Losing perspective in Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

28 Jul

From San Pedro de Atacama it was off to the largest salt flats in the world…I know I am using a lot of superlatives in this trip but South America seems to have the biggest, driest, highest, highest navigable, highest of its kind….of everything…which is pretty cool.

I passed from Chile to Bolivia and here is the Bolivian border crossing….pretty simple huh?

Bolivian border crossing

Bolivian border crossing

The salt flats are utterly amazing.  The whole area used to be a lake called Lago Minchin which, when it dried up, left some water behind and salt pans.  They remove many tons of salt each year and underneath the salt pans is said to be the world’s biggest supply of lithium.  I asked some people why this has not been exploited to date and they said that the government was still deciding what to do with it.  The depth of the salt is over 100 metres which makes me feel safer having done a jeep tour over them.  The salt pans themselves are 12,000 kilometres square and how our driver found his way over them is amazing!!! He told us that sometimes they come to make new tracks in the salt…simply by driving over them a few times to make a new road…..I can get lost in a market..how can you navigate through 12,000 square kilometres with nothing to give you perspective. Wow wow wow!!!

En route to the salt flats are some pretty awesome lakes.

Laguna Blanca

Laguna Blanca

And some cool cairns….I love cairns…

Cairns

Cairns

And the best kind of tree….a stone tree….it never needs any water….

Stone tree at the Dali Rock Desert

Stone tree at the Dali Rock Desert

The night before we got to the salt flats themselves we stayed in a very cool hotel, all made of salt..if you needed salt for dinner you could simply pick it up off the floor..the only difficult thing was resisting licking things to see if they tasted of salt!!!!

And then it was off to the salt flats…..only word for these is WOW WOW WOW….all perspective is gone and you can do some pretty fun things with a camera and a little bit of imagination….

On a knife edge, Salar de Uyuni

On a knife edge, Salar de Uyuni

Man, this coffee is going to be expensive

Man, this coffee is going to be expensive

Who can I sue if I slip??

Who can I sue if I slip??

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10 Responses to “Losing perspective in Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia”

  1. Jenny B July 28, 2010 at 5:11 pm #

    WOW Ange- these pics are seriously amazin!! Looks SUCH good fun girl! soooooo jealous! 🙂 xxxxxx

    • angiemain July 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm #

      Oh Jenny you would have loved it and I know you would have had some magic props! I still think of you decorating your desk!!!!!! Come see me Jenny!!! Banter banter banter. Missing ya, Angexxxxxx

  2. Marco D. July 28, 2010 at 9:50 pm #

    Naah I think the coffee is gonna be pretty cheap 😉

    • angiemain July 28, 2010 at 11:49 pm #

      Yeah you are probably right but I only drink coffee while surrounded by police these days!!!! A

  3. Isobel Main July 30, 2010 at 9:03 pm #

    Do you have the Health and Safely authority for these amazing tricks. Edinburgh festival here you come. Mum

    • angiemain July 31, 2010 at 2:15 am #

      Hee hee! I know. Wasn’t I really a brave girl! Angexx

  4. Hostels Bolivia October 4, 2010 at 8:50 pm #

    Ahaha Awsome Pictures!!! I love it!
    I plan to visit the salar next year!! Do you have any tour and lodging to recommend?
    I’ve already found some hostels Bolivia on http://www.napopo.com but looking for one on the salar
    Cheers amigos 🙂

    • Nick October 4, 2010 at 8:52 pm #

      I recommend you the hostel built with salt right on the salar!

      • angiemain October 13, 2010 at 11:49 pm #

        I know! It is super cool (and not quite so cold as the first night on the Salar!) brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr…………..

    • angiemain October 13, 2010 at 11:52 pm #

      Hey! Thanks for your comment. It was amazing. Like space..though now I think of it never been there but it’s what I imagine it would be like! Someone gave me a top tip to find a tour…the Tourist Information in San Pedro de Atacama has a book in which people put their thoughts on their tour. These varied, of course,from “top tour” to some where the drivers got drunk and the folk had to drive across the Salar on their own!!!! This is a good way to find a company as it’s up to date and independent as, naturally, all of the companies will try to persuade you too go with them. The Tourist Info is just next to the cool church in San Pedro. I do hope this helps! Angie

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