The best time to visit Bolivia depends on your priorities: places visited, weather, availability, preferred activities, local seasonality, local festivals and other cultural events.
Bolivia is an all-year destination, but its variety of landscapes from the Altiplano in the high Andes, including La Paz and Lake Titicaca, lower altitude sierras around Sucre, Oriente tropical lowlands of Santa Cruz and the Amazon jungle means that the weather may be optimum for a visit at different times in the various locations. The pre-Columbian and Spanish colonial heritage is on show in a number of fiestas and other cultural events you may wish to factor into the timing of your holiday in Bolivia.
- The mountainous region of the Andes, including La Paz, Potosi and Lake Titicaca and the trekking region of the Andes is at its best from May-Oct, when the sun shines with just a little rain. The region receives more foreign visitors in Jul-Aug; May and September are quieter; but numbers are modest at any time. Religious-inspired fiestas abound, most notable are the Carnival festival in Oruro (February), Gran Poder in La Paz (May or Jun), Christmas and the moveable feast of Easter.
- During the Amazon’s wet season (Nov-Apr) it’s easier to get round by boat and the cloud offers a protection from the strong sun. The somewhat hotter dry season (May-Oct) is sunnier and better for wildlife-spotting from jungle trails.
- The eastern lowlands around Santa Cruz enjoy hot and sultry weather all year round, with daytime temperatures rarely falling below 20°C. The drier season (Apr-Nov) is most pleasant, Crucenos are very sociable and host many conferences and conventions throughout the year, while Carnival (the four days prior to Ash Wednesday) is celebrated enthusiastically.
- The Uyuni salt flats are dazzling white in the dry, sunny weather of Jun-Sep, when they are most accessible. In Jan-Apr, the rain falls, it can be muddy but the sky is reflected magnificently in the standing water on the flats.