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Geography Landlocked Bolivia is equal in size to California and Texas combined. Brazil forms its eastern border; its other neighbors are Peru and Chile on the west and Argentina and Paraguay on the south. The western part, enclosed by two chains of the Andes, is a great plateau—the Altiplano, with an average altitude of 12,000 ft (3,658 m). Almost half the population lives on the plateau, which contains Oruro, Potosí, and La Paz. At an altitude of 11,910 ft (3,630 m), La Paz is the highest administrative capital city in the world. The Oriente, a lowland region ranging from rain forests to grasslands, comprises the northern and eastern two-thirds of the country. Lake Titicaca, at an altitude of 12,507 ft (3,812 m), is the highest commercially navigable body of water in the world.

Bolivia is Situated at the heart of South America between latitude 9° 38' and 22 ° 53' South and between meridians 57° 25' and 69° 38' of longitude West of Greenwich. It borders with Brazil to the North and East, with Peru and Chile to the West, and Argentina and Paraguay to the South.

Has nine departments: La Paz, Santa Cruz, Cochabamba, Chuquisaca, Potosí, Oruro, Tarija, Beni and Pando. These departments are divided into a total of 94 provinces and sub provinces, the country is also divided into 311 municipalities for local government purposes with city hall elections held every five years. The country has a total surface area of 1,098,581 sq. kilometers, or 428,446 sq. miles.(roughly the size of three Montanas).

Cuisine Generally, in order to enjoy Bolivian cuisine, it is wise to spend the first two days eating lightly and avoiding alcoholic beverages, at least in La Paz. Once the body has become acclimated to the altitude, one can have a great variety of dishes, especially those featuring meats and poultry. If what you are looking for is local dishes, then empanadas salteñas (a type of meat pie), the plato paceño and a big variety of tuberous vegetables and sauces are just a sampling of true Bolivian cuisine. In this South American country, every part of the cow is consumed. Tongue, kidney, stomach, all cuts of meat are available, and they allow the creation of both local and international fare. And if you prefer international foods, in La Paz and Santa Cruz streets there are plenty of Italian, German, French, Brazilian, and Argentine restaurants. Those with exotic palates should try quinua, a plant with triangular leaves and abundant seeds. This authentic Andean food has a high nutritional value, and has awakened scientific curiosity. Today, the quinua is included as part of a balanced diet. Other unusual foods to sample include dehydrated potatoes, or habas and cebada.

Language in Bolivia - Spanish is the main and official language of Bolivia. However there are some 39 other living languages used in the country spoken by people in different regions. Examples include Aymara, Chiquitano, Chiriguano and Guyara. Some 50% of the population have an indigenous language as their mother tongue.

Culture Bolivian culture has many Inca and other Indian influences in religion, music and clothing, such as the well known bowler hats. The best known fiesta is the UNESCO heritage "El carnaval de Oruro". Entertainment includes football, which is the national sport, played in many street corners. Also, zoos are a popular attraction with a diverse population of interesting creatures. Also, Bolivia is full of a variety of festivals, including special dance celebrations, such as the Carnaval de Oruro. Read more about bolivian culture.

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