Blogs from Salar de Uyuni, Potosí Department, Bolivia, South America - page 7

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Kid, the next time I say we go someplace like Bolivia,let's go someplace like Bolivia" A classic line from one of my favourite films, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. It was with some trepidation that I decided to book a round trip tour to the salt flats of Bolivi in a 4x4 vehicle from San Pedro. When I obtained my emergency passport I did not mention this country at the time and so it is not recorded as I country I intend now to visit. However I am assured by a very reputable tour company that I will be no problem crossing over and then back do I can then drop down to Iquique so continue north in chile. There are three reasons for going. First santiago is going and speaks Spanish so any communication ... read more
View to the mountains
Me at 4500 meters above sea level
Bolivia!


Sunday, March 25th, 2012 La Paz, Bolivia For our last day in La Paz - at least until our return flight - we checked out of our hotel and finished up some last minute sight-seeing before the Salt Flats. We browsed the markets, discovering both the Witch´s Market and Black Market. The Witch´s Market contained your usual ¨run of the mill¨handcrafts found in most other markets, but also had dried llama fetuses (just in case you were looking for some, go here). The Black Market - which pretty much looked like a Home Depot expoded- is the market containing goods smuggled from Chile. While we didn´t see any, our book noted that the occasional Bolivian law enforcement officer could be found shopping here as well. We opted on purchasing some super cheap, kitcsh, sunglasses and baby ... read more
Curtis & Jen in Uyuni
Newton
Einstein


20/3/12 We met our group at 7:45am in San Pedro and headed for the Bolivian border which was just an hour away. The Bolivian immigration office was at 4300m above sea level and absoluetly freezing. It was the strangest border crossing we have ever been to as it was a small hut in the middle of the desert, anyway our passports were stamped and we had breakfast with the group on our minibus. After breakfast we were split into groups of six and designated a 4x4 jeep and a driver for the rest of the tour. We were very lucky with our group as we had another English couple from London, an airhostess from Holland and a half Chilean plumber from Norway. Everyone was lovely and we all got on great, making our 3 day experience ... read more
Bolivian immigration office...
Our group
Hot springs


Taking the train instead of the bus from Oruro to Uyuni turned out to be a good decision. The ride was smooth, there was plenty of room for our legs and it even arrived on time! So, after getting out of the riot that was the bag return, we made our way to our pre-booked accommodation. Whilst actually in the town of Uyuni, we didn’t really have much planned. This was not because we were boring or lazy, but purely because there really isn’t anything to do in this town other than go book a Salt Flats tour, eat and drink and take stupid pictures of each other doing ridiculous poses….therefore, that’s precisely what we did! The tour that we booked out to the Salt Flats was to take 8 people total. This included both the ... read more
Trying to get this thing going....
She has me in the palm of her hands!!
Amazing sunset at our first nights stop off


We were picked up early from our hostel in San Pedro de Atacama armed with 10 litres of water and set off for our 3 day trip across Chile´s atacama Desert to Bolivias Salt Flats. There were 4 Jeeps in total on our trip with 6 eager tourists in each. We got lucky as our 4WD comprised of 3 couples, one from up north, one from Jersey, us and Felix our friendly (but strict) driver whom was very experienced and always sober which is exactly what you want when your driving through desert tracks and over mountains for 3 days. Our tour operator had informed us they would change our chiliean money into bolivian for the park entrance we need to pay and a bit extra for any bolivian souvenirs. Annoyingly on departure they said they ... read more
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Spectacular, awe inspiring, incredible, beautiful; these are just a few words that come to mind after just finishing a three day drive through the Andes for a second time. This time it was from San Pedro de Atacama, northern Chile to Uyuni, Bolivia by 4x4. No pavement, just dirt roads only fit for a 4x4. Specifically Toyota Landcruisers; looks like Toyota has wrapped up Bolivia from what I saw. To try describe the trip would not do it justice, so I'll let the pics paint most of the thousand words. But I know that even they can't capture what I saw and felt There were six of us and a driver in a Toyota landcruiser and we literally went up and over the Andes. Two great young Chilean couples, an Irishman and an excellent driver who ... read more
At the Bolivian border
I love these border outposts
Laguna Verde

South America » Bolivia » Potosí Department » Salar de Uyuni December 24th 2011

So after a couple of days in Sucre where I managed to meet up with Izzy and Siobhan and visit a local orphange I was off to Potosi. Potosi is the worlds highest city at 4070m and is famous for its silver mining history. The city was founded in 1545 following the discovery of silver in the Cerro Rico mountain. Today however the mountain has been drained of its most valuable minerals but is still heavily mined for lesser value minerals. Tourists can be taken into the working mines and watch the miners work as well as helping out with the dynamite explosions. Unfortuanltey I was really unwell with a bad cold where I arrived here and due to the conditions inside the mines was advised not to enter. Disappointing, but means there is something I ... read more
The World´s biggest Llama
At the salt mounds
Me on a bottle

South America » Bolivia » Potosí Department » Salar de Uyuni December 15th 2011

The tour through the Bolivian salt flats, the Salar de Uyuni was an experience like no other. In the three days it took us to go from Uyuni, Bolivia to San Pedro de Atacama, Chile we saw volcanoes, lagoons, deserts, salt flats, cacti and flamingos. We saw some of the most surreal landscapes and were at some of the most extreme points in South America. We started off by going to the Train Graveyard, the site of the first train lines in Bolivia, a place littered with the rusting remains of the British made steam engines. This odd sight in the middle of a desert landscape is where the train scenes from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid were filmed. From there we moved on to a small town which is founded on the gathering and ... read more


We decide as a group the night before that we would leave by 5:15AM at the latest so that we could catch the sunrise on the salt flats. For various reasons (it looked like the local guide/drivers overslept) we didn’t get going until 5:45AM. Fortunately we got to the salt flats just as the sun was rising. Formation of Salar de Uyuni (Uyuni salt flat): Scienific: This part of the Altiplano has no outlet to the sea. The salt deposits are the result of the minerals leeched from the mountains and deposited at the lowest available point. Legends(from LP): A rounded promontory juts into the Salar de Uyuni along its NW corner and on it rises Volcan Tunupa (5432m). One legend states that Atahualpa slashed the breast of a woman called Tunupa on its slopes and ... read more
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A group got its morning call at 4:30AM, probably heading to other direction to see the geysers in Sol de Manana. We had a leisurely breakfast and left at 7:30AM, to continue our drive to the salt flats. Not far from our accommodation we ran into the Brazilian guy with his jeep, having trouble starting it up. We happily stopped to help and got his jeep started. KARMA! We passed the much-photographed Arbol de Piedra (Stone Tree) in the Siloli Desert and some other lagoons dotted with flamingos. There were a few white flamingos. I was told that they were not from the region because they get their colours from what they eat. More trouble with the 4WD. Our vehicle had a gasoline smell which got worse over time, apparently related to a leaky gas tank. ... read more
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