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Destination Details

Oruro, Bolivia

Department of Oruro
This is a wonderful place for tourism, with a wealth of folklore as well as pre Columbian, ethnic and natural resources. It is located in the West of Bolivia, inside the central Altiplano, crossed by the Andean mountain range (East and west), as well as lakes and salt flats. It is at an average height of 3.700 meters above sea level. The department of Oruro, cradle of one of the oldest civilizations in America – The Urus, was one of the most important centres in the Audiencia de Charcas, product of the intense mining activity of the period, offering the vast fortune of its mountains to Bolivia and the world. Oruro has been recognized as Bolivia’s folklore capital due to the regal carnival acclaimed by UNESCO as “A Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.” It features important archaeological and historical centres, and awesome colonial churches of a great cultural value which deserve to be visited by tourists from all over the world.

In the city
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF ANTHROPOLOGY: The Eduardo López Anthropology Museum was funded in 1959. It features five areas with individual themes; Archaeology, Anthropology, Ethnology, Ethno-musicology and Folklore. The exhibits include an important variety of archaeological pieces, masks and suits from the Carnival, Chipaya Residences, Chullpares and native musical instruments.

SIMON I. PATIÑO MUSEUM: A residence that belonged to the renowned Tin Baron, Simon I. Patiño, built in the mannerism style. It features large exhibit halls, where they showcase furniture from the Luis XV and XVI periods, French luxury carriages, and other decorative pieces from the period.

SANCTUARY OF THE MINE SHAFT: This is located at the foot of Pie de Gallo Hill where thousands of believers travel to worship the Virgen del Socavón (Our Lady of the Mine Shafts). There is a great museum deep inside the old silver mine where one can see many elements related to mining.

SACRED ART MUSEUM OF “SAN MIGUEL DE LA RANCHERÍA”: This is a colonial temple with a beautiful altarpiece fully covered in gold. Important pieces of sacred art brought from all over Oruro are shown here, making a valuable collection in which gorgeous Mestizos-style paintings and sculptures stand out, as well as religious ornaments and clothing, furniture and printings from the period.

CONCHUPATA LIGHTHOUSE: This national monument was the place where the actual Bolivian flag was first made and raised on November 17, 1851. It is an important viewpoint from which it is possible to see a beautiful panoramic view of Oruro City. Other places of interest are: Mineral Museum (The largest in South America with over 2.000 samples), Cardozo Velasquez Workshop Museum, Rancheria Plaza, Handicraft Workshops (La Paz Street), Mining Museum (Nicolas Papic), among others.

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