Climbing: Uturuncu (6008m) & Salar de Uyuni (6 days, from La Paz)

The Uturuncu is a not completely extinct volcano, the activity of which shows the isolated fumaroles. At 6.008 m, it is the highest peak in southern Bolivia and the Potosí Department. Because of its vast remoteness in the Cordillera de Lipez, the Uturuncu is rarely climbed. He is considered the easiest 6,000 to climb in Bolivia, and one of the easiest in the world.
With its 10,582 square kilometers, the Salar de Uyuni is the largest salt flat in the world. This vast, flat land of pure white salt at 3,656 metres above sea level, stands in contrast with multi-colored lagoons, volcanic mountains, tree-like rocks and towering islands of coral to create one of the most unique and bizarre landscapes in the world.
Some of the sights within the region include: The Train Cemetery of Uyuni; Incahuasi Island in the Salar; Ojos del Salar; and the Eduardo Avaroa Nature Reserve, with a multitude of brightly colored lakes, geysers, volcanoes and the breeding grounds of 3 of the worlds 6 species of flamingos.

Itinerary

First day: Bus to Uyuni

In the evening, you take a comfortable tourist bus to Uyuni and arrive early next morning. (-/-/-)

Second day: Tour of the Salar de Uyuni

In the morning you start your trip in a private 4WD vehicle to the largest salt desert in the world with 10,582 km². The journey takes you along the edge of the salt flats to the village of Colchani, where the salt of the Salar is painstakingly processed into table salt. You will visit a small family business before you continue to the salt pyramids on the banks of the Salar - salt that has been piled to dry with pickaxe and shovel. Here you can finally immerse yourself in the seemingly endless "white" of the Salar. The Tunupa volcano dominates the horizon on the northern edge of the Salar, the direction you are now heading for. After about an hour’s drive, you reach the village of Coquesa where the vehicle brings you up the flanks of the Tunupa volcano to visit a cave tomb and the mummies of Coquesa. From here, the Salar literally lies at your feet. After visiting the museum in Chantani, you continue to Incahuasi “island", located in the middle of the salt flats, making it one of the absolute highlights of the region. A small circular route takes you across the island, where you can marvel at the centuries-old cacti that soar up to 12 meters into the blue sky. From the viewpoint at the top of the island you have a 360° view of the Salar. You continue south and take position for an unforgettable sunset on the salt flat before you leave it, then you go to your accommodation on the southern edge of the Salar in a small village of quinoa farmers and llama herders. Accommodation in simple hostel in San Juan, Bella Vista or Atulcha. (-/BL/D)

Third day: Colorful highland lakes and Eduardo Avaroa Nature Reserve

A breathtaking landscape lies ahead of you in the afternoon. Passing the active volcano Ollagüe, you reach the colorful lakes "Laguna Cañapa", "Laguna Hedionda", "Laguna Chiarkota", "Laguna Honda" and "Laguna Ramaditas". On their flat shores you can observe the three flamingo species that live in this region, looking for food at these rather inhospitable water sources framed by hard borax and sulfur crusts. You leave the valley of the lakes and immerse yourself in an extensive sand and stone desert - the “Siloli” desert, a fantastic surreal landscape that offers the whole range of terracotta and ocher tones. You race through the expanse over improvised tracks, past the "Arbol de Piedra", a stone figure created by erosion, to the absolute highlight in the heart of the Avaroa Reserve - the "Laguna Colorada", a lake colored red by algae that hosts thousands of flamingos. Overnight Huayllajara/Laguna Colorada in a simple hostel. (B/L/D).

Fourth day: Eduardo Avaroa Nature Reserve and journey to Quetena Chico

You start the day early and your journey takes you to the geyser field "Sol de Mañana" - a "devilish" spectacle of hissing water vapor columns and bubbling earth holes, where you have also reached the highest point of the trip at 5000 meters. But you still won't run out of highlights – the trip goes on to the Salar de Chalviri, a play of colors from snow white to desert red and azure blue. Nearby, the hot thermal springs of Polques invite you to a stop. Shortly afterwards you will see the valley "Valle de las Damas del Desierto" - also called "Salvador Dali Desert" by tourists. Rock formations formed by the wind, unique in their shape, lonely in a huge sandy desert exposed to erosion. And as soon as you think that things can no longer get any more beautiful, the pearl of this region lies in front of you: the brightly emerald-colored "Laguna Verde" at the foot of the majestic volcano "Licancabur". You have now reached the southernmost extension of your trip. You return to Polques, pass the Salar de Chalviri, the high-altitude lakes Laguna Kollpa and Kalina, and the vast llama pastures “Bofedal de Quetena” until you arrive at Quetena Chico. Overnight in Quetena Chico. (B/L/D)

Fifth day: Ascent of Uturuncu and return to Uyuni

The Uturuncu is a not completely extinct volcano, with isolated fumaroles showing its activity. At 6.008 m, it is the highest peak in southern Bolivia and the Potosí Department. Because of its vast remoteness in the Cordillera de Lipez, the Uturuncu is rarely climbed. It is considered one of the easiest 6,000m peak to climb worldwide. You leave very early today and travel relatively far up to the mountain by car, on a gravel track which was a former mine access road. Then, "only" about 800 strenuous vertical meters remain for the volcanic ascent on foot. This section does not pose any technical difficulties, so you can concentrate on physical exertion and altitude. At the summit, a fascinating view of the desert region of South Lipez awaits you. After the descent, make a detour to the beautiful Laguna Celeste, then return to Uyuni. An hour before you reach Uyuni, you pass the "new" village of San Cristobal, relocated to make room for the country's largest silver mine. Before you reach Uyuni, a short detour to the train cemetery of Uyuni tells the story of the blooming silver mining industry at the beginning of the 20th century and its decline after the collapse in prices on the world market. Arrival in Uyuni in the evening. Time for dinner. Then take the night bus from Uyuni back to La Paz. (B/L/-)

Sixth day: Return to La Paz

Arrival in La Paz in the early morning. (-/-/-) - END OF OUR SERVICES

Included in the package

- Bus tickets as stated in the itinerary
- Private 4WD vehicle with Spanish-speaking driver-guide, oxygen tank and satellite emergency phone, from Uyuni back to Uyuni (days 2 - 5)
- 2 nights in an overnight tourist bus (La Paz – Uyuni and back to La Paz)
- 3x overnight stays in DBL room
- Local guide for climbing Uturuncu volcano (Spanish-speaking)
- Entrance fees
- Meals according to program (B= breakfast; L= lunch; D= Dinner)
- Local community taxes
- Optional: Cultural guide English/German speaking (On request)

Reservation

Please do not hesitate to contact us for price requests, reservation, general question, and individual tour inquiries, at: contact(at)landmarktravelbolivia.com

Link

https://www.landmarktravelbolivia.com/bergsteigen-uturuncu

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