Valle de La Luna (Valley of the Moon)
The road to the Valley of the Moon follows the canyon, which has been carved by the Choqueyapu river, and passes fields with more than 30 different species of cacti. Day trips from La Paz are the most popular way of visiting the valley, since wandering the trail takes only about an hour. Most day-trips to the Valley of the Moon include a sightseeing excursion through Quito, visiting La Paz’s historic core to visit the city’s prominent monuments such as the Presidential Palace, La Paz Cathedral, and the Witches Market. Multi-day tours combine excursions to Copacabana, Lake Titicaca, and Salar de Uyuni.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Valle de la Luna is ideal for walkers, hikers, and adventure seekers.
- There is a small admission fee; bring cash.
- Wear comfortable shoes and layered clothes, and sun protection.
- The site has walking paths and rails but it is not wheelchair accessible.
- There are gift shops and small stores outside that sell snacks and water, but it is best to bring your own just in case the store is closed.
How to Get There
Valley of the Moon is located about 6 miles (10 kilometers) from the city center of La Paz. Organized tours usually have packages that include transport service, but you can easily take colectivos and taxis. Expect about 40 minutes on the road from the downtown area.
When to Get There
The valley is open from morning until afternoon, Mondays through Fridays. Plan a visit to La Paz between May and June to coincide with the Fiesta del Gran Poder, one of Bolivia's most celebrated religious festivals that features the entrada, a colorful procession featuring costumed dancers, and brass bands.
Nearby Mt. Chacaltaya
Often included in day tours to Valley of the Moon, the majestic Mt. Chacaltaya was once home to the highest ski resort in the world. Chacaltaya means bridge of ice, and many of the older La Paz residents have memories of skiing on this magnificent mountain. Climate change has melted the glacier leading to the closing of the resort in 2009, however, the Chacaltaya Observatory is still open and the mountain has become popular with climbers.