Part 3/10 of the Once in a lifetime trips worth flying for commences today with a bird brain idea (see what I did there).
Flamingo Season In Salar De Uyuni, Bolivia
Every November, the bright, white nothingness of Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni salt plain—and its neighboring lagoons in the Andean Plateau—is interrupted by a riot of pink, when flamingos in their hundreds flock there to breed. Three different species bedazzle the landscape as they search for algae in the red, white, and green lakes, which get their color from the salt and sediment in the water.
The chance to see the salmon-pink feathers and yellow bills of the rare James’s flamingo is a particular treat for ornithology buffs. The species was thought to be extinct until its rediscovery in the region in 1956, and can be found only in the high-altitude plains of Peru, Chile, Argentina, and Bolivia.
The terrain of the world’s largest salt flat, which covers more than 4,500 square miles at an altitude of 12,000 feet, is a surreal vision any time of year. But in spring, to see the pale expanse suddenly blush is an otherworldly sight to behold.
Salar de Uyuni is only a 45-minute flight from the capital city of La Paz. From there, you’ll set off south to observe the flamingos up close, and witness one of the world’s most striking ecosystems come to life. —Adeline Duff