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La Paz History, Bolivia



Spanish settlers founded the city of La Pas in 1548 on the site of an old aymara village.  At its inception, the city was a commercial stopping point as it lay on the silver and gold routes to the sea.  The Spanish settlers took the mines away from the Aymaras and put them to work as slaves.  Eventually, the population became mixed, reflecting its roots in today’s Bolivian society.

La Paz has always endured pirates and conquistadores, with pirates often servicing their ships near the city.  Daring and risky, the history of this city has been built on war and strife.

During the 1600’s, gold was almost mined away and La Paz’s location in between Lima and Potosi allowed the city to grow as a stopping point on the trade routes.  Before long, La Paz became one of the riches towns in the Andes.

In 1825, Bolivia finally achieved independence, which allowed the city to grow even more.  By 1879, however, Bolivia had lost a great deal of its coastline to Chile.  In 1898, Las Paz was designated as Bolivia’s capital, which led to an enormous development within the city.

The turn of the century brought the railroad, which linked La Paz to the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.  In 1952, a national revolution won equal rights for indigenous people and marked another time of growth in the city’s history.

In the 21 century, La Paz is a sprawling metropolis, with emphasize placed on government and history.  Money Magazine has recently declared La Paz as the top place in the world to retire.  The Sea of Cortez bathes this wonderful city in beautiful sunsets and offers a great variety of things to do. 

This city is great place to discover Bolivia and the many trials in Bolivia and its capital city’s history.

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