Valle de la Luna, the Moon Valley, is located approximately 10 kilometers from the center of La Paz, in the province of Pedro Domingo Murillo, and got its name from the resemblance to the surface of the famous satellite of our planet Earth.
Over the centuries and millennia, the forces of nature have been shaping fantastic sculptures out of the valley's surface, creating pinnacled rocks, craters, mazes of canyons and even ice caves. Surreal landscapes of the Valle de la Luna are reminiscent of the lunar surface or of Salvador Dali's paintings. The mountains in the valley are composed of different types of rock, causing their color palette to change all the time. The transitions from one color to another are most incredible - from the usual greyish-brown to red and yellow, and even to dark blue and violet in some areas. Some compare the Moon Valley to a stalagmite-filled desert.
Neil Armstrong himself claimed that this bizarre alien-looking terrain truly resembles the surface of the Moon. Indeed, once there, you feel as if you have landed on a mysterious planet.
As is the case with other similar attractions, local tour guides like to compare fragments of rocky terrain with women's hats, praying monks and invent legends about the place. If you are traveling on your own, you have a great opportunity to investigate the depth of the valley by following the only loop trail among the rocky surface. The loop trail takes you around the entire valley, going up- and downhill, and lets you absorb the beauty of the bizarre rocks from different angles.
Besides its breathtaking and weird beauty, the Moon Valley is also remarkable by the fact that it serves as a venue for the Bolivian sacred holiday, Day of the Skulls (Día de los Natitas).