Awash In Salt: Photos From Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia

With so many photos of Bolivia's famous Salar de Uyuni floating around, we thought it would be impossible for it to surprise us. At an elevation of 3653 metres, the largest salt flat in the world (12,106 square kilometres) was formed when the prehistoric Lago Minchin evaporated. Today it is visited by tourists and also provides salt for the Bolivians, though we are told they still import sea salt from countries like Chile.

Salt dries in mounds on the flat before it is processed.

Unfortunately we only had one day to explore the salt pan. When filmmakers want to depict 'heaven' as an endless expanse of otherworldly white clouds and surfaces, this could easily be their set. We sat in silence as we drove along, staring out the windows and contemplating the vastness of this unique place.

I'll let our photos tell the story for words cannot describe such a location...

Locals call these formations 'The Hexagons.'

Parts of the flat are wet, others drier...

Deep "caves" have formed on parts of the surface.

We visited this bizarre natural island covered in giant cactus...

...and ate lunch on tables formed out of salt.

So, what do you think of Bolivia's most popular attraction?


  1. Salar de uyuni pictures 24 September, 2011 at 04:41 Reply

    […] Salar de Uyuni Bolivia Photos ??” Jun 2, 2011 … With so many photos of Bolivia's famous Salar de Uyuni floating around, we thought it would be … […]

  2. Claire 16 June, 2011 at 08:33 Reply

    These pictures are phenomenal-I just heard of this place last year after another blogger visited and wrote about it. Now two posts on the topic and I am thinking… close is Nicaragua to Bolivia?! Is this doable in a weekend?!! haha. Thanks for sharing. 

  3. Erin in Costa Rica 15 June, 2011 at 17:18 Reply

    Love the photo of the piece of salt on your hand. It helps me to imagine what it looks like in real life on a larger scale…not sure if that makes sense. Let’s just say it makes this photo essay that much more magical :)
    The photo of the car is cool, too – the reflection and background are so perfect it looks photoshopped!

  4. The Friday Shirk Report – Volume 113 10 June, 2011 at 10:06 Reply

    […] ships. These dudes sneaked in, stayed overnight and took some cool shots (thx for sharing Lynz!) – Awash in Salt: Photos From Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia – 50 Portraits of Power. Fantastic images and interesting audio that accompanies each one (thx […]

  5. Red Nomad Oz 8 June, 2011 at 05:06 Reply

    Wow!  How surreal – makes the saltworks I’ve visited downunder here in Australia look like … well … a pinch of salt!  Great photos – love the handstand one!!

  6. Megan 6 June, 2011 at 06:38 Reply

    These are incredible!

    I guess with the salt being super concentrated it must hurt if you get some on your hands and then in your eye?? I can totally imagine myself doing that. 

  7. Abby 4 June, 2011 at 11:25 Reply

    Yay! I’ve finally made it over and subscribed to your site — and just in time for this. WOW. Like you said, there are so many photos around, but yours are ridiculously spectacular. You almost need sunglasses to look at them! They are so, so very beautiful. Glad you guys had fun!

  8. Abi 4 June, 2011 at 10:27 Reply

    These are the most beautiful photos I have seen for a long time. I missed Bolivia when I was travelling through South America – and now I really wish I hadn’t! Lovely work – thank you.

  9. Krista 3 June, 2011 at 17:02 Reply

    WOW!! Your photos are absolutely stunning!! It feels peaceful just looking at them, I can only imagine how it must’ve been gazing out over the flats.

  10. emilyinchile 3 June, 2011 at 16:50 Reply

    I can see how this would be the kind of place where you’re still blown away even after all the photos. I hope to be blown away in person someday not too far in the future!

    And your photos are really gorgeous.

  11. Ordinary Traveler 3 June, 2011 at 14:34 Reply

    Great shots! I’ve also wondered myself if I’ll be bored of the photos I take here since there are SO many floating around on the net. I guess it’s completely different when you see it in person.

  12. Sherry 3 June, 2011 at 11:32 Reply

    Wow! What an awesome photo collection to inspire me to go there, too. The photos are gorgeous and the place looks almost surreal.  I can’t even begin to imagine what it was like for the two of you to be there in person.

  13. Jamie Davy 3 June, 2011 at 00:41 Reply

    youre right, there are a lot of photos. but for good reason, its bloody amazing!
    love the second one, it almost looks like its taken with a tilt shift.
    the sunset ones are great as well.

  14. Cathy Sweeney 3 June, 2011 at 00:39 Reply

    I’ve been craving to see the Bolivian salt flats ever since I first heard of them about a year ago. And your photos are totally different than ones I’ve seen before — only makes me want to see them even more.

  15. metsbwd 2 June, 2011 at 23:28 Reply

    Wow.  I was looking forward to these, and they were worth the wait!  I can’t wait to see these in person, some day!  Amazing!

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