Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Five Things To Do on the Salar de Uyuni

The Salar de Uyuni is the largest salt flat in the world.  It's over 100km wide, blindingly white, and dead flat.  And it’s a right of passage when cycling South America to ride right across the salt surface.

Riding on the Salar de Uyuni.

The salt flat is so huge that you can ride for an hour and the view doesn’t change one bit.  So cyclists have a few tricks up their sleeves to pass the time during the crossing.  Here are five of our favourite ways to entertain oneself on the Salar de Uyuni.

1. Ride with your Eyes Closed

Eyes closed on the Salar de Uyuni.

Despite what your mother told you, riding a bike with your eyes closed is a great way to pass the afternoon.  Dave managed 7 minutes and Jenn 9 minutes before eventually spinning into a dizzy spiral.  A related game is bicycle Marco Polo.

2. Visit the Ojos del Salar

The salar actually has water underneath. At the Ojos (eyes) you can see it bubbling through the salt.

Ojos del sal on the Salar de Uyuni.


Note: A visit to the Ojos should not be combined with activity #1.

3. Take Silly Perspective Pictures

The air on the salar is spectacularly clear. So if you’ve ever wanted to …

Jenn about to brush her teeth.

… hang out with a giant toothbrush …

Bike surfing on the Salar de Uyuni.

… go bicycle surfing …

Vroom vroom.

… drive a shoe …

Devil on my shoulder  Angel on my shoulder.

… or be the angel / devil on someone’s shoulder, this is the place for you.

4. Sleep on Isla Incahuasi

Just like the actual ocean, the salar has islands in it.  Isla Incahuasi lies pretty much right in the middle and is covered with big barrel cacti.  A family lives on the island and has a refugio just for cyclists.

Isla Incahuasi on the Salar de Uyuni.

Isla Incahuasi rising from the salt.

View from the refugio on Isla Incahuasi in the Salar de Uyuni.

Morning view from the refugio window.

5. Feel the Breeze

But watch out for that sunburn!

Honeymooning on the Salar de Uyuni.


  1. lol SO fun, best perspective pics ever, those are hilarious!!!! and i love that there is a llama outside that refugio window!! but are you guys seriously riding naked over the nowhere-to-hide open salt plains?? lol.

  2. Hey Folks, Great pictures, and hopefully a lot of suntan lotion. I will be forwarding the toothbrush picture to Vicki - she'll appreciate the thought! Well, continue having fun, knowing you've got friends around the world! JPP