La Paz - (Uyuni Salt Flats) - Potosi (Arrival with classic night bus - Departure with midmorning bus)
Day 1: La Paz – Uyuni
At 17h30 you are transferred from your hotel (La Paz centre) to the bus terminal in La Paz. The bus station is famous because it was built by Gustave Eiffel (Eiffel Tower in Paris, France) and used to be the railway station of La Paz. At 19h00 we start our journey to Uyuni and our route takes us first to Oruro from where we descend through Challapata where the asphalt gives way to dirt tracks. If the first 350km/218mi seemed easy, some of Bolivia’s worst roads lie ahead of us; holes, mud, river crossings, cold and detours. Finally after this adventure we arrive in Uyuni around 07h00 where you have time for breakfast before the tour starts.
Day 2: Uyuni – Colchani – Salar de Uyuni (Uyuni Salt Flats) – Incahuasi – Coquesa
We start our journey from Uyuni around 10h30 in the morning and our first stop will be the locomotive cemetery which is a vestige of more prosperous times. From here we continue to Colchani which is a small village situated on the edge of the Salar and who’s inhabitants live from salt exploitation. In Colchani we discover how the salt is processed manually and we visit the small salt boutique, which also serves as a museum, where we can see large salt carvings and other objects (pottery, jewellery, tools, etc.). After this impressive visit with the craftsmen on the top of the world we enter the famous Salar de Uyuni (Uyuni Salt Flats) ; the biggest salt desert in the world with acreage of 10.582km²/4.086mi2. One of the particularities of the Uyuni Salt Flats is that it contains a reserve of 9 million tonnes of Lithium which represents 40% of world production. We head to the Island Incahuasi which mistakenly is better known as the Fisherman’s Island. This geological formation is a remnant of petrified coral and is covered in giant cacti that can get up to 12m/39.37ft high. From the top of the island we have a wonderful 360° view of the Salar de Uyuni (Uyuni Salt Flats) . After lunch we continue to the north of the Salar to Coquesa at the foot of the Tunupa where we spend the night. L/D
Day 3: Coquesa – Tunupa – Uyuni
After breakfast we visit the archaeological centre of the Chullpares (graves) of Coquesa and its surroundings. We then continue to climb the Tunupa all the way to the viewpoint (you have the option to go by car) from where we have a panoramic view of the Salar de Uyuni (Uyuni Salt Flats) . On the way down we pass the “Bofedales” (altitude wetlands) in order to see the rose flamingos and we return to Uyuni. We arrive in Uyuni in the afternoon and the rest of the day is free. B/L
Day 4: Uyuni – Potosi
After breakfast we head to the bus station in order to take the bus to Potosi. We cross the beautiful landscape of the Cordillera de los Frailes. It basically consists of two parts; the western region is a volcanic field which dates back to the late Miocene and the eastern part, the so-called Maragua Syncline, which is much older, is a mountain range of sedimentary rock of Cretaceous-Paleocene origin in a north-south thrust. We arrive in Potosi after approx. 3 ½ hours and the rest of the day is free. B End of our services.