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#195 – What is Soroche in Spanish?

Corporate Spanish Trainer

What is Soroche in Spanish?


High altitude sickness is common in areas of 7,000 feet and higher.
In Perú it’s called Soroche.






Post 195/365
Es sábado, 7 de octubre de 2017



Thanks for stopping by Spanish Blog 365. This is where we learn Spanish language and culture in about 10 minutes a day!


On Sundays we learn language by learning about a Spanish-speaking country. We’ve worked through Spain, the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America and have had a few weeks exploring the northern countries of South America. Last Sunday we looked at Ecuador. Tomorrow we’ll look at Peru.


In South America, the Andés is the mountain range that runs north and south through 7 countries: Chile, Argentina, Perú, Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia y Venezuela. The tallest point is in Argentina, Mount Aconcagua. It reaches up to 22,841 feet above sea level. there are approximately 70 mountains in the Andes that are 20,000 feet high or higher (up to 22,841). There are many more that are between 15,000 and 20,000ft.


These tall mountains bring lots of mountain climbers from around the world.


Many great travel points in south America are high altitude.



Cuzco, Perú – 11,152
Machu Picchu, Perú – 7,972
Lake Titicaca, Perú and Bolivia – 12,500
La Paz, Bolivia – 11,942, the airport, El Alto, sits at an elevation of 13,327
Quito, Ecuador – 9,350
Bogatá, Colombia – 8,661



If you live at sea level or a lower elevation you may experience Soroche while travelling to some of these locations. If you come to the mountains of Colorado and the west you might also experience Soroche, we call it high altitude sickness. The main difference is that we don’t serve you coca leaf tea.




High Altitude Sickness, known as Soroche en Perú



Soroche, también se llama mal de montaña o mal de altura.


Unos de los símtomas incluyen:


mareos – dizziness
cansancio físico – physical fatigue
dolor de cabeza – headache
nausea y vómitos 
no dormir bien – inability to sleep
cambios de ritmo cardiaco – changes in cardiac rhythm (más rápido)




Si vas a Perú y Cuzco, vas a ver que se sirve té de hoja de coca (coca leaf tea) en todos los cafes y restaurantes.
Tomar el té de hoja de coca puede aliviar un dolor de cabeza causado por el Soroche.



Otros consejos (advice) para aliviar los síntomas de Soroche.  Al llegar a un lugar que tiene una altura de 7,000 pies o más… On arriving at a place that is 7,000ft or higher…



-toma 24 horas para acostumbrarse de la altura – take 24hrs to get accustomed to the altitude
-toma mucha agua
-no consume alcohol ni tabaco
-descansa o camina un poco, pero no haga un ejercicio fuerte por 24 horas – rest or walk a little, but don’t do heavy exercise for 24 hours
-toma una taza de té de hoja de coca unas veces por día




¡Disfruta de su viaje! – Enjoy your travel!
Machu Picchu y los otros lugares de altura alta en los Andés son muy bonitos. Ahora sabes algo del Soroche, los síntomas y como aliviarlos. 




Action step: Explore more about Soroche. It not only affects travelers and climbers in South America, but also local workers who work in mines and other jobs.
Some of these jobs require the workers to do physical labor at 10,000, 15,000, or even 18,000 feet. Physiologists study these folks to note changes in their bodies and systems due to strenuous labor in a low oxygen environment day after day.


Come back again tomorrow to learn about Peru. Leave me a comment. Tell me if you’ve ever been to Peru and sipped coca leaf tea.


Gracias y hasta mañana,