Exploring Bolivia´s Southwest: Salar de Uyuni!
We finally reached our goal. We woke up before dawn to admire the sunrise in the middle of the Salt Flat. The vast salt desert got tinted orange for a few minutes before letting place to a seemingly infinite white stretch of land.
We then went to one of the 24 islands in the middle of the Salar: the famous cactus island or Isla Incahuasi. Incahuasi means the house of the Inca because they used to use this island as a relay when they crossed the Salar by foot back in the days. This is by the way the only island that we can visit, the others being inaccessible by car. The island has no less than 3’000 cactus that can measure up to 12 meters of height! The show is surprising and stunning even though we had some overhead clouds blocking the view.
|Careful with your butt!|
The next step is the obligatory photo shooting session in the middle of the infinite whiteness of the Salar. They let us in the middle of a seemingly uninterrupted white stretch of land, which allow us to play with perspective in order to, take funny and creative pictures. We would spend no less than two hours there and it really seemed a very short time!
|The meat lacks some pepper I would say|
|What did you say?|
|Our guide David and our cook Gladys|
To end up with our tour in the Salar de Uyuni, we went to see the first salt hotel that is nowadays a museum. We then went to see the hundreds of salt monticules at the edge of the Salar. The extracted salt is deposited in little salt pyramids in order to dry up before being collected and processed. This gives rise to fantastic scenery!
The last stop of our four-day tour is the visit of the train cemetery. Right next to the town of Uyuni, which has absolutely no charm by the way, lays this famous train cemetery. Loads of abandoned wagons and locomotives are left there to withhold the damage of oxidation and the refinement of street artists.
|Back to school, boy!|
|And back to kindergarten!|
Finally, we arrive in Uyuni where we would take a bus to La Paz to take a connection to Copacabana, on the Titicaca Lake. The original plan was to take a transfer down to San Pedro de Atacama in Chile but we decided not to go there as the landscape are apparently quite similar to the ones in the Southwest of Bolivia that we just saw.