On this private 3-hour tour from Potosi, experience what it's like to work in the mines of Cerro Rico, and tour this city at 14,520 feet (4,400m) —one of the highest cities in the world. Accompanied by your private guide, you'll enjoy a sightseeing tour of Potosi and stop at a mining market, before touring an active mine outside town and interacting with workers. It's here where you'll see the harsh conditions the miners endure each day, and get the feel for live as a local up here at Cerro Rico.
This 3-hour journey begins with a sightseeing tour around Potosí, as well as a stop at the mining market on your way up to Cerro Rico.
At the market you'll find the tools and materials that miners use every day, and you can buy dynamite, alcohol and coca leaves to give as presents to the miners. Shortly before dropping down into the mines, you'll make a stop at a small storage room to don work pants, a jacket, boots, helmet, as well as a lamp for security.
These mines are all located in the heart of Potosí's historical Cerro Rico—a place that translates as "Hill of Riches," considering over two billion ounces of silver have been extracted. The work in the mines is hard, however, and the process today is still much the same as it was when the mines were founded. Hear the tales of dynamite explosions and air compressors beneath ground, and tour the different galleries and levels throughout the mine's maze-like interior.
Since the subterranean work is dangerous, you'll also see the small statues where miners pray for protection, as well as the interesting mineral veins and chemical formations in the rocks. Perhaps most humbling is having the chance to talk with the miners themselves, and offer them gifts as a small token of your appreciation for their work.
At the end of the tour you are driven back to the departure point in Potosi.