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Vallegrande

Population: 6000 Altitude: 2,030m (6,660 ft) Phone code: 3

The town of Vallegrande is best known as the site where Che Guevera’s remains were discovered in 1997. Although his body has been moved to Cuba, Vallegrande still remains a focal point for those who idolize the leftist leader. However, the history of town goes back much farther than that. It was founded in 1612 under the name of Ciudad de Jesús y Montes Claros de los Caballeros del Vallegrande. It was created as a fort against the Guarani warriors who dominated what was the frontier at that time. However, many of the original inhabitants were Sephardic Jews who had converted to Catholicism. However, the Spanish Inquisition suspected them of continuing to be secret Jews. As a result of the persecution, the converted Jews fled to South America.

The town grew into a city in the 18th and 19th centuries largely because the town served as a transit point between Santa Cruz and the nearby mining areas. The town’s population grew to about 25,000, before declining to today’s population of about 6,000. Most of area is supported by agriculture—with fruits, grains and corn forming the cornerstone of the local economy. From these, you can also find great breads, liquors, and even preserves at the local market.

Today, much of the town’s tourist industry is built around its connection with Ché. People come from around the world to pay homage to the fallen leader. His remains were discovered on the airstrip in the town. He was apparently buried there after being executed in the nearby town of La Higuera thirty earlier. It is hard to escape the image of Che in Vallegrande. Most shops sell posters, shirt, key chains and other souvenirs with him images. Even in most restaurants and hotels, images of “Saint Ernesto”, as he is called by some of the locals, can be found watching over you.

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Other places nearby Vallegrande: Camiri, The Bolivian Pantanal, San Javier, Roboré, Santiago de Chiquitos and Chochís, Samaipata, Amboro National Park, Yacuiba, La Higuera, San Ignacio De Velasco and Parque Nacional Kaa-lya del Gran Chaco.




Top Places in Vallegrande

La Higuera

Forty-five kilometers (28 mi) south of Vallegrande is the town of La Higuera where Che Guevara spent his last violent days before his execution on October 9, 1967. Ever since the Che Guevara Trail ...
City
La Higuera, Vallegrande, Bolivia

Things to do in Vallegrande

Museo Municipal Ruta del Che Guevara

Housed in the Casa de la Cultura, this is Vallegrande\'s stab at profiting from the phenomenon of Che. The modest museum contains vestiges of the Argentine revolutionary and his guerilla group, ...
Museum
Vallegrande, Bolivia

Museo ArqueolĂłgico Regional de Vallegrande

The Regional Archaeology Museum is another of the attractions located within the Casa de la Cultura and has a broad collection of ceramics, funereal objects, textiles, wood and metalwork from in and ...
Museum
Vallegrande, Bolivia
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