Sun & salt… Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni
It’s no surprise that the Salar de Uyuni is Bolivia’s main tourist attraction – the place is staggering. The world’s largest salt flat, the Salar de Uyuni is a prehistoric lake that, over the course of the passing millennia, went dry. What’s left is 11,000 square kilometres of blindingly white salt as far as the eye can see.
While there are certain spots on the Salar that are inundated with travellers taking kooky perspective shots, it’s not hard to escape the crowds. After all, you’re not exactly short on space – you can drive for miles and miles here in your 4×4 and see nothing but dazzling white salt and clear blue sky.
Our escape comes in the form of an iconic Airstream camper, sat on its own deserted patch of salt in the foothills of Thunupa volcano. Leaning against it are a pair of mountain bikes which we immediately take for a spin. We cycle towards the horizon, peddling and peddling but making no apparent progress. It’s only when we turn back to see a tiny camper in the distance that we finally begin to comprehend the sheer size of the Salar de Uyuni.
Airstreams on the reflective salt flats
Changing direction we head along the base of the volcano until finally, in the distance, we spot pink Andean flamingos delicately picking their way through the shimmering shallow waters. They prove to be our only company on the Salar de Uyuni – aside from our private chef, of course. When we return, we find a fire burning outside our camper van and a drinks tray filled with every possible tipple we could want to create our own cocktails before dinner.
As the sun begins to set, the sky erupts into a riot of colour – blues, pinks, oranges and purples collide in a sight that would put any Monet or Turner sunset to shame. We sit admiring it, drinks in hand, as our chef serves us canapés warm from the oven – a taste of the mouth-watering three-course meal to come. As the sun drops, so does the temperature, so we huddle under the blankets by the fire for some stargazing. The night sky is perfectly clear, making for a ridiculously romantic setting. And the only people we had to share it with? Each other. It was utter perfection.
The Milky Way
Upgrade to the Airstream camper on Cox & Kings’ private Bolivia Explorer tour or as part of any tailor-made holiday to Bolivia. To find out more, speak to one of our Latin America travel specialists or complete our tailor-made request form and one of our experts will get back to you to help you plan an itinerary.