Bolivia - Food and Drink
The varied landscapes of Bolivia greatly affect its cuisine and local dishes change depending on the region whether it be the highlands, the lowlands or the Altiplano. For example, food in the lowland parts of the country tends to be more tropical with yucca and plantains providing the staples of most dishes. Beef is also prominent in this area due to the cattle herding that happens there. For the most variety, La Paz is the place to go while international fare can be found in most big cities. However, to truly embrace Bolivian culture, one should make sure to indulge in the local cuisine.
Popular dishes include:
Chairo: This dish is a lamb soup made with potatoes, vegetables, chuños (a freeze-dried potato) and aji (a spicy sauce).
Salteña: This is a dough pastie that is filled with diced meat, chicken, raisins, peppers and hot sauce. It is often eaten in the morning.
Picante de pollo: This dish consists of southern fried chicken served with fried potatoes, rice, salad and hot peppers.
Carne de sol: With this dish, grilled salted meat is served with beans, rice and vegetables.
Lechón al horno: A roast suckling pig is served with both sweet potatoes and fried plantains.
Bolivia has a relatively new wine industry that has gained some international attention for “the wines of altitude”. Bolivian beer is quite popular with the Huari brand from the Pacheña brewery being one of the favourites. However, if looking for a truly Bolivian local drink, one should try chicha cochabambina. Made from fermented cereals and corn, it is quite strong! Maté de coca is the local tea made from the coca leaf which has the added benefit of helping adjust to Bolivia’s altitude. For those looking for a refreshing drink, jugos (fresh fruit juices) are available at every market.
Things to know:
In regards to tipping, many restaurants will add a service charge onto bills, and it is customary to add a 10% tip on top for good service.
Bolivia Travel Information
At Goway we believe that a well-informed traveller is a safer traveller. With this in mind, we have compiled an easy to navigate travel information section dedicated to Bolivia.
Learn about the history and culture of Bolivia, the must-try food and drink, and what to pack in your suitcase. Read about Bolivia's nature and wildlife, weather and geography, along with 'Country Quickfacts' compiled by our travel experts. Our globetrotting tips, as well as our visa and health information will help ensure you're properly prepared for a safe and enjoyable trip. The only way you could possibly learn more is by embarking on your journey and discovering Bolivia for yourself. Start exploring… book one of our Bolivia tours today!
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