In the Bolivian Altiplano, there are a lot of places that can dazzle you with their beauty. The Salar de Uyuni is, certainly, the most famous among them. Yet, it is not the sole attraction that draws the hordes of travelers to the region. In my post about the Salt Flats Salar de Uyuni: Where Heaven and Earth Meet I mentioned that your Salar de Uyuni tour would not be complete without seeing a few other local gems such as, for example, the Eduardo Avaroa Andean Fauna National Reserve.
If you ask me to name just one place on earth that impressed me most, without a second thought, I would say Salar de Uyuni. Well, at least, among all those places that I have visited myself. This extraordinary nature’s paradise is one of those rare sights that will look in real life exactly like the mind-blowing landscapes from National Geographic.
Hidden among the highlands of the Atacama Desert, Salar de Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat. Even today, this natural marvel has preserved its pristine beauty and looks completely untouched by modern civilization. It is Bolivia’s number one destination for travelers and a must-see on your South American tour. The vast expanses of the flats that seem to have no bounds will surely take your breath away and capture your imagination.
Every year, in late February or early March, the sleepy mining town of Oruro, located in the middle of the Bolivian Altiplano region, all of a sudden comes to life with wild celebrations. The weekend before Ash Wednesday, its usually quiet streets become overflown with jubilant crowds, loud music, and grotesque characters, dressed in lavish dazzling costumes. For several sleepless days and nights, one of the most unique carnivals in the world, known as Carnaval de Oruro in Spanish, enlivens the local community that was home to ancient indigenous festivals long before the modern holiday emerged.