High in the beautiful mountains, Bolivia’s cultural capital is home to lively markets, colonial architecture and a large student population.
Known colloquially as the White City for its whitewashed buildings, Sucre is Bolivia’s constitutional capital, despite most of the nation’s administrative duties taking place in the larger metropolis of La Paz. At an elevation of about 9,200 feet (2,800 meters), the area maintains pleasant temperatures year-round, which perhaps plays a big part in the area’s comfortable, laid-back nature. Find impressive colonial architecture throughout the city. Its cathedrals, university buildings and energetic marketplaces are among its most popular attractions. In 1991 the city was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Explore the city center on foot to experience Sucre’s atmosphere. Here few people are in a hurry. Many visitors to Sucre find themselves staying for much longer than they originally intended. Meet with friendly locals at the restaurants and bars that surround Plaza 25 de Mayo, the city’s main square. Named after the date that the Bolivian War of Independence began in 1809, the square is lined by bold architecture, including that of the Sucre Cathedral.
Radiating out from the square are late-night bars that are filled throughout the week with students from Sucre’s universities. Visit the Universidad de San Francisco Xavier de Chuquisaca to see one of the world’s oldest universities. It has operated in Sucre since 1624.
Be sure to sample local sweets here in Bolivia’s unofficial chocolate capital. Find lively markets throughout Sucre, offering a glimpse of local life in the city. Shop for fresh produce at Mercado Campesino or Mercado Central. Venture outside the city to purchase Yampara textiles at Tarabuco Market.
Sucre is surrounded by natural beauty. Take daytrips to the Seven Cascades, the Maragua Crater and the indigenous village of Candelaria.
Although it is served by domestic and international airlines, Sucre also be reached by train, bus and car from within Bolivia. Accommodations are affordable and plentiful, ranging from simple guesthouses to luxury hotels. Get around Sucre on foot or by metered taxi.