My wife and I went back to Bolivia this year to see the Carnival in Oruro and to see the Salar, which was too flooded last year when we were there. We decided to balance out our two week trip by doing something different by visiting Quime, which is kind of on the way to Oruro from La Paz.
Marko was great corresponding with me leading up to our vacation and told us that he was going to be out of the country at the time of our visit and that someone named Franz would be there and would be expecting us. Not a problem for us. When we got there around 1pm, we couldn't find anyone and searched and knocked until about a half hour i think we finally woke Franz up. After showing us our room, we really didn't see much of him after that. In fact, Franz was probably the most unhelpful person ever to be in charge of a hostal that i have ever met. If we were on the front porch, he would practically run past us just to avoid having to talk to us or answer any questions we might have. If we hadn't met two very nice young girls from Colorado to hang out with, we would have left to stay at Hotel Quime in town. I'm sure if Marko were there we would be able to get more information about the great day hikes that Quime is supposed to offer, instead we were on our own. Quime surprisingly has a tourist office, unfortunately every time we tried to visit it was closed. But the girls from Colorado were able to get some info and we did the hike one day from nearby Pongo to waterfalls with the lake at the top of the mountain. It was really beautiful. One other day we tried to do another hike recommended by the tourist office but i think we missed the path and stayed on a road that followed the river. It was pretty nice anyway, and we had lunch by a waterfall and walked back.
Marko's place is charming, at the top of the hill from Quime nestled in tree filled area with a great variety of plants and flowers some which are attractive to hummingbirds which are pleasant to see while relaxing on the porch. The kitchen is large and open and we had a great time with our new friends cooking meals together and deciding which movie to watch in the connected living room after. We didn't have any hot water while we were there so we had to wait until we were in Oruro to take a shower. Since Franz was so unsocial it was hard to tell if he was interested in fixing it or not.
In spite of Franz, and not being able to do and many hikes as we would like, i would still recommend staying here, but you might want to check if Marko is there first. i'm sure our experience would have been much better with more information about the hikes, the area and the place.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A colonial hacienda built within pre-inca style terracing, overlooking 50 miles of valleys and mountains. the Hacienda Colibrí was built on a barren eroded mountainside above Quime. I restored the soil and terracing. It has a bird refuge with 50 species of birds within the hummingbird garden and enchanted forest. The hostel is located 4 blocks uphill from the alcalde in the main plaza and one block right, ask the kids for Don Marko “el gringo”. ... more less