IS THIS TRIP FOR YOU?
If you are already planning the visit to Bolivia's most popular sight, Salar de Uyuni & the southwest, but you like the idea of starting righ in the doorstep in the city of La Paz (or San Pedro de Atacama) saving a long travel to Uyuni by bus, train or plane, this trip is the perfect match for you. Moreover, you will be able to expend 3 days exploring off the beaten track places such as Sajama NP on the way. If you enjoy remote and natural landscapes and villages and are ready to spend many hours in a 4WD vehicle every day, manage without the modern life conforts (WiFi, heating, etc.), like to taste local food, meet indigenous people of Bolivia and are in moderate fit to enjoy hikes in the mountains, this is the ideal trip for you. In brief, you should love culture and nature, be enthusiastic about the idea of 'roughing it' for a few days, and enjoy a relatively good health.
Sajama National Park - Enjoy the beautiful views of Bolivia's first national park exalted with pristine landscapes including boiling geysers, hot springs and Bolivia's highest snow-capped peak.
Hidden archaeological sites - Trek to a remote and mysteryous pre-Inca burial town through hidden trails and over striking canyons.
Salar de Coipasa - Be prepared to be amazed by the mesmerizing sight of not just one but two great salt lakes: the lesser known Salar de Coipasa and the stunning Salar de Uyuni.
Isla Incahuasi - Be delighted by the dream-like scenery from this island surrounded by the endless white sea of Salar de Uyuni.
Laguna Colorada - Enjoy the Andean wildlife and watch pink flamingos at this surreal red lagoon.
Eduardo Avaroa Reserve - Amazing views of colored deserts and pristine lagoons in the Los Lipez region await you along the Laguna Verde, Siloli Desert and the 'Stone Tree'.
- Explore natural hot springs, boiling geysers and desolate landscapes
- Discover pre-Inca burial sites and native wildlife
- Be blown away by the beauty of Salar de Coipasa(Coipasa Salt Flats)
- Enjoy the spectacular scenery from Incahuasi Island in Uyuni Salt Flats
- Photograph pink flamingos at Laguna Colorada (Red Lagoon)
- Admire colored deserts and pristine lagoons in Eduardo Avaroa Reserve
DAY 1: LA PAZ – SAJAMA NP
Our first day of our exclusive trip begins at a metting point in La Paz for an early departure, en route to the vast Altiplano (high plateau) and Sajama National Park across the city of El Alto. On our way we will make a stop to visit the town of Curahuara de Carangas and we will visit the colonial church "Sistine Chapel of the Altiplano" which conserves impressive murals and detailed artwork. Other high spots include "Ciudad de Piedra" (Stone City), archaic archaeological sites and the stunning views of the high Andean Altiplano (high plateau) before arriving in Sajama National Park.
Enjoy a picnic lunch and have a leisure day exploring the beautiful surroundings, breathing the fresh air of the mountains while enjoying some peace these remarkable landscapes provide. Also, don't forget to photograph Bolivia's highest peak, and its traditional lifestyle and farm llamas/alpacas. Putting the icing on the cake we will soak up with the healing powers of natural hot springs with the admirable Mt. Sajama (6.542m) watching us. Tonight we will be sharing stories and plans for the following days in a local village, where warm and tasty dinner is served.
DAY 2: SAJAMA NATIONAL PARK FULL DAY
The wonders of Parque Nacional Sajama deserve a full day of exploring. A number of options are available in order to spend an active day. First stop is an otherworldly geyser field. In the morning you can choose between a hike to a lagoon in the thick of the snow-capped mountains that surround the area, or alternativley you can try climbing to the top of a 5.900m volcano (our vehicle can also get you near the top). Another dilemma you will face is either hike to the Queñua forest (endemic, dwarf Altiplano species of tree) or to Mt. Sajama's base camp (used as first stop by climbers before ascending the mountain). Whichever you choose, there will be plenty to do and stay active in this natural playground. We follow up with a drive to the south to have our first taste of the charming pink flamingos in the Andean lagoons. We explore hidden archaeological remains and learn about the territory's natural cultural history.
This day is special, as we will explore an off the tourist trail, since this beautiful region is known just to very few people who venture out here to see Bolivia's hidden mountains, and thus we can fully enjoy of this natural landscape almost entrely for ourselves (there are occasionally travelers). We rest at night in a larger town as a break for the long trip to Uyuni.
DAY 3 – SALAR DE UYUNI VIA SALAR DE COIPASA
Moving forward from the larger town on the previous day, drive along roads with abundant herds of alpacas, llamas and vicuñas across the enormous Altiplano (high plateau) in transit to Salar de Uyuni. It is a less tumultuous day but full of surprises along the way. Put the explorer hat on and be ready to unveil remote villages and a secret, ancient burial town in the mountains where awaits the mystery of well preserved mummies in one of the last remainings on the continent. Following our drive, we cross the country's second largest salt flats: Salar de Coipasa, which isolated in its 3.200 km2 is a vast white salt sea where no other tourist can be found. At the end of the day we will reach a small village on the northernmost tip of Salar de Uyuni and wil enjoy a side trip for sunset and an evening of leisure.
DAY 4: UYUNI SALT FLATS – FULL DAY
Today we will enjoy the full day with the mesmerizing wonders of the world's largest salt flats. The day begins with a stunning sunrise on the Salar. Then an entire day is spent exploring as much of the 12.000 km2 of salt as it is posssible.Highlights include a visit to sla Incahuasi -a rock outcrop covered in ancient coral rok and giant cacti lost in the middle of the salt desert- which provides us with great views and moderate hike of this wonderful white sea. You will have time to explore a former salt hotel and for getting creative with your camera (bring props along) to take advantage of the depth illusions that provides the magical Salar de Uyuni. This is the perfect place to have some fun and take photographs to show those back home.
DAY 5: LAGOONS, DESERTS & EDUARDO AVAROA RESERVE
Head further south resuming your trip and stop at sweeping views and wildlife that will leave you in awe like the pristinte chain of lagoons called Cañapa, Hedionda and Honda. Afterwards, head to the boundaries of Eduardo Avaroa National Reserve traversing the Siloli Desert, lying along the boundaries of Bolivia and Chile, not before we stop at Árbol de Piedra* (Stone Tree) and other rock formations along the way. Before we go back into our lodge for the night, we end the day with a grand finale watching the beauty of pink flamingos at Laguna Colorada*.
*If choosing our Premium package, you will see these attractions on the following day
DAY 6: LAGUNA VERDE – UYUNI
Today is the last day of our once-in-a-lifetime expedition. We continue our drive through Eduardo Avaroa Reserve, reaching the trip's highest point. We reach the trip's highest point continuing our drive through Eduardo Avaroa Reserve: Sol de Mañana (Rising Sun, 4.900m), a steaming geyser field out of this world. Then we enjoy a soothing soak in hot springs of natural formation, we get to photograph Licancabur Volcano overlooking Laguna Verde (Green Lagoon) before going back to the town of Uyuni (or if you prefer at this poin, arrange a bus transfer over the border to continue to San Pedro de Atacama in Chile, 1.5 hours away). The tour finishes in Uyuni. There you can return to La Paz by bus, train or plane (not included).
WHY TAKE THIS TRIP WITH US?
- We do not add a markup to our prices. This tour is fully operated by Banjo Tours from start to finis.
- We don't have any record whatsoever of the ludicrous behavior reported in other companies (drunken guides, unsafe drivers, rude staff, etc.)
- You won't have unpleasant surprises (different accommodation, surcharges, etc.). Our itinerary, inclusions/exclusions are comprehensive. You get what you pay for and nothing less.
- We provide our own professional and knowledgeable qualified and bilingual guides (if applicalbe according to your selected package).
- You will discover some of Bolivia's best kept secrets and, alongside the amazing Uyuni Salt flats, you will be able to get off the beaten track and spend a day in Sajama National Park and other highlights along the way starting right in the city of La Paz with no need of taking a tiring overnight bus or an expensive flight to Uyuni.
- We are a local company that succesfully have been running this type of trips for with more than 8 years of experience.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION TO CONSIDER
- The itinerary is always followed with a 90% degree of accuracy. We always try to stick to it, however we reserve the right to modify it without previous notice in case we meet factors out of our direct control like weather or road conditions. in case any change is done, it will be based on good judgment and modifications that we consider necessary for your own safety and comfort, being promptly notified beforehand. Any possible change is provided with adequate proof that such change may be necessary. We never alter or skip attractions in the itinerary arbitrarily. Hence, you should not take the above route as 'set in stone' and and we will not he held liable for any loss or damage that you may feel arising from such changes made in good faith.
- Usual comforts of the modern world are not available in a remote region as the Uyuni Salt Flats. Hot water is available most of the time (according to package) and electricity is available or a few hours. All in all, you should not expect high standards of accommodation.
- Food and resources are hygienically handled. It is our prioirity and job to satisfy you with the limited resources available in the region and we do what is in our hands to serve appropriate portions of vegetables and fruit in the vegetarian menu, but should not be expecting special menus.
- Access to some parts of the salt flats may be restricted during the rainy season (December to March/April) such as Incahuasi Island, and time on the actual salt flats is limimted. We will follow most of the regular itinerary as normal.
- You need to be willing of spending a good part of the time driving every day through unpaved and dirt roads, as we cover moe than 1.000 kilometres. This is the reason we provide you with safe and comfortable vehicles that will allow you to occupy a full seat with a good back rest and functioning seatbelt.
- We also provide opportunities to do physsical activities such as mild hiking, bathing in natural hot springs, etc. and walk besides just getting in the car. We do some moderate hiking at high elevations, so a decent fit is recommended in order to fully enjoy the trip.
- We select carefully our personnel and we operate directly in the entirety of the tour. Drunken drivers or irresponsible guides are not a reality with us. Every employee is fully qualified, responsible and knowledgeable that you will have a great experience.
WE ALWAYS INCLUDE
- Private 4WD vehicle & professional driver
- Specialized local tour leader
- Meal (5B/6L/5D)
- 5 nts. Accommodation
WE CAN INCLUDE
- All national park admission fees
- International & domestic flights
- Airport transfers
- Additional accommodation
- Additional transport