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South America Destination Guide

Salar de Uyuni

Uyuni

Uyuni

The Salar de Uyuni is one of the largest tourist attractions in the country, outside of the main Bolivia cities, such as La Paz, Potosi, and Sucre. This middle of nowhere community thrives on tourists coming to visit the astounding surrounding salares. It has few attractions but is the starting point for trips to the world's largest salt flats, Salar de Uyuni and Bolivias southern Altiplano.Located at the southern end of the internally-drained Altiplano,Salar de Uyuni is estimated to contain 10 billion tons of salt of which less than 25,000 tons is extracted annually.The largest town in the region, otherworldly Uyuni can be cold, windy and wet. The town itself has but two notable sights: the Cementerio de Trenes and the museum.Driving across it is one of the weirdest and most fantastic experiences anywhere on the continent, when the bright blue skies contrast with the blinding-white salt crust. It is also a significant tourist destination: highlights include a salt hotel and several so-called islands.Also the breeding grounds for three breeds of South American flamingos - Chilean, James's and Andean.Uyuni serves as the tourist headquarters to handle the non-stop flow of gringo traffic through the region, though most gringos are shipped in and out of the area within a 3-4 day period.Uyuni has the food markets, the narrow streets filled with street vendors, the shoe-shine boys, and the 6-year old girls selling hand sewn finger puppets.

Top Attractions

Laguna Colorada
Sol de Manana
Termas de Polques
Laguna Verde

Hotels

Tonito Hotel, Ferroviaria 60, Uyuni, 591 2 (693 3186)
Hotel Avenida
Hostal Europa
Recidencial Sucre
Hostal Marith
Residencial San Cayetano
Hostal Urkupina
Hotel Kutimuy
Hostal La Magia de Uyuni
Residencial Copacabana

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