The salt of the earth

Trip Start Dec 08, 2004
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Trip End Dec 07, 2005


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Flag of Bolivia  ,
Monday, September 5, 2005

After a gorgeous train journey THROUGH bird infested lago Poopo and the desolate plains of south Bolivia it was time for us to understand the REAL meaning of COLD!!!. At 3675m the freezing cold Middle-of-nowhere town of Uyuni is the jump off point for tours to the Salares (salt plains)and its all up from here.
We booked a 4 day jeep tour along 4 others taking us through the salt plains, south to the lakes and guesers and then east across the mountains to Tupisa (the heart of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid country).

The first day we drove across the Salar de Uyuni, the largest salt flat in the world. It is truly spectactular - this perfectly flat brilliant white expanse bordered by outlines of mountains, an incedible sight. The tour took us to a tiny community in the salare where they process the salt for eating and sell novalty salt souvenires "dos heart shaped candle holders porvabor" :)
We then visited a hotel in the middle if the plain that is built entirely out of salt bricks. All the furiture apart from the loo is too (we had to check).

WARNING beware of cute children if you dont understand Spanish : Two japenese tourists were posing for photos with what looked like to the untrained ear very cute Bolivian children. As they were smiling and cuddling the children and giving them lollies the children were calling them fat ugly pigs with silly eyes. OOOPS

The last sight for that day was Isla de Pescado (Fish Island) a cactus studded island formed by a volcanoe in the middle of the salt flats. Apparently it looks like a fish, not sure at what angle you`d have to be standing at? Quite lovely though. The cactus are one of the tallest growing types, one of them is nearly 15m.

Again the pictures will speak louder and better than i could explain. The scenery and landscapes make you question whether you are still on earth.
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