Tag Archive: Salar de Uyuni

Sunday Travel Tales

Uyuni, Bolivia

Train Cemetery

In the past Uyuni in the south west of Bolivia was a major hub for rail transport. Today, much of the past lies in ruins, exposed to the elements, rusting, but remain a reminder of a more glorious past.

Tourists passing through the Salar de Uyuni (Uyuni Salt Lake) normally visit this graveyard.






Miles of ghost trains


The legacy, axle deep in the drifting sands


Asi es la vida = This is the life


NB: These photos aren’t mine. Had many, but like all my momentos… gone to the ravages of time. If you are the owner of any please contact me for recognition.



Sunday Travel Tales



A little place in the middle of nowhere. It should have been called ‘Notalota’ because that’s what’s there; Not a lot o’ of anything.

Alota is in the southwest Bolivia and is visited by quite a lot of tourists. They are not there to see Alota, they are passing the Salar de Uyuni on their way to Chile via the Coloured Lakes, or indeed coming from Chile via the Coloured Lakes.

Other tourists pass here and overnight after having visited the Salar and before they return to the city of Uyuni.

Alota is a special place; it is more than just an adobe pueblo.

Alota doesn’t have electricity; no electricity equals no lights; no lights equals no light pollution. The Army base has a generator, but it goes off about 7pm. The night is as dark as you can imagine, and then some.

As we approached Alota, I would tell my tour group that the first thing they did when we got out of the trucks (Toyota 4x4s) was to look up. That’s it, just look up; I never told them why.

When they did, this is what they saw…

Millions of stars and the Milky Way

They looked up and remained speechless, just ooohed and ahhhed, and kept looking.

The photo is from Random Ramblings, a blog about a South American trip, worth a look. Unfortunately, my photos of these tours have all been destroyed. But I can assure you, the effect is the same.

We stayed in Alota overnight and the next day returned to Uyuni via San Christobal and the Cemetério de Trens.

San Christobal has been destroyed, the village gone, the oldest adobe cathedral demolished for silver and rare earths by an American mining company. This will feature in a future Sunday Travel Tale, as will the Train Cemetery.

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