Bolivia’s Landscapes: Surreal Spots You Need to Visit

Coloured lakes, other-worldly rock formations and stark deserts. These Bolivia landscapes are almost too surreal to be believed…. until you see them. 

Bolivia is blessed with some pretty stunning natural scenery – it doesn’t seem fair really.

From bright turquoise lakes, to dormant volcanoes and incredible rock formations, Bolivia’s landscapes are a nature-lover’s dream.

Mind. Blown. That’s pretty much the only way that I can describe the first time I visited Bolivia. From the Salar de Uyuni to the mesmerising Quebrada de Palala, it was unlike anywhere I’d ever been before.

If you’re looking for unmissable places to visit during your time in Bolivia, start with these.

Unmissable Bolivia Landscapes: At A Glance

  • The Salar de Uyuni – Bolivian Salt Flats (of course)
  • Laguna Colorada
  • Tupiza Desert
  • Quebrada de Palala
  • Laguna Verde
  • Lake Titicaca

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Looking for more Bolivia travel inspiration? Check out these handy guides. 

Laguna Colorada (The Red Lake) 

Laguna Colorada (Red Lake) Bolivia

Water so red it looks like blood – the Laguna Colorada (or the Red Lake) hints at what life could look like on another planet.

The salt waters of the lake incubate the large variety of algae that give the lake its deep colour. Those of you currently obsessing over the Planet Earth II flamingos (lets face it, who isn’t) should savour the chance to see the large number of James flamingos who thrive on the plankton in the lake. In fact, lets watch that Planet Earth II flamingo video one more time.

Quebrada de Palala

Quebrada de Palala Amazing Bolivia Landscape

The Quebrada de Palala is a short drive outside of Tupiza. Thousands of jagged formations (or fins) fill the ravine and come together to create this ethereal Bolivian landscape. The mineral-rich soil creates a rainbow of colours and an impressive sight.

Tupiza Desert

Tupiza Desert - Walk in the steps of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

A relatively quiet and sleepy town, Tupiza is best known as the start of the multi-day tours to the Salar de Uyuni. Most visitors rush through in a hurry to see the big sights and, in doing so, miss out on exploring the stark and rugged desert that surrounds the town. This is Bolivia’s wild west, one-time playground of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and very much a destination in its own right.

Laguna Verde (The Green Lake)

Laguna Verde Bolivia

The Laguna Verde is a short distance away from the Laguna Colorada. The icy green waters of this lake are backed by the inactive Licancàbar Volcano (5,868 metres).

High levels of minerals (arsenic being the most concentrated) colour the lake’s waters.

The lake changes colour when the minerals are disturbed, so it can range from barely-tinted mint to a deep turquoise depending on the conditions. It should be at the top of your South America Bucket List.

Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca
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Pictures alone can’t describe the size of Lake Titicaca but the figures will give you a good idea of the sheer scale of this lake, which straddles the border between Bolivia and Peru.

Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world. It stands at an elevation of 3,812 metres and measures 118 miles long at its longest point. The lake’s surface covers an area of 3,232 square miles. Whichever way you look at it – it’s one of the landscapes of Bolivia that shouldn’t be missed.

Want more? Check out the best things to do in Bolivia. Or read about the mind-blowing four day trip from Tupiza to Uyuni.

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4 thoughts on “Bolivia’s Landscapes: Surreal Spots You Need to Visit”

  1. Bolivia seem good option for holiday, this year but I’m very insecure that these place are disabled friendly or not because my son is physically impaired.

    1. Hi Amanda – it is gorgeous and a great destination but I understand your concerns about whether it’s disability-friendly. I don’t have much experience on that front, but I would say that it probably would take some arrangement in advance to reach more remote areas as the facilities aren’t always very good. Wishing you the very best.

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