Chulumani Road (also known as South Yungas Road) is a dangerous mountain road that connects La Paz to Chulumani, in the Sud Yungas region in Bolivia.The road, with a length of 64 kilometres (40 mi) is considered to be so dangerous as the North Yungas Road.
Although it can be a reasonably easy drive in favourable conditions it also has the potential to be a very difficult track and at times impassable after wet weather.The road is quite narrow in many areas. If one encounters an oncoming vehicle while the road is narrow, there are certain rules to follow. First, the vehicle heading uphill has the right of way, as stopping and starting back up might be difficult on certain types of terrain. Also, if the road is wide enough for two vehicles to pass each other, the drivers must switch the cars' positions on the road, so the drivers can tell how far off the cliff or the mountain their respective vehicles cars are. It is very important to check rainfall in this area before setting off and make sure you are well prepared for the trip.
This infamous road is tightly hairpinned and bumped, an exquisite winding mountain drive with sharp and blind curves and hairpin switchbacks leading the traveler over the mountains. The road includes some steep sections, without market central lines, is very narrow, barely wide enough for 2 cars at the same time and it has not protections or guardrails. The road to the Sud Yungas branches east just beyond Unduavi . Though less nerve-wracking than the road to Coroico, this is nevertheless a scenically rewarding trip following the steep-sided valley of the Río Unduavi. The surface of the road is gravel and sand.
The road still remains an adrenaline-pumping journey and is definitely not for the faint of lungs, heart, or legs. A quick glance at the map, at its sheer drops and serpentine twists and turns, confirms that this is no hype. The drive is definitely worth it. Along the way is the beautiful Velo de la Novia (Bridal Veil), waterfall (views from the left side of the bus). The first settlement after Unduavi, Chaco, which is 1 km before the end of La Reconquistada Trail and home to Hotel El Castillo. Here are several hiking trails to waterfalls and a suspension bridge over the river. A few km further on is Florida, where a dirt road turns off to the right to the attractive colonial village of Yanacachi . The main road continues to Puente Villa and then 25 km further to Chulumani. Don’t forget your camera!
If you dare take the risk and travel along this dusty and bumpy route, then make sure to be driven by someone who has experience of the road. Staying on track here takes oodles of concentration. There's sheer drops virtually along the entire route and enough hairpins to make a whirling dervish dizzy. The road bad conditions, with extremely large pot holes could potentially pop a tire, crack a rim, or screw up your cars allignment.