After spending a week in different Bolivian cities that, in our opinion, didn’t have too much to offer, it was finally time for our next big nature experience! Salar de Uyuni, in the middle of the Andes in south Bolivia, is the world’s largest salt flat. It’s the legacy of a prehistoric lake, formed millions of years ago when the South American continent rose from the ocean, that went dry. With 11000 sq km landscape of bright white salt surface, cactus desserts, volcanoes and lagoons with flamingos, we set off in 4×4 jeeps for a three day adventure into Salar de Uyuni. And WOW what a place!! Its apparently a tradition amongst tourists to take goofy pictures with the white ground and blue sky (I mean, what else can you do in a salt dessert). Well, we didn’t want to be any worse!
The team we traveled with for five weeks, all balancing on a thread! Crazy happy to have reached this beautiful place! Getting eaten by a giant! Getting squashed by a giant! Mini-minna and victorious Viktor. Chilling with our Swedish friend Elsa.
Those reflections burnt our faces really bad… But from left we have Swede, Swede, Swede, Singaporean, Canadian, American/German, German, Brazilian, Swiss, Swiss and Australian!
What’s also left behind are coral caves and formations, which the Coquesa people used as churchyards for their mummies. It was certainly a unique, and creepy, experience to be in the quiet dessert with skeletons right in front of you, laying there for hundreds of years. We could have touched them if we wanted, but decided to play it safe and leave the bones alone…
First lodge out in the desert. Owned by a local community and supported by G-adventure. Skeleton caves. This is the typical position the corpses had when found. Impressive some of them still do after hundreds of years…The famous Uyuni railway that carried mining materials across the country. This funny vegetation looks soft but is almost as hard as a rock.
Most of our time were spent travelling in the jeeps, looking out on the surrounding beautiful mountainsides and dessert, with the occasional flock of llamas (domestic) or vicuñas (wild “cousin” of llama) passing by. We stopped at several lagoons of different colour and admired the flamingos that lived there, munching away on nutrient rich algae. We, on the other hand, had a nice bath in warm springs instead at 4000m above sea level.
So thankful to have the chance to experience another of the world’s great wonders! Now it’s time to leave the roughness of Bolivia and encounter the short week that is left at this continent.
Found flamingos at over 4000 m above sea level!
A Vizcacha warming up in the sun. Minna feeding the wild vizcacha with some coconut. The famous stone tree, formed by erosions. Viktor at the red lake. At night, the temperature drops so severely that the water freezes and the flamingos get stuck, having to wait for the sun rise which then melts the ice again. Sun sets and moon rise over the Andes.