Tarija Paleontological Museum: Bolivia for Kids

by Kricket

Recently I did a blog on the dinosaur tracks found in Sucre, Bolivia. Today I'm doing a blog also about prehistoric stuff and also about a place you can visit in Bolivia. This one is located in Tarija. I'll be telling you about:

The Tarija Paleontology Museum

The Tarija Paleontology Museum is called Museo Paleontológico y Arqueológico in Spanish. It is a museum in Tarija located one block down from the central plaza. Inside are fossils and artifacts dating back one million years ago. The building was constructed in 1941 and opened as the museum in 1959. Over the years, it has had many different uses other than a paleontology museum. There are two floors to the building. Lets examine them.

Bottom Floor

The bottom floor is full of paleontology stuff with 3 full-sized skeletons: one is a 9-foot high giant sloth (see photo of me above), and the other two are full-sized skeletons of a mammoth and giant armadillo. In fact, so many fossils and bones have been found in this region that most of them are kept in storage.

Top Floor

On the second floor there's a whole bunch of ancient pottery and spearheads and stuff left behind by our ancestors. There are two rooms on the second floor and each one will be explored separately.

First Room

In the first room are many glass cases full of ancient rocks and minerals. The area is called the mineralogy section, so if you're into looking at rocks and stuff (meh, not my thing but my mom, who makes gemstone jewelry, can spend hours in there).

Second Room

In the second room there are a whole bunch of ancient weapons, pottery, clothing and fabric, and even mummies. (Don't worry these ones don't have weird ancient tomb curses and stuff... or do they...) Here you can find out how people were buried. (Oddly enough, our ancestors managed to stuff their dead into clay pots. How? Don't ask).

And now you know a bit about the Tarija Paleontology Museum. Admission is free, but you will have to register and it's open all week, so visit it to your heart's content.

Fun fact: the 9-foot high giant sloth was discovered by a young boy. Guess what age he was?

Video source: https://youtu.be/uDxrzlT3xCs

Submitted 2015-05-13

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