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Torotoro
Potosí

Tourist information

Torotoro and Sajama Parks as well as Eduardo Avaroa National Reserve hold the most impressive landscapes of the country. They have important geomorphologic and geologic sites such as the vast Umajalanta and Chiflonqaqa caves, among others. There are also dinosaur footprints, areas with abundant fossils and important Inca ruins and rock paintings.

Category: National Park

Biogeographical sub regions, altitudinal range and climate: Prepuna is a typically mountainous region with deep canyons, valleys and waterfalls. The altitudinal range ranges from 1,900 to 3,600 m and the climate is mild with rainfall levels lower than 600 mm in the region of the dry inter-Andean valleys.

Vegetation and flora: the Torotoro Park offers interesting species such as quebracho (Aspidosperma spp), pino de monte (Podocarpus parlatorei). There are relicts of the natural vegetation due to the strong human impact like the evergreen bushes of Podocarpus spp. In the relict of deciduous forest of Llama Chaqui, in the highlands, there are traces of queñua (polilepis spp.) scrublands.

Fauna:The scarce relictual fauna of the area includes the taruca (Hippocamelus antiensis), the titi (Felis jacobita), the world endemic red-fronted macaw (Ara rubrogenys), the monk parakeet (Myopsitta monachus) the Bolivian blackbird (Oreopsar bolivianus- endemic), and other species of endemic birds such as the Upucerthia harterti and Satenes heterura.

Local Population: The settlement pattern in the park is of ancient origin. People mainly live in the valley of Torotoro; the surrounding communities are Huayra Q'asa, Wila Q'asa, Huayllas, Viluyo, Laguna, Cruz Q'asa, Inca Corral, Estrellani, Molle Cancha, and Hacienda Loma.

Torotoro and Sajama Parks as well as Eduardo Avaroa National Reserve hold the most impressive landscapes of the country. They have important geomorphologic and geologic sites such as the vast Umajalanta and Chiflonqaqa caves, among others. There are also dinosaur footprints, areas with abundant fossils and important Inca ruins and rock paintings.

One of the special attractions is the impressive canyon of the Valley of Torotoro, where El Vergel is located. Torotoro is an authentic paradise for lovers of geology, paleontology and speleology because it is possible to find prints of large reptiles of the Mesozoic era and deep caverns of karstic origin. It has an important variety of paleontological traces in rocks of Paleozoic, Mesozoic and probably Cenozoic eras. They are not very known except the dinosaur cretaceous dichnites and the fossils of Paleozoic invertebrates. These fossils belonging to traces and prints of fossilized animals that inhabited the seas and continents are distributed throughout the area of the Torotoro Park.

The fossilized footprints of dinosaurs of about 130 million years old belong to the types of theropodous dinosaurs or carnosauria and the sauropod dinosaurs or Apatosaurus and marine fossils or around 350 million years make us to imagine the value of these paleontological resources. On the other hand, the pre-hispanic time of the cave paintings discovered in the area were not determined yet. The Park is home to important speleological sites such as the Umajalanta cave, Chiflón Qaqa. It is important to conduct more in-depth researches to learn about the underground network as a whole. The Umajalanta cave houses in its interior small blind fish (Trichomucterus chaverti), which are a great attraction in the scientific field of bio-speleology.

- Extension: 16,570 hectares (165 km2); The access to the Torotoro Park is from the city of Cochabamba (department of Cochabamba).
- Location: The park is located to the northeast of the department of Potosi, border to Cochabamba.
- Average temperature: 15°C

The only way to access is taking the 140 km Cochabamba-Torotoro route, passing through Tarata or Cliza, and Anzaldo. It takes 4 hours in a private vehicle and around 5 and a half hour in public transportation. You can take a 25 m small-plane flight from Cochabamba to Torotoro. In dry season, there are daily flights, but you have to contract the service in advance.