Breathtaking day: my heart pounding between my ears

Track: Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia to Tilcara, Argentina


Certainly, today was a breath-taking day. In many ways. Close to Tilcara are the 14 seven coloured mountains, stunning breath-taking in their beauty. They are extra breath-taking, - literally -, when you decide to mini-hike closer to them. Hiking at 4.300 meters makes you gasp for air.

Little did I know at that moment it would get worse this same day. Just a few miles more and we will reach our hotel. The owner did notify us, it's a little rural in its location. Lovely we thought. 

Just - with a 2-meter wide car, on a curvy gravel mountain path that's only one track wide - encountering a farmer with his herd of cows and two horses - is far from funny. 

What food helps to forget about this near-death-road experience?

​​​​Day in key statistics


  • 14 coloured mountains: breathtaking view at 4300 meters altitude

  • 1.28 hours - to cross the border at Villazon, Bolivia to Argentina 

  • 589 km - distance covered

  • 8.29 hours - time in motion

Breathtaking Facts

Today's travel was breathtaking because:

  1. The amazing rocky landscapes on Bolivian and Argentina side

  2. Walking down the Mirador to the 14 coloured mountains – enjoyable. Owgh, forgot that on an altitude of 4300 meters a climb up is… well… let’s say, I noticed my heart seemed to be pumping between my ears.

  3. The off-roading we did today; rocky curvy roads with many steep U curves/turns. The road to the hotel was really something else, Jurgen enjoyed it as a little kid in the sandpit. For Cissy, well, it was a whole different kind of experience. Let’s leave it at ‘it’s an all other dimension of breathtaking’.

  4. Encounter with 3 cows and 2 horses on a 1 car wide (just) road, hm…on a road that already made me make a mental note to myself: “we should really draft our will sometime soon”.  Morbid, I know, but in that context, it made total sense.

Not the kind of Off-Road that is fun. These slopes are soggy wet ...ain't solid for a 3 tonnes car

Highlights of the day

  • Surviving the road up to the hotel. I know, it sounds a bit too Drama Queen-ish. 
    Hoeray for the Comfort Food - chips, olives, peanuts  (Cissy) and Chilled Beer (Jurgen) to wind down from a day with overwhelming load of impressions and experiences

  • Haute Cuisine dinner by charming Sandra - a true hidden gem as Chef de Cuisine. Her food by itself makes the drive up more than worthwhile. Her three course Çhefs Choice' diner was excellent, and most welcome after a long eventful day of driving

  • Herd of LLames crossing the highway. At the exactly the yellow sign: 'Be aware LLamas crossing' was placed. Such a rules obediently herd, funny...

Jurci Travel

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