Potosi, Bolivia

It is claimed Potosi is the highest city in the world at 4,090 m (13,420 feet). It lies beneath the Cerro de Potosi "” sometimes referred to as the Cerro Rico (“rich mountain”) "” a mountain popularly conceived of as being made entirely of silver ore, which has always dominated the city.

Potosi, Bolivia

The Spanish founded Potosi­ in 1545, then set about plundering the wealth of Cerro Rico using slave labour. Hundreds of thousands of people are thought to have died as much from the altitude and cold as from the harsh conditions inside the mines. Potosi soon produced fabulous wealth, becoming one of the largest cities in the Americas and the world with a population exceeding 200,000 people.

Potosi­ is now a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. I spent a couple of nights here, struggling for breath due to the altitude, and wondering around the town’s 2,000 colonial buildings, and a couple of the museums including the old mint.

I didn’t go in the mine, I was too scared.


More photos of Potosi

4 thoughts on “Potosi, Bolivia”

  1. I am happy that you didn´t go to the mines because I remember how much fun you had with the underground tunnels in Colombia 😉
    Great pictures from Uyuni by the way.

  2. brother! you really should be a photographer or cinematographer. You’re very talented!

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