Everything you Need to Know About a Bolivian Amazon Pampas Tour

A bird sitting on a tree stump in the Bolivian Pampas
A bird sitting on a tree stump in the Bolivian Pampas | © Maciej/Flickr
Harry Stewart

Bolivia’s pampas attracts hordes of budget travelers every year, each arrival as eager as the next to experience the fascinating wildlife on display. And it’s little wonder. Cut-throat competition keeps rates incredibly low, while the wildlife itself is among the most diverse in the Amazon. Here’s everything you need to know about a trip to the pampas.

Where to go

The sweltering jungle town of Rurrenabaque serves as the hub for tours into the pampas and lies about four hours away. Tourist infrastructure in Rurre is relatively well developed, featuring a solid selection of lodgings as well as plenty of gringo-friendly restaurants and bars. For more information, check out our Rurrenabaque guide.

Aerial view of Rurrenabaque, Bolivia

How to get there

Most travelers come to Rurre from La Paz using one of two options: a quick and painless 40-minute flight or a long and arduous bus ride.

Amaszonas run two daily flights in each direction – one in the morning and one in the afternoon – with prices starting at US$72 each way. TAM is much less frequent, offering just a few flights per week.

Several bus companies ply the long mountainous road between the two destinations, most leaving in the early morning from La Paz’ Villa Fatima terminal. The fare costs just US$10, but expect to be miserably uncomfortable and utterly terrified throughout. It’s a bumpy and treacherous ride, despite a newly paved highway which has reduced travel times significantly to around 12 hours or so. Worst of all there is no cama (lie-flat) service. You have been warned.

A bird sitting on a tree stump in the Bolivian Pampas

Booking a tour

Pretty much everyone does the same three-day, two-night pampas tour which can be booked in either La Paz or Rurrenabeque. Expect to pay around 1,000 BOB (US$150) for the all-inclusive tour and try to book locally for the best rate. Tour companies pool travelers together so they’re all essentially the same, aside from a few luxury operators who charge significantly more.

Turtles on the pampas trip

What to bring

Throughout the pampas, the sun blazes during the day and the mosquitos come out in force at night. To prevent yourself from being eaten alive or burnt to a crisp, pack lightweight long-sleeve trousers and shirts, as well as plenty of suncream and repellent. You’ll need some cash, at least 150 BOB (US$23) to pay the national park entry fee and a bit more for snacks and drinks.

Sunset in the Pampas

What to expect

You won’t be going deep into the jungle, but rather a vast wetland on the edge of the rainforest. This is ideal, however, as wildlife love this lush terrain and can be easily spotted due to the distinct lack of trees.

Wildlife safaris are almost entirely undertaken in dugout canoes which feature an onboard hawk-eyed guide who is capable of spotting even the most elusive of animals along the way. Gawking at animals aside, the tour includes a piranha fishing excursion (which are cooked up for lunch) and a swim with friendly pink river dolphins. The only land-based activity is a marshlands hike to search for anaconda who are virtually impossible to actually find.

Onsite accommodation is rustic, consisting of little more than a simple wooden shack that sees several backpackers crammed into a room. Despite best efforts to keep the creepy crawlies out, insects still manage to find their way inside, so always check your bed for venomous looking critters before retiring for the night.

Caiman on a Bolivian pampas tour

Responsible travel

Don’t handle the wildlife or allow your guide to do so. Unbeknownst to many, physical interaction with humans is extremely stressful for wildlife and can literally cause them to die from shock. Similarly, feeding the animals makes them become dependant on humans which has disastrous long-term consequences. Sorry to be a party pooper.

Squirrel Monkey in the Bolivian Pampas
culture trip left arrow
 culture trip brand logo

Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip

meet our Local Insider


women sitting on iceberg


2 years.


It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.


I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!

culture trip logo letter c
group posing for picture on iceberg
group posing for picture on iceberg

Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.

map of volcanic iceland trip destination points
culture trip brand logo
culture trip right arrow
landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.