Cordillera Central (Bolivia)


City of Potosí with Cerro Rico

The Cordillera Central is a high mountain range in the eastern Andean highlands of Bolivia.


The Cordillera Central ( " Central Mountain Range " ) extends in the central Bolivia over 1200 km in a north-south direction, Chaupi Orco in the north to Cerro Zapaleri in the south on the border of Chile and Argentina. It separates the Amazonian lowlands to the east of the plateau of the Altiplano in the west and is rich in mineral resources. It is divided into the Cordillera Septentrional in the north, the Cordillera Central in the middle and the Cordillera Meridional in the south.

Cordillera Septentrional

The Cordillera Septentrional ( Northern Cordilleras ) (also: Cordillea Real) extends north of Lake Titicaca to Oruro at Uru Uru Lake of the Peruvian border:

  • Cordillera Apolobamba
  • Cordillera Real ( Bolivia) ( also Cordillera de la Paz )
  • Cordillera Muñecas
  • Cordillera Quimsa Cruz
  • Serranía de Sicasica

Often the Cordillera Septentrional is rather associated with the Cordillera Oriental as the Cordillera Central.

Cordillera Central

The Cordillera Central in the narrower sense consists of two parallel mountain systems between Oruro and Potosí:

  • Cordillera Azanaques
  • Cordillera de Frailes

Cordillera Meridional

The Cordillera Meridional closes in the south from the Altiplano and performs the mountain range of the Cordillera Central in the running in the West Cordillera Occidental approach:

  • Cordillera de chichas
  • Cordillera de Lípez

Valley regions

Within the Cordillera Real can distinguish two characteristic valley regions:

  • The Valles at 2500-3500 m altitude
  • The Yungas between 1,000 and 2,000 m above sea level.