EXPLORING POTOSI “COLONIAL AND MINING”

CERRO RICO (SILVER MINES)

With an Altitude of about 4,800 meters above sea level, Cerro Rico or “Sumaq Urqu” as known in Quechua (Cerro Hermoso) is a mountain of the Andes located in the department of Potosi, Bolivia. Famous because back in Colonial times it had the most important silver production and sales in the world during that time.
In actuality you may visit the “Pailaviri” mine which is the major mine as well as the oldest since it has been continuously worked on since 1545 and is presently property of the state. Divided in 17 different levels, accessible only by an elevator that takes you to a depth of 240 meters, every 3 meters (accessible level to the public) and the average temperature within the mine, may vary from 30ºC to 45ºC. At the main entrance you will find a statue of the “TIO” representing the hideous demon who is also called the Guard of the mine, giving lots of precious metal to whom offers and worships are made daily by miners before entering the depths of the mine and removing the precious metal from it.

SILVER MINES OF CERRO RICO TOUR

08:40 am pick up from the hotel to initiate our great and interesting adventure to the great silver mines of Cerro Rico – Potosi, beginning the tour by visiting the mining market, a place where hundreds of miners gather to get the equipment that is necessary in order to start the journey at the mine: such as: dynamite, ammonium nitrate, detonators, lamps, drills and most important of all for the working miner liquor, and coca leaves.
After the visit to the market we will visit, the refinery of minerals which has maintain active after many years, here you will observe the amalgamation process of minerals, after the visit, we will head towards the silver mines to observe the harsh working environment of the miners as well as the actual extraction of the minerals and silver in its raw form.
Included: Tour Silver Mines (shared transport, guide and safety equipment).

For more information and prices contact us at
reservasturismobolivia@gmail.com
www.boliviaexpedition.com