Sierra de la Laguna Biosphere Reserve
The Sierra de la Laguna Biosphere Reserve, located in the mountains south of La Paz, provides a rugged home for an incredible diversity of animal and plant life, with many of the species endemic. The southern tip of the peninsula, including the Sierra de la Laguna, was formerly an island, which explains the distinctive flora and fauna of the region. The Sierra de la Laguna has been declared a UNESCO Global Biosphere Reserve in recognition of its unique attributes, and is sparsely inhabited. The mountain lion is the largest predator in the reserve, but more commonly seen are the coyotes and foxes, as well as smaller mammals such as kangaroo rats, desert mule deer, gophers and badgers. This magnificent area attracts hikers, mountain bikers and naturalists and there are several well-known and popular hiking trails traversing the mountain range. It is an ecological treasure house where cacti, palms and pine trees grow side by side and picturesque rock pools form underneath towering granite boulders. The core of the reserve is dominated by oak-pine forests which are very scenic, although the dense vegetation can make it difficult to spot animals, but there are a variety of terrains to explore.