Rio was such a fun city. I stayed two weeks and nearly got stuck there forever. There is lots of urban hiking, beautiful beaches, all you can eat meat, and different neighborhoods to explore. When you go out at night, every single person in the bar knows the words to every song and sings and dances along, it is completely energizing. It was cool to see the preparations for the Olympics, and not cool to see that crime is way up preventing me from bringing my SLR with me on most days :( Check out this last post from Rio state before I headed to Bahia for a month.
From La Paz, I spent time visiting quaint Sucre, my favorite city in Bolivia. I visited dinosaur tracks (!!!) and entered the mineral mines of Potosi. Then I headed into a 4 day trip into the Salar de Uyuni. We saw lagunas, geysers, hotsprings, volcanoes, salt beds, islands and more. The diversity of landscapes within the four days was breathtaking. Geysers and hot springs was a great way to wake up Christmas morning!