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Train Travel in Bolivia
Bolivia's domestic train system is relatively limited but offers a safe and comfortable alternative to bus travel. You can find two train hubs: one in western Bolivia and also in the Eastern lowlands of Bolivia in the city of Santa Cruz.
The train in eastern Bolivia is run by a company called Ferrocarril Oriental and they run two railway lines: one from Santa Cruz going east to the Brazilian border at Quijjaro. The other from Santa Cruz going south to Yacuiba on the Argentina border.
The train station in Santa Cruz is located at a place called the Terminal Bimodal (dual bus and train station). To find more about schedules and rates visit Ferroviaria Oriental website at www.ferroviariaoriental.com. Their website is currently only in Spanish and Portuguese.
The main train station in western Bolivia is in Oruro and is located on Calle Velasco Galvarro and Calle Aldana, go there for information about schedules and reservations.
Train travel is run by a company from Chile called Empresa Ferroviaria Andina S.A. (www.fca.com.bo). The train is popular to take among travelers connecting to the Uyuni salt desert. Trains runs south from Oruro to Uyuni and on to Tupiza and then to Villazon on the border with Argentina.
From Uyuni, there is also another rail line that runs southeast to Calama in Chile. The company also recently reopened a service between Sucre and Potosi.
There are two types of trains: the more comfortable and faster Expreso del Sur and the cheaper but slower Wara Wara del Sur.
Expresso del Sur offers first-class cabins, bar, waiters and food. The Wara Wara del Sur has three different classes of carriage and services of varying cost and comfort, ranging from $3-$20 depending on class and distance traveled.
Currently, the company only sells train tickets the day before or on the day of travel. The lines to buy tickets can get long, so get there early to buy tickets or expect to wait a while in line. The train company takes reservations in advance, but you still have to wait in line to buy a ticket. (See Below for train ticket office hours.)
Train Ticket office hours in OruroBelow are the office hours in Oruro to buy train tickets, current as of 2008.
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