Thru the desert of Atacama on 4X4

It was time to yet again say bye to another country for new adventures and this time it was time to enter Bolivia. We had bought a ticket for a bus going to San Pedro de Atacama by bus and as per plan reach our destination somewhat 17 hour later. The trip turned out to be more than just an easy ride on the bus. We were thrown out of our seats in Calama a few hours from SpDA early morning because of heavy rain that was too much for the sand roads. After talking to a few fellows that had slept on the bus station awaiting for another bus or the road to be fixed we decided to take a taxi rather than to try our luck. Off by taxi that was able to drive past the broken road, and a few hours later we had reached the small village of San Pedro de Atacama with only a few thousand inhabitants. This was a sanctuary of back packers all with great anticipation to pass by the driest desert at earth into Bolivia. We managed to book the last three seats on a three day tour with destination Uyuni 500 kilometers into the land of Bolivia passing right thru the desert. 

 

Early next morning we headed for the immigration of Chile to set forth into the desert. The small village and all the roads leading out of there was badly damaged by the rain and you could not do other than feel bad for the locals that were doing what they could to save their houses and all they owned. After many hours of waiting we got a go from the army that it was safe to head into the desert. Off we went to an hour later reach the boarder of Bolivia at 4500 meters. At this time I felt it was time to change the bermudas for a pair of long pants to survive the journey to come in the cold but yet breath taking landscapes. 

 

Over the days to come I came to see some of the most beautiful landscapes ever imagined. Totally surrounded by high peaks of the andes together with Flamingos on a 4X4 Jeep we drove for hours seeing places that you could not imagine that was real. We visited several different lagoons, some termal springs, saw the largest Flamingo hide away in the world, threes of stones and pure beauty of Mother Earth. The first night we spent in a small hostel without electricity and warm water awaiting the morning to come for another 10 hours by car thru the desert. 

 

Doing a ride like this leaves no one un touched of that I am sure. Myself had many thought running through my mind in good and bad but in the all of it I felt an ease in my whereabout  realizing that there is just that little that a human being needs to feel contempt. The smiles on the faces of the locals that had not much more than what they wore and seeing their conditions of living made me realize that really all you need is to be satisfied with what life is giving you at every given moment. I will remember this journey and the feeling for the rest of my life and remember what I felt every time frustration for small things are to affect me. 

 

On day two we reached a 10.000 inhabitant small village to spend the last night before our last day to come and a visit to the 80.000 hectares large salt field, the largest in the world called Salar de Uyuni. With the sun rise over the water covered fields of Bolivia once again came the feeling of calm where we sat in the car overlooking the creation of Mother Earth. 

 

All in all an absolutely fantastic journey with memories for life and landscapes to remember, some of them captured on pictures as per following…

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