The Salt Flats in Bolivia

The remains of an ancient lake that dried up thousands of years ago, Salar de Uyuni, is a whopping 12,000-sq.-km of shimmering reflections, surreal rock formations and cacti-studded islands stranded in a sea of salt crystals. Its mesmerizing landscape has captured the imagination of thousands of photographers; the never-ending flat, reflective desert-scape acts like a giant mirror to its surroundings, offering an endless play with perspective. Although conditions here are hard for wildlife to prosper, the Salt Flats are home to thousands of pink flamingos, which, contrasted with the bright white expanse of the salt desert, makes for a stunning sight. Traversing this wild landscape between the Atacama Desert and the Uyuni salt flats is an epic road trip around volcanoes, teal lakes, hot springs, bubbling mud pools, flamingo-filled lagoons, and a shimmering sea of salt crystals. The raw, wild beauty of this place makes it, without doubt, one of the most awe-inspiring locations in South America and our planet.

Getting There

You should fly int Captain Aníbal Arab Airport, which is the closest to the flats, and welcomes in planes from all over the world. You will then get onto another flight from into Uyuni’s smaller airport for quick travel access to the salt flats. You can get great deals from New York City, Los Angeles, Honolulu, Las Vegas, San Francisco and Chicago. You are free to choose whatever travel is best for you. Grab public transport by bus, private transport by 4WD, or sign up for dedicated tour programs who will meet you at the airport. As this is such a remote part of the world where conditions can be tough without the proper vehicle or equipment, a guide or tour is necessary to visit the Salt Flats. The resident of Australia can fly via Egypt, Johannesburg, Cape Town, Kenya, Morocco, South Africa or Zimbabwe. The most popular starting point for tours is the small town of Uyuni, which is accessible via a regular bus service from La Paz, Bolivia’s capital city.

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