the city of New York and about 17 hours from London.

4. It’s a Landlocked Nation

Being a landlocked nation, none of Bolivia’s borders touch any ocean. All of its borders touch land.

5. Bolivia Is a Country with 2 Capital Cities

Bolivia is a unique nation with 2 capital cities, La Paz and Sucre. La Paz is known for being the highest capital, at a height of 11,975 ft.

La Paz is the largest city of Bolivia which is overlooked by the beautiful Andes mountains. It has a lot of attractions, including Murillo Square and the Old Town. There is also the world’s highest urban cable car in La Paz that connects the city with El Alto. La Paz’s Witches’ Market is also a famous tourist spot.

On the other hand, Sucre is a scenic historic city where Bolivia gained independence from Spain. Sucre has a lot of beautiful churches. The Templo de San Felipe Neri is a historical landmark that was built in 1800.

6. Bolivia’s Nevado Sajama Is an Inactive Volcano

Bolivia’s highest peak, Nevado Sajama is about 21,463 ft. high and is an inactive volcano.

7. Bolivia Has the Highest Lake in the World

Bolivia’s largest lake, Lake Titicaca, is also the highest lake of the world. It lies at a height of 12,483 ft. and is shared by both Peru and Bolivia. Bolivia often has disputes with Peru over the access to this lake.

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8. Bolivia Also Has the World’s Highest Salt Flat

Bolivia also has the highest salt flat in the world. Salar de Uyuni lies at a height of 11,995 ft.

9. Bolivia Has Diverse Landscapes

From icy and rough mountainous areas to dense rainforests of Amazon, volcanoes, lakes, and highlands, Bolivia has a rich and diverse landscape. So naturally, the climate of Bolivia is also quite different. The western regions of Bolivia are colder as they are located at a higher altitude like the Andes mountains, with a mean elevation of 3,910 ft. Whereas the eastern regions of Bolivia are warmer, with a very hot climate in the flatlands and humidity in the areas that have rainforests.

10. Cities of Bolivia

The largest cities of Bolivia include Santa Cruz de la Sierra, La Paz, and Cochabamba, with a population of 1.8m, 1.8m, and 1.4m people, respectively. Santa Cruz is the most crucial city and a business hub in the nation. It is the second biggest city in Bolivia with a lot of tourist attractions, including art galleries, churches, and museums. It is commonly referred to as the agricultural and economic powerhouse of the country.

11. Bolivia Is Famous for its Active Volcanoes

The Andes Mountains of Bolivia that border with Chile, have several active volcanoes today. The last volcano that erupted in Bolivia was the Irruputuncu volcano, which erupted in 1995.

12. Bolivia’s Sun Island

The Sun Island, or Isla del Sol, is the largest and most beautiful island located in Lake Titicaca with scenic views, amazing hiking trails, and the Inca ruins.

13. Bolivia’s National Park

Bolivia has a diverse national park, called Amboró National Park. It is located in the middle of Bolivia, in the western part of Santa Cruz and is popular for its diverse species of animals and plants. You can find rare mammals, jaguars, and giant anteaters in this park. There are also more than 800 species of birds in this National Park, which is even more than the bird species that are found in the country of Canada.

14. Bolivia Also Has the Second Largest High Plateau in the World

Bolivia is a land with a lot of geographical records. The Altiplano in Bolivia is the second largest and highest plateau all over the world, second to Tibet. This plateau region is located in the Andes highlands and is landlocked with Latin American countries, including Argentina, Chile, and Peru. However, the Altiplano in Bolivia is the most extensive region that features volcanoes. You can also find beautiful rock formations in this region that were shaped by the wind.

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15. A Majority of the People Live in the Urban Regions

About 70% of the Bolivians live in urban parts of the country. Bolivia has the largest population of indigenous people in South America, before Peru and Guatemala. About 36 native languages are spoken in Bolivia. However, the most common and official languages are Spanish, Quechua, Guarani, and Aymara.

16. Bolivia Has the Most Unjust Distribution of Resources in South America

Unfortunately, the economic inequality in Bolivia is the highest of all South American countries. More than half of the Bolivians are extremely poor. Whereas a few Bolivians are very rich. The educational standard in the poor areas is extremely low.

17. All Bolivians Have to Serve in Military

It is compulsory for all Bolivians to join the military service. Be it boys or girls, they have to serve in the army for a year to train, when they get 18 years old. However, some males join the military when they turn 14.

18. Soccer Is the Most Played Sport in Bolivia

The most played sport in Bolivia is soccer, followed by tennis, horse riding, swimming, and cycling.

19. Bolivia’s National Animals

Bolivia’s national animals are the llama and the Andean Condor. Llamas can reach up to 5.8 ft. tall and weigh 440 lbs. They grow up to twenty years old and are often mistaken for Alpacas. However, a llama is much heavier and bigger than an alpaca. It has a straight back with elongated curved ears that look like a banana. Llamas are usually used as protecting animals for carrying loads and for packing.

20. Bolivia Is Home to the Rarest Species of Flamingos

In addition to being home to pumas, jaguars, capybaras, birds, and chinchillas, Bolivia is also home to the most rare species of flamingo globally, called the Andean flamingos.

The Andean flamingos are found in the Andes mountains of Bolivia.

21. Bolivia Celebrates the Famous Festival of Carnaval de Oruro

Bolivia celebrates the famous Carnaval de Oruro, which is originally an indigenous festival originating from the 18th. Century.

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However, over the years, this festival has evolved and now incorporates many Catholic rituals performed to the Virgin of Candelaria.

During this interesting festival, people wake up the sleeping residents to get them into party mode and dance! There are beautiful costumes, folk dances, lively music, and hours of partying.

22. Bolivia Has a Prison Where the Prisoners Get to Live with Their Families

Bolivia has a unique prison called San Pedro prison, which is also a popular tourist attraction.

Unlike any other prison in the world, the San Pedro prison allows prisoners to live with their families, work, and earn money. They can also rent or buy their accommodation in the prison. This prison has a great sense of community.

23. Bolivia Is Home to One of the Largest Butterfly Sanctuaries

Bolivia has one of the biggest butterfly sanctuaries in the world, spanning over 24 hectares and open to everyone, 365 days a year. You can find more than 1,000 species of butterfly in this sanctuary.

Top 10 AMAZING Facts about BOLIVIA

Watch this video to see the exotic lands of South America for a stop off in Bolivia to see exactly why over one million people visit these exotic lands every year! So, fry up your salchipapa and grab a glass of mocochinchi as we explore this multi-ethnic and diversified country with these ten amazing facts about Bolivia!


We hope these Bolivia facts taught you a lot about this rich and diverse country with beautiful landscapes.

Our favorite fact about Bolivia definitely has to be the unique prison system in its San Pedro prison where inmates get to live with their families. It is quite an extraordinary concept that is only practiced in Bolivia and nowhere else in the world.

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