Uyuni Salt Flat (3 days)
3 days group tour to the Uyuni Salt Flat and Colored Lagoons, beginning in Uyuni and ending in San Pedro de Atacama. It includes basic accommodation and meals.
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- Prices for Uyuni Salt Flat (3 days): US$ 169 per person.
- Pickup at your hotel in Uyuni.
- Drop off at the bus station or downtown San Pedro de Atacama.
- Shared transportation (4x4 for 6 people in Bolivia and minibus in Chile).
- Spanish-speaking driver.
- All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner).
- Sleeping bag.
- Basic accommodation:
- 1st night at a hostel in Colcha K, in double, triple or quadruple room (according to availability), with shared bathroom (showers with hot water).
- 2nd night at Refugio Huayllajara, in shared room of maximum 6 people, with shared bathroom (without showers; Bs. 20 for hot shower, payment in cash).
How to book
- Select the departure date from the calendar.
- Select the number of people.
- Click on "Add to cart".
- Pay online an advance deposit of the total price of the program.
- Once payment is made, the reservation is automatically confirmed. The remaining balance is paid in Uyuni only in cash, even the same day of departure of the tour.
- You can reschedule or cancel the tour (with 100% refund), until 48 hours before it starts.
- Entrances to parks (186 bolivianos per person).
- Entrance to Eduardo Avaroa Andean Fauna National Reserve (150 bolivianos per person).
- Entrance to Polques Hot Springs (6 bolivianos per person).
- Entrance to Incahuasi Island (30 bolivianos per person).
- Access to toilets on the way (approximately 6 bolivianos each acces).
- Health insurance.
- English-speaking driver:
- 1 person: US$ 55.
- Group of 2 or more people: US$ 45 per person.
- Private room and bathroom (hot water shower) for all accommodation's nights:
- 1 person: US$ 45.
- Group of 2 people or more: US$ 30 per person.
What to bring
- Comfortable and warm clothing.
- Comfortable shoes (ideally trekking shoes).
- Swimsuit and towel (for Polques Hot Springs).
- Toilet paper.
- Water (1 litre per person, for the first day. The rest of the days you can buy it on the road).
- Passport or ID card. If your a foreigner resident in Chile you should take both to show them in customs.
- Bs. 350 for expenses not included on the tour (entrance fees, taxes, bathroom, water and souvenirs, among others).
- Due to most of this tour is made above 13,000 feet of altitude and in a narrow vehicle, the following people cannot take it:
- Children until the age of 6.
- Adults over the age of 65.
- People that weigh more than 100 kg
- Pregnant women.
- People with high blood pressure, heart failure, asthma or similar.
*If you have doubts about the proceedings to the enter to the country due to the pandemic, you can check the requirements in this website.
Start: Day 1 at 10:30 am at your hotel in Uyuni.
End: Day 3 at 1:00 pm at the bus station or downtown San Pedro de Atacama (this end time could be modified due to weather conditions or force majeure reasons, which is why we recommend you leaving San Pedro de Atacama the day after the end date of the tour).
Day 1: We will pick you up at your accommodation in our 4x4 vehicle for 6 people, in which we will make all the tour during the three days. We will leave towards the Uyuni Salt Flat, passing before by the train cemetery and the town of Colchani, where we will be able to buy craftwork. After that, once we are on the salt flat, we will visit the Salt Museum, and we will travel to the Incahuasi Island, a limestone formation in the center of the salt flat. Here we will be able to walk by a track, see the giant cactus and have a privileged view of the salt flat from the top of the hill. We will end the day seeing the sunset inside the salt flat, so then we can go to the hostel in Colcha K, where we will have dinner and rest for the next day.
Day 2: During the morning, we will leave Colcha K and keep going by the road that goes through the Chiguana Salt Flat. We will visit the Cañapa, Hedionda, Honda and Chiarkota lagoons, before enter to the Siloli Desert. We will end the day in the Colorada Lagoon, nesting center of more than 30,000 flamingos. We will spend the night in the Refugio Huayllajara.
Day 3: We will leave early in the morning to see the sunrise in the Sol de Mañana Geysers, intermittent sources of water that rise at a 90°C temperature, and where we will have the chance of taking pictures using the contrasts of the first lights and the steam. In addition, we will visit the Polques Hot Springs (time to bathe, according to the times of the tour), the Salvador Dalí Desert, and the Verde Lagoon and Blanca Lagoon, located in the foothills of the Licancabur Volcano. Later, we will get to the border to make the corresponding procedures, after what we will continue to San Pedro de Atacama, place where we will end the tour.
During the months from January to April, it takes places the weather phenomenon known as the Altiplanic winter, rain season in the central Andes. Due to this, is is possible that the described itinerary is modified as follows:
- The places visited on Day 2 are replaced by the following: Rocks Valley, Anaconda Canyon, Vinto Lagoon and Italia Perdida.
- The first night is not in a hostel in San Juan del Rosario, but a hostel in Uyuni.
- The Incahuasi Island is not visited because it is in the center of the salt flat, place where there is the largest concentration of water during the rain season.
Force majeure changes
This is a reference itinerary. The route to get to the salt flat, the places visited, the indicated order and the end time will always be subject to changes according to weather conditions, demonstration and accommodation availability. The confirmation of the itinerary is obtained in the briefing that the local supplier gives a day before the beginning of the activity, which does not mean that it can be modified due to the happening of some of the situations already mentioned once the tour has already begun.
Frequently Asked Questions
What days of the year can I make this excursion?
The tour has confirmed departures all days of the week, the whole year.
How far in advance should I book the activity?
Due to high demand of the activity, we recommend to book at least a week in advance.
What documents do I need to cross the border into Chile?
In case you come from Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Uruguay, Paraguay or Peru, you should present only your ID card or some equivalent document. If you come from some country which Chile has no diplomatic relations, you should show a Visitor Visa with the previous authorization of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. On the other hand, if you are a foreign person resident in Chile, besides your passport, you should take your ID card, so you can prove your residence before the police authorities in customs.
Do I need to be vaccinated against yellow fever for the tour?
The vaccine against yellow fever is not required for the tour to the Uyuni Salt Flat. It is only required if you subsequently plan to visit the Bolivian jungle.
What kind of vehicles are used in this activity?
The activity is made on a minibus in Chile and on a 4x4 (Toyota Land Cruiser) in Bolivia in a group of 6 people each.
How is the weather along the tour?
In summer (December to March), the temperature ranges from about 4 °C as a minimum, to 23 °C maximum. In winter (June to September) the temperature ranges from about -20 °C as a minimum, to 16 °C maximum.
How many bags or suitcases can I bring?
Each passenger may carry at most one bag or suitcase of 18 kilos which will go above the 4x4.
How much money should I bring to the tour?
We recommend to bring at least Bs. 500 per person for expenses not included in the tour, as entrances to parks, border tax, access to toilets and water.
How likely is suffer "puna" or altitude sickness during the tour?
Most of the tour is made above 13,123 ft. of altitude so it is quite likely to suffer from altitude sickness specially the first day of the tour. To avoid or reduce the general feeling of discomfort, we recommend acclimate to the altitude one or two days above 8,202 ft., drink lots of water before and during the tour, eat light meals (avoid meat) the previous days, and do not drink alcohol the night before the beginning of the tour.
What is it about the meals?
The meals are varied, and includes tea, coffee, bread, cookies and fruit for breakfast, and meat, pasta, rice, soup and vegetables for lunch and dinner. In case you need a vegetarian menu, you must mark your preference during the booking process.
What about the tour in case it rains?
In case of rain, the order of the places visited, the possibility to see the sunrise and the accommodation places are subject to change, because some of the roads might be closed. Added to the previous information, water in the Uyuni Salt Flat is an important obstacle and the Incahuasi Island (located in the center of the salt flat) remains closed. This means the Incahuasi Island cannot be visited and we enter to the salt flat only for a certain distance, so the passengers are safe.
When is it possible to see the mirror effect on the Uyuni Salt Flat?
The mirror effect occurs when there is water on the salt flat. This happens only in rainy periods (January and February) and after them (March).
Why all the restrictions to make the tour?
The tour is made in the Altiplano area, at an altitude above 9,842.5 ft. Just with this, our body is submitted to an abnormal stress, which can cause discomfort and risk in people with the conditions mentioned in the restriction’s section. Moreover, the tour does not have health insurance and there are not health centers to treat this kind of situations in a proper manner on the route.
Is it possible to do the tour staying in hotels instead of refugios and hostels?
If you want to do the tour from Uyuni to San Pedro de Atacama with superior accommodation please check our tour Superior Uyuni Salt Flat Tour (3 days).
How is the infrastructure in every refugio?
Colcha K refugio has doble, triple and quadruple rooms (according to availability), with private bathroom and hot shower, while Huayllajara refugio has shared rooms of maximum 6 people, shared bathroom without shower (Bs. 20 for hot shower, payment in cash). Non has internet included.