Salt Flats

The small village of Uyuni is certainly stuck in time.
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Arrived around 8pm to immediately be greeted by tour companies haggling trips to the famous salt flats. We had been traveling with a Brazilian who helped us find the connection bus across town in Potosi, so we felt obligated to go with the same company he booked for the flats. We later found out we were charged double for the one day trip (150pesos per day is average) but everything was so cheap in Bolivia that we took it as an inexpensive lesson.

The air was extremely thin as our lungs were still trying to acclimate to the 15,000 feet elevations. Due to the high altitudes the climate dropped to freezing temperatures and our heads were swimming in nausea. We were able to find a nearby hostel and the best pizza in all of Bolivia, although the modest owner claimed it to be in Uyuni only.

Woke up early to walk about the six street town in search of warmer clothes. Perhaps it was the exchange rate of $1 to 7 Bolivian Pesos, but everything was significantly cheaper here. Found some warm mittens for $1.50 and watched the older Cholita mend the hole in less than 5 minutes while the other ran off for our change.

The SUV took 6 of us on a private tour across their salty plains, pausing at a cool abandoned train yard and even an oasis full of cacti. I was amazed by the height of the giant cactus scattered around this small island surrounded in a sea of salt. How did they even survive with all the salt?! It was certainly the largest salt flat in the world; nothing but white salt and mountains for miles.

After our outback adventure, we stopped for one more oven-fired pizza and left on another night bus toward the beautiful city of La Paz.

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