Entering into Chile, Australians are meant to pay $117 US. However; when we arrived, we didn’t have to pay anything. We expected to have to pay the fee when we left Chile but again nothing came of it. So be prepared that you may have to pay this or you could get lucky!
MAKE SURE YOU KEEP THE TICKET THAT THE CHILE BORDER CONTROL GIVES YOU! If you don’t keep this paper slip it could cause major issues. (click here to get some info)
Crossing from Chile San Pedro de Atacama to Bolivia you will be at 4,900m above sea level and at a point where Argentina, Bolivia and Chile all meet and is marked by a volcano. It’s a pretty unique thing!
The Border control that Bolivia provide is basically a tin shed in the middle of nowhere, they line you up depending on what country you are from and check your passport one at a time, pretty simple way to do things, no X-rays, body scans or bag checks…
Meals through rural Bolivia are extremely basic. If you do the 3 day salt flat 4×4 excursion do not expect anything flash.
Tourism in Bolivia hasn’t been around for long so don’t expect a lot, tour companies are very unreliable. So if you’re wanting to book a holiday into Bolivia’s Salt flats choose a well recognised group like G adventures because they have hired their own group of people to do that specific area of Bolivia. The cars used are pieces of shit, speedos didn’t work, all lights on the dash are lit up (not the good ones), and during our tour we broke down 3 times. If you want to visit the Salt Flats please do not expect to have fantastic facilities it really is bare minimum, but you do have to remember that this is how some people live in Bolivia and it really does make you see things from different perspective. All negatives aside, you get to see some pretty incredible views.
Going to the Toilet
Toilets through Bolivia are all pretty much all drop toilets other than the hostels you stay in. The usual thing in south america is paying to relieve yourself. Some toilets look real but it’s literally is just a toilet that hasn’t been plumbed and the person you pay to use it comes in after you and cleans up what you left behind… disgusting I know, but thats the world they live in.
Bring hand sanitiser with you because the chances of them having running water to wash your hands is very low. In most of the areas we stayed in they had some running water but it isn’t hot, ice cold showers… gotta love them, good way to wake you up though! One option we thought of was to bring wet wipes to at least try and clean ourselves, they worked and were probably the easiest way to clean yourself without having an ice cold shower.