Uyuni salt flats with hostels
REFERENCE PROGRAM 3D/2N Uyuni – Uyuni (Uyuni salt flats)
Uyuni salt flats Tour 3D/2N Uyuni – Uyuni (with basic accommodation). During the dry season the 1st night is in a salt hostel.
Day 1 (L, D)
We will leave Uyuni around 10.00 AM. First stop is the train cemetery where you can see the rusty old trains lined up. Next stop is at ´Colchani´ where we can observe the process of extracting the salt. From there we will ´enter´ the Uyuni salt flats and drive to ´Isla Pescado´ where we can see giant cactuses. The island is called Isla Pescado because it looks like a fish when you see it from a distance. It is the only sign of life for miles. We will have lunch here.
After lunch we will continue our trip to San Juan where we will spend the night in a hostel partially made of salt (only possible during the dry season).
Day 2 (B, L, D)
At 07.30 (right after breakfast) we will visit salar de Chiguana and the Ollague volcano which is semi active. Afterwards we will see some small lakes with different colours where we can observe flamingos. Lunch time! After lunch we will drive through the Siloli desert where we will find the tree made out of stone (Arbol de Piedra). Next stop is the spectacular Laguna Colorada (red coloured lake) where we can spot 3 different species of flamingos. After visiting Laguna Colorada we will continue our journey to Huayllajara where we will spend the night in a hostel. It can get cold at night!
Day 3 (B, L)
Today very early at around 05.30 am we will visit the geysers of Sol de Mañana and we can take a bath in the hot springs of Polques (the temperature of the water is approx. 30 degrees Celsius). After this relaxing bath we will have breakfast and we will continue our trip to the desert of Salvador Dali where we can enjoy the view of surreal landscapes. From there on we will go on to Laguna Verde, although Laguna Verde is not that green early in the morning. We are really close to the Chilean border now. People travelling onwards to San Pedro de Atacama (Chile) will take transport from here to San Pedro (around 10.00 AM but subject to change) by either public bus or private transport. The public bus will arrive in San Pedro around 11.00 / 11.30. The people returning to Uyuni will take the same way back with the addition of visiting the rock valley of San Cristobal with its picturesque colonial church. We will be back in Uyuni around 18.30.
IMPORTANT! Due to weather and road conditions the routes and hotel reservations can sometimes be changed without notice. This is the reason why the itinerary is only for reference, and is not to be taken as an exact itinerary of what this tour implies. Rain, snow, ice and strong winds for example can cause some parts of the route to temporarily become impassable and may oblige us to make changes in the itinerary. But take notice that if we have to make changes it is for your own safety. The surroundings of Uyuni are one of most isolated areas in the world.
Rainy season: the rainy season is roughly from January to April (subject to change). During this period parts of the Salar may be covered with water. This means that even though it will still be possible to do the trip and to visit the Salar with its beautiful lagoons, as well as the highlights of the trip, the water on the Salar may prevent us from being able to cross it for several hours like you would do during the dry season. You will therefore not be able to get to Isla Incahuasi / Fish Island. You can still visit the shores of the Uyuni salt flats though. With water on the Salar it is not possible to sleep in the salt hostel, we then use an alternative hostel.
When the Salar is covered with a little bit of water it also becomes one big mirror which is a beautiful setting for pictures. Many photographers even specifically visit the Salar during this rainy season in order to capture beautiful pictures. With too much water however the mirror-effect is gone. Needless to say we cannot predict whether or not it will rain before or during your trip, it’s up to Mother Nature.
- Overnight stay in hostels. During the dry season the 1st night is in a salt hostel. Take notice that the hostels do not always have heating or warm water. On the first night warm water is sometimes available at the price of $1 or $2 paid directly to the hostel’s owner.
- Transport in a 4X4 including oxygen bottle.
- Spanish speaking driver-guide.
Tours do not include:
- Entrance fees.
- Alcoholic drinks, personal snacks and tips.
- We can help you purchasing bus tickets to Sucre, Potosi or La Paz
- Hotel reservations in Uyuni after the tour has finished
- English speaking guide.
- Private transport to or from either Calama in Chile, or Sucre, Potosi and La Paz in Bolivia.
What we recommend you to take with you:
The route to the salt lake is cold, windy and with high solar radiation. During the day it is generally sunny and the weather is pleasant but it can get cold at night. Our recommendations on what to bring with you:
- Warm clothes.
- Hat that covers your ears and protects you from the sun.
- Warm boots (and / or rain boots during the rainy season)
- Swimming suit.
- Lip moisturizer.
- Sun block 30+.
- Sun glasses (the sun rays on the surface of the salt desert create a dazzling, blinding light. Therefore we highly recommend you to bring sunglasses with high protection).
- Raincoat (From December to March).
- Extra drinking water (we provide 2 liters of bottled water per person per day).
Note: Don’t forget to bring a copy of your passport.
Please contact us in advance so we can check availability in the hotels.
Apart from the basic tour as described above, we also offer a more upmarket tour on the Salar, with better hotels and private transport.
And a luxurious option: camping in style at Kachi lodge.
We also offer the following salt flats tours:
- Uyuni – San Pedro de Atacama
- San Pedro de Atacama – Uyuni
- San Pedro de Atacama – San Pedro de Atacama
- Tupiza – Uyuni
- San Pedro – Uyuni – Tupiza
- Tupiza – Uyuni – San Pedro
- Uyuni stargazing tour
- 1 Full day tour Uyuni – Uyuni
- 2 day tour Uyuni-Uyuni
Check our pages about:
More info about the salar tour? Check out the following travel blogs:
´Nos han gustado mucho los dos tours. Los chóferes y guías muy bien en ambos casos. Los hoteles nos gustaron mucho y todo ha salido muy bien. El Salar y Lagunas espectacular. En general muy bien todo. Muchas gracias!'
´Gijs, the trip to Uyuni was very good thanks. We were impressed with the overall package and would not hesitate to use your services again. Many Thanks.´
´Nos han gustado mucho los dos tours. Los chóferes y guías muy bien en ambos casos. Los hoteles nos gustaron mucho y todo ha salido muy bien. El Salar y Lagunas espectacular. En general muy bien todo. Muchas gracias!´
´It was absolutely fabolous! Excellent driver and guide! And transport to Chile! Loved all we saw! Thanks for organising the trip and for answering all my questions!´
´We had a wonderful trip for 3 days and the weather was nice apart from some snow and hail on the last day which made it kind of special. ´
´Hi Gijs, I just wanted to say that we had a wonderful trip. The organisation was perfect - thank you for sorting it all for us. Best regards, Mike´
´Dear Gijs, I just wanted to thank you for an incredible experience in the Salar of Uyuni earlier this year. The nature and the people were unforgettable. Ottavio was a great enthusiastic guide. It could not have been better. All the best from Germany, Chris´
´Dear Gijs, we would like to thank you for organising such a fantastic tour for us. We had an amazing time. Wilson was a great driver, very professional yet a lot of fun too. We had heard many stories of people having bad experiences so were a little wary about booking a tour. The food was great and the vehicle was very comfortable. If any of our friends head this way, we'll be passing on your details. Thanks again. Regards John and Paul´
´Dear Gijs, Thank you very much for following through with everything and making this part of our trip to South America go so smooothly. We have had several hassles with other bookings - people not turning up, or no name cards or wrong information etc. It is so refreshing to have everything go right. I shall have no hesitation in recommending you to any of our acquaintances. Regards, Carmen Wells´
- The Netherlands
´Gijs, de 3 daagse trip is prima bevallen. We waren heel blij met de omgekeerde volgorde. De eerste dag was best lang maar goed te doen. Onze chauffeur Freddy was helemaal goed. Vriendelijk en behulpzaam. En al kon hij bijna geen woord Engels hij deed erg z´n best on alles duidelijk te maken. Dat lukte ook vrij aardig. Wat we onderweg gezien hebben was top maar dat wis je natuurlijk al. Met name de laatste dag, het zoutmeer was indrukwekkend maar ook de lagunes en flamingo´s waren heel mooi om te zien. Van enige ontbering was geen sprake want de hotels waren prima. Ook hier eenvoudig maar goed. Ook het eten was prima. Onderweg en in de hotels. Je zult uit bovenstaand relaas begrijpen dat wij heel tevreden waren. Ook de prijs kwaliteitsverhouding vonden wij okay. Wel lekker dat we ons eigen tempo konden bepalen. Dus heel erg bedankt voor je dringende advies om naar Uyuni te gaan! Groeten, Suzanne en Kees'