Reserve ahead in high season, especially if you’re chugging in on a late-night train. Only better hotels offer heating – bring a sleeping bag if you have one. In the rainy season, prices are slightly lower and it’s not as cold at night. Note that there are water rations in Uyuni year-round. Do not sleep with a propane heater in your room.

Tayka Hotels

Tayka Hoteles has three hotels along the Southwest Circuit: Tayka de Piedra, del Desierto and de Sal. They cost from about US$100 a night, with much of the money going directly to the community, making this a top choice for ecologically conscious travelers. All the Tayka hotels offer plenty of perks, such as comfortable beds with feather duvets, heaters and solar-powered hot water in the rooms, as well as restaurants serving tasty meals (such as llama steaks with quinoa and dehydrated potatoes). Hotel staff can organize intriguing local excursions to little-known points of interest.