La Paz’s Anniversary
Fiestas de fundación 487 aniversario!
After two years of fiesta-less anniversaries, our favourite cultural and sporting events are finally coming back to La Paz!
Thanks to a green light Covid status and the desire to get back to the city’s traditional ways, from April 29th to May 31st, La Paz will once again celebrate the “founding” of its lands by Hernan Cortes, a Spanish conquistador.
This moment in history is reenacted every year during the opening weekend of the Fiesta de Fundacion, with a dolled-up fisherman’s panga standing in for the landing party’s vessel and local actors reenacting the first meeting between the Christian spaniards and local indigenous peoples. Following this, onlookers witness the absolutely gorgeous “crowning of Queen Calafia”, in her grand costume of gold armour, seashells and a peacock feather headdress. Catch this one-of-a-kind spectacle this year on May 3rd at 7:30pm, right on the Malecon beach!
Fun fact: Queen Calafia is a mythical figure who, along with her badass all-female warrior crew, ruled over this "island" loaded with gold. Hernan Cortes was such a fan of the character and the story that he named the peninsula in her honor California (even though his own search for gold here went unrewarded).
There are also traditional dancing shows, live music concerts, gastronomic exhibitions and music & art workshops. The best thing is that these events are spread out all around the city center and are mostly free!
If you don’t want to analyze the schedule and just wander about, I’d suggest walking the Malecon, entering the Museo Regional de Antropologia e Historia (about 3 blocks behind the Cathedral, on Calle Ignacio Altamirano, so totally walkable), and also the Centro Cultural La Paz (on 16 de Septiembre about 2 blocks up from the Malecon). These locations will have something going on pretty much the entire month of May.
On the sporting side of things, the City has organized an Off-Road race called “Dos Mares 500” for April 29th & May 1st. This is very possibly the most exciting and high-octane event for the local residents! The intersection of the Malecon and Calle General Marques de Leon acts as a check point for this 500km race, so be prepared for lots of loud engine revving and incredibly specialized cars on display.
There is also a 5km run along the Malecon at 8:00am on May 1st (proceeds from this race will go to a local women’s shelter), a Skateboarding and BMX demonstration at 4:00pm on May 7th, a 3-on-3 national basketball tournament from May 13th-15th, and a beach volleyball tournament from May 20th-22nd. So much outdoor fun!
For a city that is so proud of its traditions and pours all of its heart and soul into its festivals, I am very excited that this year’s anniversary will once again be the affair its citizens deserve. If you’re booking your La Paz accommodations with Trip&homes, you’ll be perfectly positioned to participate in these incre