Formed thousands of years ago, when several prehistoric lakes transformed and dried-out to form the world’s largest Salt Lake, Salar de Uyuni is one of the Bolivia’s most popular attractions.
Listed as one of South America’s Seven Natural Wonders, Salar de Uyuni is quite unlike anywhere else in the world, and once you have witnessed this huge 10,582 square kilometres Salt Lake for yourself, you’ll understand why thousands of international travellers make their way to this magical landscape year after year.
If you are thinking of travelling in South America next year, Salar de Uyuni should most definitely be on your Bucket List, and here’s why…
- Amazing Photography
Whether you are a professional photographer or a selfie superstar, Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni will provide the perfect backdrop for your next photo shoot. During the dry season, the pure white lake against the clear blue sky allows you to take the best perspective pictures. When the rainy season arrives, Salar de Uyuni transforms into the world’s largest mirror, so you can really push the boundaries of creativity.
- It’s Affordable
While Bolivia is nowhere near as cheap to visit as it was some 10 years ago, it is still a great value destination for international travellers. Salar de Uyuni is remote, but it is easily accessible. There are daily flights from La Paz for around $150 USD per person, and nightly buses (10 – 12 hours) for around $20 USD per person.
- Stay in a Hotel made of Salt
Salar de Uyuni is perhaps the only place in the world when you can stay in a hotel made entirely of salt. The Luna Salada Hotel, situated on the banks of the Salt Lake, is one such property, offering excellent accommodations and a cosy restaurant with the most amazing views.
If you are planning on trekking the world-famous Inca Trail to Machu Picchu during your trip to South America, Salar de Uyuni, at 3.656m above sea level, is a great place to acclimatise for your trek, and there are good flight connections Uyuni / La Paz / Cusco.
- It Combines Perfectly with San Pedro de Atacama
If, like most travellers, you intend to visit more than one country during your trip to South America, you’ll be pleased to know that Salar de Uyuni can be easily combined with San Pedro de Atacama in Chile. Many travel companies offer 3 day trips including tours, accommodations and meals, but if you’d rather do things independently, you can. Buses depart daily from Uyuni to San Pedro, and tickets cost less than $20 USD per person.
- Incahuasi Island
Holding prime position in the middle of Salar de Uyuni, Incahuasi Island is a rocky outcrop of land covered in gigantic cacti Trichocereus Pasacana. A beautiful sight, it is almost like a mirage in the middle of a salt sea, and while it can get very busy with other travellers, it is definitely worth a visit.
- Climb a Volcano
Salar de Uyuni is surrounded by Volcanoes, some of which you can climb during your visit. Tunupa is perhaps the most famous, but there are at least 5 others to choose from. You do need a guide, so best to book before you go.
- Visit Mummies
It may seem slightly sinister, but there is lots of history surrounding Salar de Uyuni, and in the foothills of the Tunupa Volcano in the village of Coquesa, one can view what are believed to be the mummies of Incas.
- Visit Nearby Lakes
Think white salt, red water, blue skies, and pink flamingos! There are some breathtaking lakes surrounding Salar de Uyuni, such as Laguna Colorada, and most local tour operators offer day trips.
- Magical Sunsets
Most sunsets are beautiful, but those in Salar de Uyuni are simply out of this world. If you only need one reason to visit Salar de Uyuni, this should be it!