Now its salt, salt, salt and more......

Trip Start Jan 19, 2006
Trip End Jan 19, 2007

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Flag of Bolivia  ,
Saturday, September 2, 2006

Another day, another headache, another painkiller. Had a good breakfast though of some sweet pastry fried thing with dulche de leche which is basically caramel. As ever, my diet is going well.

Think we were all quite grateful to leave the place and drive onwards past Lake Colorado again which was more orange in the morning with white patches where it had frozen or it was salt (is sometimes difficult to tell!).

Then onto more desert like landscape and we came to the stone tree which you will never guess what it is! Then we passed a number of lovely lakes with more and more flamingoes by the last one we could get really close to them as they were calmer (according to Carlos anyway). Saw hundreds of them. Was great but by this point we were all getting a bit laked and flamingoed out! We also reached 5000m today which is pretty high and apparently as the barometric pressure was lower today it actually feels worse for humans. Nevertheless the flamingoes, foxes and seagully things we saw seemed fine!

Further north we went past an active volcano where you could see the smoke coming out and were approaching the small town of San Juan. We joked that there would be an ATM here and that we could buy alcohol etc. There were shops and you could buy alcohol plus change dollars, pesos, etc (at a poor rate) but funnily enough no ATM. Was a small and pretty basic village of cement 1 storey houses but had an amazing new basketball court for some reason.

We then drove through a smallish salt flat which was more browny than white but had train tracks running across it which was cool.

A bit further north in the dark we got to Atullcha and our salt hotel. Another thing I was looking forward to staying in a hotel completely made of salt ie walls, beds, floor,etc. It was lovely and very few people staying there. big dining room with a gritty salt floor and salt blocks and cushions to sit on. We had our own salt double bed which was lovely and it was warmer AND we had a hot shower. Heaven.

Had a lovely meal with us all relaxed and clean and preparing for an early start tomorrow despite some peoples protests!
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