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Tuesday 25th June
Bolivia Information - Page 1
The Republic of Bolivia is a landlocked country in South America. It is bordered by Chile, Peru, Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina.

La Paz is the seat of government; Sucre is the location of the Supreme Court. Other major cities include Santa Cruz and Cochabamba.

The terrain consists of the Andes Mountains, highland plateau (altiplano), hills, and lowland plains of the Amazon Basin. Rivers include the Beni and the Mamore. Lake Titicaca, shared with Peru, is the largest lake in South America.

Bolivia is within the tropics but the climate varies with altitude: tropical to cold and semiarid.

There are a number of national parks and protected areas in Bolivia. In 1939 Sajama National Park became the first protected area in the country. Madidi National Park, founded in 1995, is said to be one of the world's largest reserves.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, on the World Heritage List, comprises of almost four million acres of forests, savannahs and wetlands.

Bolivia has many species of birds: caracaras, flycatchers, hawks, herons, kingfishers, macaws, parakeets, toucans and woodpeckers. Animals in Bolivia include the giant anteater, giant armadillo, jaguar, howler monkey, spider monkey and tapir.

The city of Tiwanaku, the capital of a pre-Hispanic empire, was inscribed as a World Heritage site in 2000. The buildings are examples of ceremonial and public architecture of the Tiwanaku civilization.

The City of Potosi, dating back to the 1540s as a mining town, is also on the World Heritage List. Silver from the mountain known as Cerro Rico financed many houses and religious buildings in the region. The architectural style was Baroque with indigenous influence.

The Historic City of Sucre, another UNESCO site, began as an early Spanish town. A number of sixteenth century religious buildings have been preserved. Other World Heritage buildings in Bolivia are the Jesuit Missions of the Chiquitos, mainly built in the eighteenth century.

The population of Bolivia was estimated at 10,118,683 in 2011.

Official languages are Spanish, Aymara and Quechua.

The majority of the people of Bolivia are Roman Catholic. The Protestant religion is Evangelical Methodist.

Beans, corn and potatoes are staple foods in Bolivia. Soups and stews are eaten. Meat dishes are often hot and spicy. Filled pastries, such as empanadas and saltenas, are popular.

Cassava, carrots, onions, peppers, quinoa, rice and tomatoes are available. Fruits include bananas, cherimoyas, grapes, mangoes, oranges, papayas, peaches and pineapples.

Coffee is grown and yerba mate is a traditional herbal tea. Beer and wine are produced locally. Chica, a drink made from maize, is the regional alcoholic drink.

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