town and municipality seat in Ñuflo de Chávez, Santa Cruz, Bolivia

San Javier is a town in the eastern Bolivia, Santa Cruz department.

Cross in San Javier main square.


San Javier is best known as one (the first) of the Jesuit Missions of the Chiquitos, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Chiquitania is hot - temperatures there reach 30 degrees of Celsius and above.

Get inEdit

There are some buses from Santa Cruz every day.

Get aroundEdit

By footEdit

San Javier is small enough to walk on foot.

By motoEdit

A lot of mototaxis are available.


San Javier main square.
  • The main square (A block north of the road from Santa Cruz). Is a perfect entry by itself into Chiquitania spirit with the cross at the center, lanterns, trees and pathways. It has trash bins, which are so rare in Chiquitania and Bolivia in general.
Inside the church of San Javier.
  • The church and the belltower (At the main square). Church facade in interior is beautiful - wood carvings combined with concrete castings.
  • The rock formation Piedra de los Apostoles (Three blocks east and a couple south of the main square). These rocks are huge.


  • Listen to a concert in the church. Once in two years there is the international baroque music festival, which seems to be the best. There is yearly Festivales de Temporada as well. Check the shedules to see, if you can catch one of these.
  • Listen to mini-concert of famous local Yaritu (pre-jesuit customs) band. Only possible, if you are a group of many. Look for a local guide Magno Cornelio, who can organize such a mini-concert. Bs730.
  • Go for a pleasing relax in Aguas Calientes (15 km north of town). A place with warm water (supposedly having curative properties) and exotic vegetation. You can swim, listen to ambient sounds, walk around, talk to locals and even camp there. Ask a mototaxi to bring you there, wait (1 h) and take you back (all for Bs50). Bs10.


  • You can find food and general goods in the marketplace.
  • Milk products, such as cheese and yogurt, of the local factory PEQ.
  • Traditional high quality local materials clothes, made by the women of cooperative Manos Chiquitanos. The prices are not high. Their workshop is near the marketplace.


  • Multiple cheap eateries at the marketplace (Two blocks east of the main square). Breakfast Bs15, dinner Bs25.



  • El Tiluchi (At the southeastern corner of the main square), +591 9635220. Neat place with friendly owners. Shared bathroom. Street noise (motorbikes - even at the midnight) may come as there is a room, where there was a door to the street before, which now is blocked (but not noise-insulated). Single Bs40.


Stay safeEdit

Think twice if you want to take a mototaxi out of town. There is nothing wrong with the people, but there is as much safety as the driver is experienced. The roads outside are rough, there are ups and downs. Driver may have a helmet, you won't. Motorbikes are the most popular means of communication, but a ride outside the town as a passenger may be challenging (at least for the first time).

Go nextEdit

If you want to continue with the missions clockwise, go to Concepción. Some busses daily from Santa Cruz stop at San Javier (the first being at 11:00, costs Bs4).

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