IN THE HEART OF LA RINCONADA

Discover this unique city in the world

La Rinconada in Peru is the highest city in the world with more than 50,000 inhabitants living between 5100 and 5300 m above sea level. This city gathered around the activity of a gold mine is hung on the side of the mountain under the glaciers and imposes extreme living conditions on its inhabitants. The presence of doctors is rare, most of the inhabitants have never seen one and do not benefit from any follow-up of their health even though their living conditions are particularly difficult. No scientific research has ever been organized in this city or in any permanent place of residence so high.
La Rinconada. Tom BOUYER - EXPEDITION 5300
Rinconada Central Square
© Tom BOUYER - Expedition 5300
Samuel VERGÈS en pleine discussion avec des mineurs.
©Axel PITTET - Expédition 5300
La Rinconada, what is it? South America and the Andes Cordillera are one of the main permanent places of habitation in high altitude on our planet. Some cities in South America are located around 3500-4000 m (La Paz, Cerro de Pasco) and have been the subject of some scientific studies that have indicated in particular certain physiological characteristics developed by these populations over the millennia that probably allow them to tolerate oxygen deficiency more effectively than individuals in the plains. The city of La Rinconada in Peru with more than 50,000 inhabitants living at more than 5000m, is truly uniqueby the extreme altitude level to which its inhabitants are exposed.

Whilst it is generally considered that permanent human life is not possible beyond 5000 m, the population of La Rinconada constitutes a real challenge to knowledge about the adaptations of the human organism to its environment and in particular to hypoxia. The inhabitants of Rinconada live permanently, are born, grow, grow, work, age at a higher altitude than that of Mont Blanc where climbers often cannot easily reach and tolerate.

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