The Earth contains many marvels and amazing sights we can sometimes take for granted. Bolivia in South America has one such marvel in its salt flats. For those who don’t know, when it rains, it can turn the ground into a beautiful reflection of the skyline. NASA happened to get a shot of the flats from space and it’s just as beautiful there as it is here.
Taking to Instagram yesterday, NASA provided a photo of the salt flats from space. If you thought it was something to behold on the ground, wait until you see it now. Additionally, the organization provides a wealth of information about the location and explains why it looks the way it does.
“The world’s largest salt flat,” the caption reads. “Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni is a salt flat that for most of the year is a large expanse of white salt crust as large as 4,000 square miles (10,000 sq km). During rainy season, water can fill part of the salt flat and give it an incredible mirror-like appearance. However, in 2022 the watery mirror grew larger and lingered longer than it had for several years, which is probably related in to the La Niña event. Strong La Niñas during the rainy season are related to positive rainfall anomalies in the southern Altiplano.”
Continuing, NASA gives a reason as to why it’s a greenish hue. According to them, the discoloration could be due to a combination of runoff, volcanic sediments, and microbes or algae in the water. Considering it’s already accrued 330,000 likes as of now, I think followers agree it’s an amazing sight.
National Geographic Provided Beautiful Footage of Bolivia’s Salt Flats During the Rainy Season
If you thought Bolivia’s salt flats are pretty from space, wait until you see them on Earth. Luckily, National Geographic provided breathtaking footage of them during the rainy season last year.
In the clip, we see the ground essentially become a giant mirror of the skyline. Once a year, rain comes and transforms the landscape into what you see in the video and it’s something that must be seen to be believed. Even better is how the area looks at night.
“During the rainy season, the salt flats become one of the most magical cosmic mirrors on earth. #WelcomeToEarthSeries is now streaming on @disneyplus,” the tweet reads.
If you’re curious to learn more, AFAR reports, “When nearby lakes overflow or the area gets rain, a thin layer of water covers the expanse, transforming it into a massive reflective mirror that makes for jaw-dropping, dreamlike photos. The natural wonder has served as a valuable source of salt and lithium for Bolivia, and it has long been a hot spot for tourism in South America. There’s even a hotel built out of salt bricks: the Palacio de Sal.”