“Exploration by bike across Sajama and Lauca (Bolivian Atacama), the world’s highest deserts.
Traverse of Uyuni and Coipasa, the world’s biggest salt flats”
Additional goals:
Wildlife viewing,
Andean Pre-history
Difficulty grade in BIKE: MODERATE (+)
     
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  Sun Island, Pilkokaina (P. Barrón)  
     
     
  City of stones near Curahuara (J. Villarroel)  
     
     
  Bike near Sajama (J: Villarroel)  
     
     
  Rustic church in Macaya (J. Villarroel)  
     
     
  Colourful graves in Lauca (J. Villarroel)  
     
     
  Traverse of the Salt flat of Coipasa (J. Villarroel)  
     
     
  Camping over the Salt Flat of Coipasa (J. Villarroel)  
     
     
  Entrance to the Salt Flat of Uyuni (J. Villarroel)  
     
     
  Salt flat and Tunupa volcano (Joe Klausner)  
     
     
  Walking up to the viewpoint of Tunupa volcano (J. Klausner)  
     
14 nights in hotels and lodges
8 days biking
3 nights camping
Average daily bike ride: 6 hours

Remains of disappeared oceans, the red deserts of Sajama, Uyuni and Lipez and the salt flats of Coipasa and Uyuni, all are witnesses to the giant tectonic crush between the Pacific block and the high Andes. Numerous active volcanoes rise above colourful deserts, geysers and salt fields in the southwest of Bolivia, where the flights of the pink flamingos complete an incredible natural landscape. The natural beauty and the culture of Chipayas and Carangas make this unmissable trip into a kind of “austral Tibet”. The Uyuni Salt flat has a compact, crystallized 10m salt crust that stretches more than 10500 square kilometres. Coipasa is smaller than Uyuni but equally breathtaking. The Sajama National Park is home to a rare range of wildlife including pumas, huemules, viscachas, vicuñas, guanacos, rheas and tattoos. The microclimates produce endemic polylepis trees and lepidophyllum bushes that form the highest forest in the world. We take a transfer from La Paz towards the Sajama deserts. We bike along an abandoned miner’s road, on tracks and sometimes completely off road to traverse through dunes and lava flows. Before setting off on the bike ride, we acclimatize beside the fabulous Lake Titikaka and hike on the Isla del Sol.

ITINERARY

DAY 1: ARRIVE IN LA PAZ. Reception and transfer to the hotel.

DAY 2: TOURING TO COPACABANA & TITIKAKA. Transfer. A series of cultural highlights to visit en route. Superb view of Cordillera Real. Travel by boat to the Island of Sun. Lodge.

DAY 3: HIKE ON THE ISLA DEL SOL. View the beautiful lake scenery and Incan remains. Return to Copacabana. Hotel.

DAY 4: DISCOVER COPACABANA & RETURN TO LA PAZ. Tradition and folklore in local markets, streets and the church of Copacabana. Transfer to La Paz. Hotel.

DAY 5: TO TOMARAPI. Car transfer. Visit of Pre-Inca remains, hike in lava flow canyons. Lodge.

DAY 6: EXPLORE THE NATIONAL PARK SAJAMA. Sort out the bikes whilst viewing hot springs, geysers, wildlife near lagoons and green oases. Lodge in Sajama Village.

DAY 7: BIKE TO LAGOON MACAYA AND LAUCA. The best rural churches in the Andes. Blue lakes and coloured graves. Camp.

DAY 8: BIKE TO BELLA VISTA. Salty deserts at its best. Lodge.

DAY 9: BIKE TO COIPASA. Ride on crystallised salt flat. Camp.

DAY 10: BIKE TO LAQUECA. Dunes like nowhere else. Camp.

DAY 11: BIKE TO LLICA. Exploring craters and folklore in Llica. Lodge.

DAY 12: BIKE TO COQUESA. Ride on crystallised salt flat. Giant cactuses in Isla Incawasi. Lodge.

DAY 13: ASCENT TO THE CRATER TUNUPA. Full day hike to a viewpoint and visit a cave with millenarian mommies.

DAY 14: BIKE TO COLCHANI & TRANSFER TO THE CITADEL OF UYUNI. Ride on salt flat. Viewing factories of edible salt. Car transfer to Uyuni. Hotel.

DAY 15: TO CHALLAPATA. Car transfer. Hotel

DAY 16: RETURN TO LA PAZ. Swim in hot springs and a visit of a mineralogical museum en route. Car transfer to La Paz.

DAY 17: TIWANAKU. Half day tour to visit Pre-Inca temples and palaces.

DAY 18: DEPART LA PAZ. Transfer to the airport. End of our package service.

BRING: anorak, sleeping bag, warm gloves, biking gloves, polar jacket, down jacket, bonnet, thermal underwear, mountain glasses, head torch, sun block, sun hat, biking pants, bike, helmet, and bathing suit.