Salar de Uyuni: The place where earth meets heaven

Salar de Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat in the plateau of Bolivia. The mirror effect seems like the sky is hugging the earth most beautifully. In 2023, it is probably the most eccentric tourist destination so far.

Uyuni Salt Flat, Spanish Salar de Uyuni, arid, windswept salt flat in southwestern Bolivia. It lies on the Altiplano, at 11,995 feet (3,656 meters) above sea level. The Uyuni Salt Flat is Bolivia’s largest salt-encrusted waste area (about 4,085 square miles [10,582 square km]). It separates the Coipasa Salt Flat, a similar but smaller feature to the north, by a range of hills.

On its shores are saltworks at Salinas de Garci Mendoza on the north, Llica on the northwest, and Calcha on the south. Vast reserves of untapped lithium lie beneath the salt flat. And in the early 21st century the Bolivian government discussed options and feasibility for its extraction and production.

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The standard tour heads south toward the southwest corner of Bolivia. Many fluorescent-colored lakes that create from a collection of different minerals from runoff from the surrounding mountains. At times salt flat covers in very clear water, making it the largest natural mirror in the world. An estimated 11 billion tons of salt believes to be within Salar de Uyuni.

Salient features of lake

NASA uses this place to figure out the positioning of its satellites. There are 80 species of birds, including three species of flamingos. The common belief was that World’s largest natural mirror was completely flat. But later some small undulations found on the surface.

The most popular jumping-off point for salt flats tours. Uyuni is a small, dusty town packed with tourism agencies in Plaza Arce, its main square. Travelers can book tours in advance online, through tour offices in La Paz. Or they can simply arrive in Uyuni and peruse the options in town. Since Uyuni is so close to the salt flats, tourists can easily book day trips. Flights from La Paz to Uyuni can be booked through Amaszonas and BoA (one hour, about $130 round-trip). Overnight buses from La Paz are available with Trans Omar and Todo Turismo (10-12 hours, $30 to $40 each way).

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