Salar de Uyuni

Salar de Uyuni


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Salar de Uyuni is a 12,000 km² (4680 sq miles) large saltpan in southwestern Bolivia. It lies at an altitude of 3650 m (11,970 feet) and in prehistoric times it was part of a huge salt lake that covered most of southwestern Bolivia. About 20,000 tons of salt are produced in the area every year, mostly using traditional methods and it is estimated that the Salar de Uyuni contains some 10 billion tons of fine salt.

In the middle of the salt pan lies the Isla de Pescadores, where you can see stands of cactus and a colony of vizcachas (long-tailed rodents related to the chinchilla). Northwest of the Salar de Uyuni is the Salar de Coipasa. On the northern shore of that saltpan is a unique Chipaya Indian village. It is though that the residents in that village are the descendents of the Tiahuanaco civilization.

The village of Uyuni, southeast of the saltpan is probably the best place to stay if you want to explore the area.


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