Cuzco to Uyuni
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Mar 29, 2013 4:12 AM Last Post By: Leanne86
Oct 4, 2012 6:32 PM
I'm hoping to get some help getting info on what's the best route to get there, how long it tales to get to the salar and how long do you recommend to spend for tours?
What I'm thinking right now is take a bus from Cuzco to Puno, spend a day I'm the lake then heading to la Paz. From la Paz go to Uyuni (I believe I need to go through Oruro?) spend 3days there, and then figure out my way back.
Your input would be greatly appreciated. I'll be going with 2-6 more people, some Americans, some Peruvians, so language is not an option, also someone brought up the idea of renting a car and drive there from Peru, but I'm not so sure about trying that.
Oct 4, 2012 9:57 PM
1It's a fairly long way, I think about 30 hours each way. I wouldn't recommend hiring a car it's so much easier by bus and so much cheaper, probably around $30-$40 per person each way.
To get the most out of the Salar you should do a 3 day tour which should cost around 1000B all up.
To break up the trip I would recommend stopping at Puno, Copacabana and La Paz.
Flights are an option too but obviously quite expensive.
Oct 5, 2012 4:32 AM
2I agree that you should at least stop for a day or so in Copacabana and La Paz; Puno doesn't do much for me, and Copacabana's only 1 1/2 hours or so farther (and prettier, and quieter).
3 days is a good length for a Salar trip, though you should feel free to customize according to your interests. I highly recommend the Southwest Circuit through Reserva Eduardo Alvaroa and the high altiplano, which will be included in multi-day itineraries. You may also want to look into a tour leaving from Tupiza, which will have you ending at the Salar and in better shape to move on back towards La Paz. Plus the competition for seats is a little lower and I gather that the operators have a better reputation. If you're taking the train anyway, the difference between Uyuni and Tupiza is getting off the train at midnight or 4 a.m., so your plans shouldn't be too greatly effected either way.
I agree that public transport is a better option. You may also want to look into flying within Bolivia; Amaszonas has a flight between Uyuni and La Paz, which is very affordable.
Oct 5, 2012 6:30 AM
3thanks for the advice. This area looks incredible. I'm getting worried about travel times though. Looks like the 9 days i hadscheduled for the trip are not enough or barely enough. Do you think its worth it to try to squeeze lake titicaca, la paz, a 2 day tour of the salar and back to lima in 3 days?
The other option I'm looking into would be to stick around cusco/peru for the additional time and check out arequipa/colca. I feel getting to la paz is doable but them im so tempted to just keep going to the salar :-). In taht case, what's the fastest way back to Lima ? back through La Paz? or going to chile/tacna and up the coast to Lima?
Oct 5, 2012 7:24 AM
49 days is probably feasible if you fly within Bolivia and don't linger too much in La Paz.
Spending the extra time in the Sacred Valley around Cuzco is a pretty compelling option--I would gladly spend 9 days just between Cuzco and Ollantaytambo any time. Arequipa and the canyons are pretty great, so if you do decide to go for those you're hardly getting short shrift. There are lots of good day-trips around Arequipa, too, including the world's largest field of petroglyphs with some dinosaur footprints nearby. Colca Canyon also has my favorite hot spring in the Andes, just outside of Chivay (well, tied with on in the Reserva Eduardo Alvaroa, so either way you'll probably get to one of those!).
Having not tried to make that trip in a hurry, I couldn't tell you what the fastest way to Lima is with any authority, but my instinct is to say via Tacna.
Oct 7, 2012 5:50 AM
5Hi Phuerta, I am planning a similar trip in February, but I will go in the opposite direction (I am starting in La Paz, travelling around Bolivia, and then going up to Cusco). In case you want to see Arequipa, Taca.com has very good fares, about $38 one way from Arequipa to Cusco. They fly only three times per week or so, but taking the flight will speed up your trip. This fare is available for everyone, not just for Peru citizens, the way some other fares are.
Oct 8, 2012 3:42 PM
Oct 18, 2012 4:32 PM
7Thanks everyone for the info.
I'm still trying to make this trip happen. I think the overnight bus from La Paz to Uyuni, even though i hear is a pain in the ass will get me there in 12 hours.
Now im trying to find a route back to Lima. Someone told me there are buses to Tacna and to Juliaca from Uyuni. Can anyone confirm? I'm having a really hard time trying to find bus routes/schedules online for Bolivia. I'd either try to catch a bus to Peru or to Iquique and from there to Tacna
Oct 18, 2012 8:08 PM
8I doubt it, but you may contact the hotel where you will be staying to see if they have information. There is a bus to Arica from La Paz - and you can make it if you take a morning flight with TAM (which is exactly what I did). From there is a short shared taxi ride to Tacna, and the airport will be right off the highway before you get to Tacna. Having said that, there is a LAN flight form La Paz to Lima, and it will be probably not much more expensive, and a lot less hassle.
LAN flights tend to be pricey if purchased alone. However, if you purchase a flight to SA with LAN, whether as a return flight, or an open jaw flight and add the LPB-LIM flight to it, it might be at virtually no additional cost - again speaking from experience.
Mar 29, 2013 4:12 AM
I need some help with timings travelling from Cusco to Uyuni salt flats by bus...
We will be leaving Cusco on 13th Dec and need to book accommodation in advance for Christmas! We wanted to travel down a little leisurely stopping at Lake Titicaca and La Paz for couple of days...
We need to work out where we will be for Xmas eve/Xmas day...do you think we will be at the salt flats by then? I need some help knowing how long it all takes to know where to book our accommodation!
Thank you all look forward to hearing from some of you :)
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