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Climate of Bolivia

As is the case with the rest of the countries in South America, the climate in Bolivia is quite varied as you go from region to region. The eastern lowlands (Chaco) are part of the Amazon jungle system, and feature your typical rain forest climate: it’s hot, muggy, humid and wet.

Most of the rest of Bolivia is quite high up: La Paz, built over a series of hills, valleys, ravines and plateaus, ranges between 3,000 – 4,000 meters (about 12,000 feet) above sea level and the famous Lake Titicaca is at a lung-punishing 3,821 meters. At these altitudes, the air is thin and the weather can be quite chilly: you’ll need a warm jacket and perhaps a hat and some gloves, especially if you plan to spend much time outdoors. The Andes Mountains that surround La Paz and form the rest of the highlands are even colder: in the high peaks there is often snow and ice.

In between the jungle lowlands and the frigid Lake Titicaca and La Paz is a wide range of different climates and ecosystems. Because it has such a wide range of habitats, Bolivia is considered very biologically diverse.

The rainy season in Bolivia is from December to March, and it is suggested to visit during the rest of the year if at all possible.

In terms of packing for Bolivia, let your itinerary be your guide. If you won’t be going to the jungle or climbing in the Andes, you’ll want warm clothing which you can put on in layers. If you’re going to the jungle, you’ll want lightweight, long-sleeved shirts and pants, preferably made of a material that dries quickly and is easy to clean. If you’re hiking in the high Andes, you’ll want some high-quality cold-weather gear: the mountains are rugged, cold and unforgiving. 

Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Bolivia: Getting to and away, Bolivian Dress, When to Go, Etiquette in Bolivia, Seniors , Traveling with Children in Bolivia, Lodging, Huaca Huañusca, Safety and Accommodation Overview.

By Christopher Minster
I am a writer and editor at V!VA Travel guides here in Quito, where I specialize in adding quality content to the site and also in spooky things like...
01 Mar 2007

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