Rising stoically from the center of Plaza Murillo, the neo-classical La Paz Cathedral brings a historic, colonial flare to the bustle of modern day La Paz. When the old cathedral which once stood in its place was commissioned to be torn down in 1831, grand plans were made for erecting a cathedral which would soar to heights unsurpassed by the previous. The only problem, however, was that this ended up taking a little longer than most had planned.
With the first stones laid in 1835, the Cathedral - officially known as the Metropolitan Cathedral of Our Lady of La Paz - was never fully completed until 1989 when a mad scramble was set in place to finish the edifice for the impending visit of Pope John Paul II.
Nevertheless, under the designs set forth by the original architect, Manuel Sanahuja, the now-completed La Paz Cathedral features soaring blue domes, five naves and vaulted ceilings inside the building which still house scores of devout Catholic worshipers.
Those wishing to visit La Paz Cathedral can do so on weekday afternoons from 3:30pm-7pm, or at any time during the weekend when hours stretch from dawn until dusk. While inside, be sure to check out the Museum of Religious Art located downstairs in a small crypt, which is also accessible from a side street, should the main entrance to the cathedral be closed.