One of the full day activities is cycling down the death road, it is definitely worth it, but you should go with an organised group to enjoy it.
You may have heard of the death road in documentaries or in TinTin’s adventures, this road has gained its fame over time but why?
If you like adrenaline and naturalism this is the trip for you.
So here are 5 facts about the famous death road.
IT’S WAS BUILT BY PRISONERS
Officially known as The North Yungas Road, the route was constructed by Paraguayan Prisoners of War from the Chaco war from 1932 to 1936. in order to connect La Paz with Las Yungas (The cloud forest).
“WORLD’S MOST DANGEROUS ROAD”
In 1995, the Interamerican Development Bank declared it the an unenviable moniker which is still in use today. An estimated 300 people per year perished here before construction of a newer road between La Paz and Coroico was completed in 2006. Since then the is not used anymore but for tourism.
THE VIEWS ARE INCREDIBLE
The landscapes that you will see are priceless because of the unevenness of the route, being the highest point 4700mts reaching less than 1000mts, then you will pass through different ecological floors with different landscapes, from the periglacial desert, to the rainforest.
You will feel your lungs fill with oxygen as you lose altitude.
Another of the most striking features of the road, especially for mountain biking enthusiasts, is the cumulative difference in altitude that you will have if you do the whole route, which is around 5000 metres.
This, for those who don’t know about cycling, is the sum of all the gradients that are overcome on the route and which, more graphically described, would be something like this: the start is in La Paz (at 3,600 metres) and it goes to the area of “La Cumbre” at 4,700 metres (also located in La Paz) and then descends to the Yungas valleys at just over 1,000 metres.
IT’S NOT THE MAIN ROAD ANYMORE
Although many travellers’ blogs say that this road is still in use or even that it has been asphalted, none of this is true.
The road has not been in use since 2006, being used only by cyclists and their vehicles or some adrenaline-seeking drivers.
The current road goes by a different route, so if you decide to go to the Yungas (rain forest) in a car you will not pass through the road of death, unless you require it for tourist reasons but at the date of this publication the road is closed due to a landslide in 2020.
If you are interested in living this experience contact us, we organize custom made tours and private tours, this in order to offer a good service.
Travel with us, we are Bolivian Routes