Explore a different destination UNESCO World Heritage Site Fuerte de Samaipata, Bolivia

Fuerte de Samaipata is an archaeological site in Bolivia that was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site during the 22nd session of the World Heritage Committee in Kyoto, Japan from 30 November to 5 December 1998. Also known simply as El Fuerte, it is a pre-Columbian religious site built by the Chanes Indians, a pre-Inca civilisation. The sculptured rocks of Fuerte de Samaipata is regarded as one of the most outstanding pre-Hispanic remains.

Fuerte de Samaipata comprises a hill with ancient carvings, and the area to the south of the hill, which was the ancient living area. The Incas also built a city near the Chanes temples. Both the Chanes and the Incas were attacked by Guarani Indians from time to time. The Guaranis eventually destroyed Samaipata, and was dominant in the region until the Spaniards colonized the area.

The archaeological site of Fuerte de Samaipata emcompasses heritage structures of the Chanes, Incas and the Spaniards.

Photos of Fuerte de Samaipata

Fuerte de Samaipata
Fuerte de Samaipata
Author: Pattrön (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Fuerte de Samaipata
Fuerte de Samaipata
Author: Franz Barjak (public domain)

Fuerte de Samaipata
Fuerte de Samaipata
Author: Mhwater (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Village of Samaipata, near the archaeological site
Village of Samaipata, near the archaeological site
Author: Natalia Rivera (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

What to See in Fuerte de Samaipata

El Cascabel
El Cascabel is the most important rock carving at El Fuerte. It comprises two parallel lines that point to certain points in the eastern sky. Archaeologists believe that the carvings may be commemorating the appearance of Halley's Comet in March of 1066.

World Heritage Site Inscription Details

Location: S 18 10 W 63 49
Inscription Year: 1998
Type of Site: Cultural
Inscription Criteria: II, III

Location Map

View Fuerte de Samaipata in a larger map

Visiting Fuerte de Samaipata

Your base for visiting this World Heritage Site is the town of Santa Cruz. From there, you can get a travel agency to help you make the arrangement.

Getting there

The distance to Fuerte de Samaipata is around 3 hours by road. An option is to get a taxi. In anticipation of arriving in Santa Cruz, here's a list of budget hotels in Santa Cruz with online booking. Also listed here are the hotels in La Paz, the capital of Bolivia.

Book Hotel Rooms in Bolivia and Worldwide

Click here also for a full list of hotels in Bolivia or hotels worldwide. If you prefer budget accommodation in hostels, guesthouses or inns, check out hostels worldwide for budget accommodation providers with online booking.

Return to Bolivia's World Heritage Sites
Return to UNESCO World Heritage Sites

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