Here's where the adventure started. Ellen had read about Tour Peru, a reputable company to take you from Puno to La Paz, as many, many companies here are more than dodgy - some are down-right dangerous.
We get to the bus station the day before we want to leave to buy our bus tickets. We get to the booth of Tour Peru and there is no one there. About 15 minutes later a bloke turns up at the booth in a Tur Peru shirt, we book 2 tickets for the 8.15 bus to La Paz, via Copacabana (there is no other way). We are told the ticket machine is not working and he gave us vouchers for the bus, and said be there at 7am to change our vouchers for tickets for the bus. Happily we walked away knowing we had been given vouchers for tickets before and everything worked out well.
7am the following day we arrived at the station, went to the booth to collect our tickets and waited for the bus. We were standing around and got chatting to a lady who was also on the 8.15 to La Paz and after a few moments the bloke who sold us the tickets came up to us and told us we were on the 'other 8.15 bus', we thought there must have been a large number of reservations so they were putting 2 busses on. No. this was not the case, we had been sold, by the Tur Peru bloke, tickets on a competitors bus which was leaving at the same time. We were annoyed as we had carefully researched the bus companies knowing they were dodgy, but we were also relieved as Angel was so ill that we were still getting to La Paz today. We got on the bus and found our seats. It wasn't too bad and we settled into the journey.
|What the bus travels on!|
About half way through the 3.5 hour journey the bus stops, no one tells you this is going to happen but you are asked to get off the bus while the bus is put on a ferry, and you have to queue up at a ticket booth to pay (about 20p) to catch a small motorised boat across choppy water to the other side where you wait for the bus to arrive by it's small punt and you get back on and continue your journey.
The crossing is quite an adventure.
|La Paz Traffic|
You get back on the bus and then about 2 hours later, after being stuck in an epic confusing traffic jam on the entry road to La Paz you reach the top of the hill down into La Paz. This view is amazing. You then descend into the city. Luckily Angel noticed our hotel as we passed it and when the bus stopped for the Australian tour to get off at their hotel which was just around the corner. Bonus.