Polaroid of the week: Sunrise over Bolivia’s salt flats


Last Updated on March 3, 2021

polaroid bolivia uyuni salt flats sunrise

It is hard enough for anyone to yank themselves out of bed at 4:30am, but crawling out from under warm, llama wool blankets after two days of off-roading adventure across southern Bolivia was nearly impossible.

Impossible, but only for all of about two minutes until we realized that today was the day! At 5am sharp we would finally be heading out to see the sunrise on the Salar de Uyuni salt flats – the experience we had been waiting for the entire trip.

Our jeep raced the sunrise and parked in the middle of the vast salt flats just as the blue night sky turned red just above the salty, white horizon. The salt crunched beneath us as we watched the sun rise, slowly painting different shades of red, orange and pink on the ground around us.

When the sun had risen far enough into the sky, our driver sped us off to the Isla De Incahuasi, a cactus-filled island surrounded by the salt flats. Here we hiked and had breakfast with hundreds of giant cacti behind us and salt sprawling out in front of us as far as the eye can see.

Considering this trip? Stay tuned for more detailed posts on this adventure soon!

Have you taken a trip across the Salar de Uyuni? We would love to hear your story and what company you went with. 

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Tags : boliviaPolaroid


  1. Gorgeous! We have a similar picture of our shadows, but the light seems much more orange here. We actually saw the sun break over the horizon from the cactus island, and that was definitely the coldest I was on the whole trip – I thought my toes might actually freeze off!

    1. Sam – we felt this kind of cold on our last day in San Pedro de Atacama. We did this geyser tour, picked up at 430am and were out at the geysers at 630, the sun didn’t come up over the peaks of the Andes til about 715 and by then I had stabbing pains in my toes. I thought I was going to lose them. The sun was well up by the time we got to cactus island, in fact I thought we were going to take all the funny pictures before breakfast! 🙂

    1. Thanks, Sara 🙂 It’s an amazing place!! Glad we got to experience for sunrise – just found out that not every tour company includes the sunrise, so I am glad ours did 🙂

  2. That is just stunning! I’m really sad I missed sunrise there now! We had all sorts of issues when I was there because there was a protest in the park and half of it was closed. I feel privileged to have seen most of it though (we got to the best bits!).

    1. I read about all your issues in your post – I also had to giggle about your toilet roll photos and couldn’t agree more about the difficulties of getting decent photos in the salt flats you describe – it sure is not as easy as people make it look!

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