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Tiahuanaco is the most important archaeological site in Bolivia. Near the village bearing the same name, you will find the archaeological ruins of pre-Inca culture known as Tiahuanaco or Tiawanaku.

Tiahuanaco, tiawanaco, tiawanaku. Bolivia

The ruins of Tiahuanaco are located 3,885 over the sea level, 70 km from the city of La Paz (by road), and about 15 km from Titicaca Lake.

Getting to Tiahuanaco

From La Paz there are buses leaving every half hour from Calle Jose Maria Asin (in the area of the La Paz cemetery). The travel lasts about 1.30 hours. There are also several travel agencies organizing one-day tours.

Tiahuanaco can be visited in one day, but you may also prefer to stay overnight in the area and continue your visit on the following day. If so, you can stay in any of the hostels and bed and breakfasts in the small town near the ruins.

The opening times to visit the ruins are 9 am to 5 pm.

Tiahuanaco culture is one of the most lasting in South America (it survived over 27 centuries: from 1500 BC to 1200 AD). Its physical domains extended over 600,000 square km. Tiahuanacos achieved important developments in science, technology, agriculture and architecture.

Tiawanaco in Bolivia. Travel Information

Influences of Tiahuanaco culture have been found in Ecuador, Peru, Argentina and Chile.

Sun's Door
La Puerta del Sol (Sun's Door) is a Tiwanaku monument worldwide known as the greatest example of the degree of perfection reached by this culture, both by its art and its symbols cherishing its carved relieves.

Puerta del Sol (Sun's Door) is the most significant of Tiahuanaco. The frieze shows the image of the Sun God holding a scepter with birds´ figures in each hand. Zoomorphic figures spread from its head spray like rays, among which it's possible to see feline faces. Many of the figures en in solar discs, suggesting that the Sun is life and God is capable of supporting it. On God’s face draws the silhouette of a puma. Down His arms hang two trophy heads. The Sun God, is surrounded by 32 figures of Men-Sun and 16 Eagle-Men figures.

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This beautiful site lithe-worked in a single block of andesite stone weighting about 10 tons wasn’t in the past an isolated piece. Rather, this was part of a larger building that could’ve been located at the top of the Akapana Pyramid or even in the same Kalasasaya, where there are several pieces of the same material of that door.

Akapana Pyramid
Akapana was a pyramid 800-meter perimeter and 18 meter high consisting of 7 terraces. The top of the pyramid was building for religious worship and astrology. For its construction were used various techniques, so it's presumed that it why it took so long to build.

Tiawanaco Ruins in Bolivia
Ruins in Bolivia

Kalasasaya (kala = stone; saya or sayasta = stand), or Stand Stones Temple (Templo de las Piedras Paradas), has an exact design linked to astrology. From this site the duration of the solar year and the change of each season were verified. In both equinox (autumn, March 21, and spring, 21 September), the sun rose in the center of the main entrance. In the winter solstice (June 21), the Sun rose in the northeast murarian corner. The summer solstice (December 21) was marked by the sunrise in the southeast murarian corner. This accuracy is an example of scientific and technical progress of the Tiahuanaco culture.

Ponce Monolith
Named after the Bolivian archaeologist (Carlos Ponce) who discovered it in 1957. It's one of the best achieved and preserved figures in all Tiahuanaco. The human figure holds a kero (sacred glass) in her hands, also highlighting the figures of animals like pumas, condors and eagles.

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Tiawanako Tour in Bolivia Tiahuanaco Travel Information Tiahuanaco Ruins near La Paz

Tiahuanaco Travel Information


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