Its scenic beauty is unmatched due to the presence of the imposing Sajama Snowpeak, high-Andean lagoons, thermal waters, and mountain climbing routes. It is also characterized by its queñua small woods covering more than 10,000 hectares at 5,200 m, which is the highest woody formation in the world.
Category: National Park
Biogeographical sub regions, altitudinal range and climate: It belongs to the Puna, the altitudinal range ranges from 4,000 to 6,542 meters above sea level; the region of the Cordillera Occidental or volcanic, characterized by its extensive plateaus, high-Andean lagoons and volcanic imposing cones such as the Payachatas and Sajama Snowpeak, which is the highest point in Bolivia. The climate is cold with summer rains and ice all year round.
Vegetation and flora: 154 species of plants were identified and it is estimated the existence of 250 species of higher plants. The vegetation of the High-Andean floor offers tough and siliciferous grasses. The bofedales (wetlands) cover 10% of the Sajama Park and become the most important socio-environmental vegetation unit. In the arboreal flora, there are forests of queñua (Polylepis tarapacana), tolas similar to scrublands (Parastrephia charcoal for incense, P. lucid, Baccharis incarum), and yareta (Azorella compacta).
Fauna: 108 species of fauna were identified on the Sajama Park and the most representative are the vicuña (Vicugna vicugna), the quirquincho (Chaetophractus nationi), the Andean cat or titi (Felis jacobita), puma (Felis concolor), suri (Pterocnemia pennata), the Andean condor (Vultur gryphus), the chocka (Fulica gigantea), the parihuano (Phoenicopterus chilensis), and small birds like Asthenes arequipae, Oreomanes fraseri and Phrygilus erythronotus.
Local population: The human occupation in the area is ancient and the settlers, of Aymara origin, belong to the Karanga ethnic group. At present, there are some 80 scattered ranchs making up the 60% of the people who live inside the park where the cantons of Curahuara de Carangas (Sajama, Caripe and lagoons) join with a part of the canton Cosapa of the municipality of Turco. It is estimated that there are around 1,000 inhabitants.
Its scenic beauty is unmatched due to the presence of the imposing Sajama Snowpeak, high-Andean lagoons, thermal waters, and mountain climbing routes. It is also characterized by its queñua small woods covering more than 10,000 hectares at 5,200 m, which is the highest woody formation in the world. The Sajama Park also houses historical archaeological sites of great cultural value as the Chullpas, pictographs, pre-Columbian ruins in the circuit of Lauca River and colonial churches such as the one of Curahuara de Carangas. The tourists who practice ecotourism and mountaineering activities have enabled the community of Tomarapi to build an ecolodge with excellent lodging and food services.
- Location: The Sajama Park is located in the northwest of the department of Oruro, in the Sajama province. The municipalities of Turco and Curahuara de Carangas are part of this region bordering to the department of La Paz and Chile (Lauca National Park).
- Average temperature: 8 ºC.
From La Paz, you can get to the park taking the route to Patacamaya and then heading to Tambo Quemado, near Chilean border, which is also the route to go to Lauca National Park and then to Arica. Buese can be taken from La Paz to Arica and Iquique or directly from Patacamaya. In this route, it is advisable to visit the church in Curahuara de Carangas. Visitors heading to Oruro can take the route to Turco to continue their trip to Cosapa. In this case, we recommend that you go in a private vehicle.