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By the way, we would recommend you to combine your visit to Santa Cruz de la Sierra with other popular and interesting places of Bolivia, for example: Sucre, La Paz, Uyuni, Oruro, Quillacollo, Santa Cruz de la Sierra, El Alto, etc.
How to Book a Hotel in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
In order to book an accommodation in Santa Cruz de la Sierra enter the proper dates and do the hotel search. If needed, sort the found Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels by price, star rating, property type, guest rating, hotel features, hotel theme or hotel chain. Then take a look at the found hotels on Santa Cruz de la Sierra map to estimate the distance from the main Santa Cruz de la Sierra attractions and sights. You can also read the guest reviews of Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels and see their ratings.
When a hotel search in Santa Cruz de la Sierra is done, please select the room type, the included meals and the suitable booking conditions (for example, "Deluxe double room, Breakfast included, Non-Refundable"). Press the "View Deal" ("Book Now") button. Make your booking on a hotel booking website and get the hotel reservation voucher by email. That's it, a perfect hotel in Santa Cruz de la Sierra is waiting for you!
Hotels of Santa Cruz de la Sierra
A hotel in Santa Cruz de la Sierra is an establishment that provides lodging paid on a short-term basis. Facilities provided may range from a basic bed and storage for clothing, to luxury features like en-suite bathrooms. Larger in Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare, conference facilities and social function services. Hotel rooms in Santa Cruz de la Sierra are usually numbered (or named in some smaller hotels and B&Bs) to allow guests to identify their room. Some Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. Hotel operations vary in size, function, and cost. Most Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels and major hospitality companies that operate hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra have set widely accepted industry standards to classify hotel types. General categories include the following:
Upscale luxury hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
An upscale full service hotel facility in Santa Cruz de la Sierra that offers luxury amenities, full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and the highest level of personalized and professional service. Luxury Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels are normally classified with at least a Four Diamond or Five Diamond status or a Four or Five Star rating depending on classification standards.
Full service hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Full service Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels often contain upscale full-service facilities with a large volume of full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and a variety of on-site amenities such as swimming pools, a health club, children's activities, ballrooms, on-site conference facilities, etc.
Historic inns and boutique hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Boutique hotels of Santa Cruz de la Sierra are smaller independent non-branded hotels that often contain upscale facilities of varying size in unique or intimate settings with full service accommodations. Santa Cruz de la Sierra boutique hotels are generally 100 rooms or less. Some historic inns and boutique hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra may be classified as luxury hotels.
Focused or select service hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Small to medium-sized hotel establishments that offer a limited amount of on-site amenities that only cater and market to a specific demographic of Santa Cruz de la Sierra travelers, such as the single business traveler. Most Santa Cruz de la Sierra focused or select service hotels may still offer full service accommodations but may lack leisure amenities such as an on-site restaurant or a swimming pool.
Economy and limited service hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Small to medium-sized Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotel establishments that offer a very limited amount of on-site amenities and often only offer basic accommodations with little to no services, these facilities normally only cater and market to a specific demographic of travelers, such as the budget-minded Santa Cruz de la Sierra traveler seeking a "no frills" accommodation. Limited service Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels often lack an on-site restaurant but in return may offer a limited complimentary food and beverage amenity such as on-site continental breakfast service.
Guest houses and B&Bs in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
A bed and breakfast in Santa Cruz de la Sierra is a small lodging establishment that offers overnight accommodation and inclusive breakfast. Usually, Santa Cruz de la Sierra bed and breakfasts are private homes or family homes offering accommodations. The typical Santa Cruz de la Sierra B&B has between 4 and 11 rooms, with 6 being the average. Generally, guests are accommodated in private bedrooms with private bathrooms, or in a suite of rooms including an en suite bathroom. Some homes have private bedrooms with a bathroom which is shared with other guests. Breakfast is served in the bedroom, a dining room, or the host's kitchen. Often the owners of guest house themselves prepare the breakfast and clean the rooms.
Hostels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Santa Cruz de la Sierra hostels provide budget-oriented, sociable accommodation where guests can rent a bed, usually a bunk bed, in a dormitory and share a bathroom, lounge, and sometimes a kitchen. Rooms can be mixed or single-sex, although private rooms may also be available. Hostels are often cheaper for both the operator and occupants; many Santa Cruz de la Sierra hostels have long-term residents whom they employ as desk agents or housekeeping staff in exchange for experience or discounted accommodation.
Apartment hotels, extended stay hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Extended stay hotels are small to medium-sized Santa Cruz de la Sierra hotels that offer longer term full service accommodations compared to a traditional hotel. Extended stay hotels may offer non-traditional pricing methods such as a weekly rate that cater towards travelers in need of short-term accommodations for an extended period of time. Similar to limited and select service hotels, on-site amenities are normally limited and most extended stay hotels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra lack an on-site restaurant.
Timeshare and destination clubs in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Santa Cruz de la Sierra timeshare and destination clubs are a form of property ownership also referred to as a vacation ownership involving the purchase and ownership of an individual unit of accommodation for seasonal usage during a specified period of time. Timeshare resorts in Santa Cruz de la Sierra often offer amenities similar that of a Full service hotel with on-site restaurant(s), swimming pools, recreation grounds, and other leisure-oriented amenities. Destination clubs of Santa Cruz de la Sierra on the other hand may offer more exclusive private accommodations such as private houses in a neighborhood-style setting.
Motels in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
A Santa Cruz de la Sierra motel is a small-sized low-rise lodging establishment similar to that of a limited service hotel, but with direct access to individual rooms from the car park. Common during the 1950s and 1960s, motels were often located adjacent to a major road, where they were built on inexpensive land at the edge of towns or along stretches of highways. They are still useful in less populated areas of Santa Cruz de la Sierra for driving travelers, but the more populated an area becomes the more hotels fill the need. Many of Santa Cruz de la Sierra motels which remain in operation have joined national franchise chains, rebranding themselves as hotels, inns or lodges.
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Travelling and vacation in Santa Cruz de la Sierra
Santa Cruz de la Sierra (locally: [ˈsanta ˈkɾus de la ˈsjera]) (English: Holy Cross of the Mountain–Range), commonly known as Santa Cruz (locally: [ˈsanta ˈkɾus]), is the capital of the Santa Cruz department in eastern Bolivia. Situated on the Pirai River in eastern Bolivia, the city of Santa Cruz and its metropolitan area are home to over 70% of the population of the department and it is one of the fastest-growing cities in the world. The city was first founded in 1561 by Spanish explorer Ñuflo de Chavez about 200 km (124 mi) east of its current location, and was moved several times until it was finally established on the Pirai River in the late 16th century. For much of its history, Santa Cruz was mostly a small outpost town, and even after Bolivia gained its independence in 1825 there was little attention from the authorities or the population in general to settle the region. It was not until after World War II and profound agrarian and land reforms that the city began to grow at a very fast pace.
Nowadays the city is Bolivia's most populous, and the Department of Santa Cruz, ranked second in total population, produces nearly 35% of Bolivia's gross domestic product, and receives over 40% of all foreign direct investment in the country. This has helped make Santa Cruz the most important business center in Bolivia and the preferred destination of migrants from all over the country.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: History
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Pre-Columbian era
Like much of the history of the people of the region, the history of the area prior to the arrival of European explorers is not well documented, mostly because of the somewhat nomadic nature and the absence of a written language in the culture of the local tribes. However, recent data suggests that the current location of the city of Santa Cruz was inhabited by an Arawak tribe that later came to be known by the Spanish as Chané. Remains of ceramics and weapons have been found in the area, leading researchers to believe they had established settlements in the area. Among the few known facts of these tribes, according to accounts of the first Spanish explorers that came into contact with the Chané, are that they had a formal leader, a cacique, called Grigota for several years but his reign came to an end after one of the several Guarani (Chirigano) incursions in the area.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Early European incursions and founding of the city
The adelantado grants of Charles V prior to the establishment of the Viceroyalty of Peru.
The first Europeans to set foot in the area were Spanish conquistadores from the recently created Governorate of New Andalusia that encompassed the territories of present-day Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Chile and Bolivia.
In 1549, Captain General Domingo Martinez de Irala became the first Spaniard to explore the region, but it was not until 1558 that Ñuflo de Chaves, who had arrived in Asuncion in 1541 with Alvar Nuñez/Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, led a new expedition with the objective of settling the region. After discovering that a new expedition from Asuncion was already underway, he quickly traveled to Lima and successfully persuaded the Viceroy to create a new province and grant him the title of governor on February 15, 1560. Upon returning from Lima, Chaves founded the city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra (Holy Cross of the Hills) on February 26, 1561, 220 km (137 mi) east of its present-day location, to function as the capital of the newly formed province of Moxos and Chaves. The settlement was named after Chaves’s home town in Extremadura, where he grew up before venturing to America.
Shortly after the founding, attacks from local tribes became commonplace and Ñuflo de Chaves was killed in 1568 by Itatine natives. After Chaves’s death, the conflicts with the local population as well as power struggles in the settlement forced the authorities in Peru to order the new governor, Lorenzo Suarez de Figueroa to relocate the city to the west. Many of the inhabitants, however, chose to stay behind and continued living in the original location. On September 13, 1590 the city was officially moved to the banks of the Guapay Empero river and renamed San Lorenzo de la Frontera. Nevertheless, the conditions proved to be even more severe at the new location forcing the settlers to relocate once again on May 21, 1595. Although this was the final relocation of the city, the name San Lorenzo continued to be used until the early 17th century, when the settlers who remained behind in Santa Cruz de la Sierra were convinced by the colonial authorities to move to San Lorenzo. After they moved the city was finally consolidated in 1622 and took its original name of Santa Cruz de la Sierra given by Ñuflo de Chaves over 60 years before. Remnants of the original settlement can be visited in Santa Cruz la Vieja ("Old Santa Cruz"), an archeological site south of San José de Chiquitos.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Colonial Santa Cruz and revolutionary war
Over the next 200 years, several tribes were either incorporated under Spanish control or defeated by force. The city also became an important staging point for Jesuit Missions to Chiquitos and Moxos, leading to the conversion of thousands of Guaranies, Moxeños, Chiquitanos, Guarayos and Chiriguanos that eventually became part of the racially mixed population of the modern Santa Cruz, Beni, Pando and Tarija departaments of Bolivia. Another important role the small town played in the region for the Spanish Empire was to contain the incursions of Portuguese Bandeirantes, many of which were repelled by the use of force over the years. The efforts for consolidating the borders of the Empire were not overlooked by the authorities in Lima, who granted the province a great degree of autonomy. The province was ruled by a Captain General based in Santa Cruz, and, in turn, the city government was administered by two mayors and a council of four people. Citizens of Santa Cruz were exempt from all imperial taxes and the mita system used in the rest of the Viceroyalty of Peru was not practiced. However, in spite of its strategic importance, the city did not grow much in colonial times. Most of the economic activity was centered in the mining centers of the west and the main source of income of the city was agriculture.
Animosity towards imperial authorities began at the turn of the 18th century, when the new system of intendencias reached the new world. The seat of government was taken away from the city and moved to Cochabamba, and many of the powers delegated by the viceroyalty were now in the hands of appointees of the crown. Like in many parts of Spanish America at the time, angered by the reforms the criollos saw as a threat to their way of life, and taking advantage of the Peninsular War, the local population, led by Antonio Vicente Seonane, revolted on September 24, 1810, overthrowing the governor delegate. A junta of local commanders took control of the government in his place. The revolutionaries, as it was the case with most of the revolts in Spanish America, remained loyal to the King of Spain, while repudiating the colonial authorities until after the end of the Peninsular War.
By 1813 the city was once again under imperial control. At this time, by order of General Manuel Belgrano, the revolutionary armies of Argentina sent a small force led by Ignacio Warnes to "liberate" Santa Cruz. After his successful campaign he assumed control of the government of the city. In a little over a year Warnes was able to gather tremendous support from the population, enlisting criollos, mestizos and natives to the revolutionary army, and allying with the revolutionary leader of Vallegrande, Alvarez de Arenales, to defeat a strong imperial force in the Battle of Florida. This victory proved to be a serious blow to Spanish forces in the region. Nevertheless, two years after the victory of Florida, imperial forces launched a new offensive in the province led by Francisco Javier Aguilera. This campaign ended with the defeat and death of Ignacio Warnes and his forces in the Battle of Pari. Triumphant, Aguilera marched into the city with orders to quell the insurrection and reinstate the Spanish governor. This proved to be a very difficult task, with several revolutionary leaders, such as Jose Manuel "Cañoto" Baca and Jose Manuel Mercado, rising up in the coming years from the city itself and elsewhere in the province. These new leaders fought colonial authorities for seven years until they finally deposed the last Spanish governor, Manuel Fernando Aramburu, in February 1825 after news of the defeat of the imperial armies in the west had reached the city.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Geography
Santa Cruz, seen from the International Space Station
The city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra is located in the eastern part of Bolivia (17°45', South, 63°14', West) at 416 m above sea level. It is part of the province of Andrés Ibáñez and the capital of the department of Santa Cruz. The city of Santa Cruz is located not far from the easternmost extent of the Andes Mountains and they are visible from some parts of the city.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Climate
The city has a tropical savanna climate (Köppen: Aw), with an average annual temperature around 23 °C (73 °F). Although the weather is generally warm all year round, cold winds called "surazos" can blow in occasionally (particularly in the winter) from the Argentine pampas making the temperature drop considerably. The months of greatest rainfall are December and January. The average annual rainfall is 1,321 mm (52 in).
Climate data for Santa Cruz de la Sierra
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Source: Deutscher Wetterdienst
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Demographics
The first settlers of Santa Cruz were mainly the Native Chane people of East Bolivia followed by the Spaniards that accompanied Ñuflo de Chávez, as well as Guarani natives from Paraguay, and Flemings, Portuguese, Germans and Italians working for the Spanish crown.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Government and infrastructure
The Centro de Rehabilitación Santa Cruz "Palmasola" is a prison located in Santa Cruz.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Culture and food
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Museums, Cultural Centers and Galleries
Santa Cruz offers an interesting circuit of cultural and art spaces, from natural history, to religious art up to the newest contemporary art. There is a young art market which is growing fast.
Southern Santa Cruz Skyline
Casa de la Cultura Raul Otero Reiche
Noel Kempff Mercado Natural History Museum
Teniente General German Busch Becerra National History Museum
National and Regional Museum and Archive
Cathedral Museum of Sacred Art
Museum of Art and Archaeology
Museum of Independence
Concert in Manzana Cero.
Museum of Contemporary Art
Manzana Uno (art center)
Cultural Center Santa Cruz
Cultural Center Simon I. Patiño
Training Centre of the Spanish Cooperation
Feliciana Rodriguez Cultural Center
Franco German Cultural Center
Art Gallery Axioma
Gallery Bhuo Blanco
Basílica Menor de San Lorenzo
The city of Santa Cruz has benefited from a fast-growing economy for the last 15 years. Despite its rapid growth the city preserves much of its traditions and culture. This is particularly reflected in its typical foods.
The Spaniards introduced cows, poultry, rice, citrus fruits (oranges, tangerines and lemons), from southern Asia they brought sugar cane and from Africa plantains, bananas and coffee (which is cultivated in the yungas near Buena Vista. Moreover, local dishes include native vegetables such as corn, peanuts, yuca and squash, and also local fish such as surubi and pacu.
Native spices such as urucum, and native fruits (unique to the region) such as achachairu, guapuru and guabira, add to the uniqueness of Santa Cruz rich traditional cuisine.The agricultural richness of the region allows Santa Cruz to enjoy a vast variety of flavours and ingredients. The following is a list which describes the most typical foods:
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Gastronomy
Lomas de Arena
Majao or Majadito (a risotto-style plate with charque, duck, or chicken meat. Served in two variations: majadito tostado or majadito batido)
Locro (a rice and hen soup with potatoes, onion, garlic, and oregano. It's common to use chicken instead of hen, and it is eaten with a piece of boiled yuca)
Pipian (peanut butter chicken, served with rice and cassa)
Rapi al jugo
Masaco (smashed plantain with charque. Also made with yuca)
Patasca (a corn and pork soup, served with cooked yuca and chopped green onions)
Churrasco or Parrillada (served with arroz con queso, cooked or fried yuca, chorizo, and salad)
Somó (white corn-based drink, served cold)
Chicha (sweet non-alcoholic drink made with corn and cinnamon)
Cuñapé (yuca and cheese baked in small buns)
Cuñapé Duro (bizcocho)
Sonso (yuca and cheese, boiled and mixed, and then oven baked or grilled)
Tamal al Horno
Tamal a la olla
Empanada de arroz
Empanada de queso
Empanada de jigote
Empanada de carne
Empanada de pollo
Empanada de maiz
Empanada de charque
Rosca de maiz
Pan de arroz
Bizcocho de trigo
Masaco de plátano (banana mixed with charque or meat)
Masaco de yuca (yuca mixed with charque or meat)
Masaco de queso (cheese mixed with banana or meat)
Pastel de choclo (corn)
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Economy
The city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra has utility infrastructure, roads and highways, and lively shopping and business. The main sectors that drive the economy are oil, forestry companies, agribusiness, and construction. Santa Cruz contributes more than 80% of national agricultural production, and also has contributed over 35% of GDP in recent years. It also has the country's largest airport, making it an ideal city for trade shows, international events and investments.
It is noteworthy that in Santa Cruz there is considerable investment in the construction sector (office buildings and houses), business (large supermarket chains and mass consumption centers), the health sector (high-tech private clinics), the fashion industry, national and international shows, agribusiness, hospitality and cuisine (highly developed), not to mention many private universities. The airline AeroSur had its headquarters in Santa Cruz. The airline ceased operations in May 2012 and has been replaced by Boliviana de Aviación, which flies from Santa Cruz to Madrid, Buenos Aires and São Paulo.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Hotels
Santa Cruz de la Sierra has one of the best hotel infrastructures in the country. Some of the hotels in the city include Los Tajibos Hotel, Hotel Toborochi, Hotel Buganvillas and Hotel Camino Real.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Twin towns – Sister cities
Santa Cruz de la Sierra is twinned with:
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: References
"National Statistics Institute. Population Projections by Department and Municipality". INE. Retrieved 2017-03-02.
"National Statistics Institute. General Population Estimates". www.ine.gob.bo. Retrieved 2011-09-08.
"World's fastest growing urban areas (1)". City Mayors. Retrieved 2012-04-10.
"The Contributions of Santa Cruz to Bolivia (Spanish only)" (PDF). CAINCO. 2008.
Nino Gandarilla (1995). Santa Cruz en los umbrales del desarrollo (PDF). Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Proyecciones RRPP. p. 41.
 Fundación de Santa Cruz de la Sierra: una historia épica del Siglo XV, El Mundo, 09/11/2011
Nino Gandarilla (1995). Santa Cruz en los umbrales del desarrollo (PDF). Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Proyecciones RRPP. p. 46.
"Klimatafel von Santa Cruz, Prov. Santa Cruz de la Sierra / Bolivien" (PDF). Baseline climate means (1961-1990) from stations all over the world (in German). Deutscher Wetterdienst. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
Al Margen de mis Lecturas, by Marcelo Terceros Banzer. Published September 1998
Meilhan, Pierre. "Dozens killed in Bolivia prison fire, brawl." CNN. August 24, 2013. Retrieved on August 24, 2013.
"Contact Information." AeroSur. Retrieved on February 27, 2010.
"Edinburgh – Twin and Partner Cities". 2008 The City of Edinburgh Council, City Chambers, High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1YJ Scotland. Archived from the original on 28 March 2008. Retrieved 21 December 2008.
"Twin and Partner Cities". City of Edinburgh Council. Retrieved 16 January 2009.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: Further reading
Gutsch, Jochen-Martin, "Im Labyrinth der Unordnung" Der Spiegel 5 December 2005, pp. 144–50.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra: External links
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Santa Cruz, Bolivia.
Santa Cruz de la Sierra travel guide from Wikivoyage
Official city government site
"Santa Cruz de la Sierra". New International Encyclopedia. 1905.
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