Floating in Space: Milky Way Reflections on Mirror-Like Salt Flats

Perhaps nowhere on Earth is there a more beautiful place to take in crystal-clear views of the starlit sky than the pristine Salar de Uyuni in southwest Bolivia, which boasts a mirror-like reflective surface in some spots. The largest salt flat in the world provides an incredible setting for photographer Daniel Kordan, who traveled there in search of the darkest possible sky. Avoiding light pollution can be tough even in rural areas, but not only is this mineral-coated landscape sufficiently far from urban areas, it’s also sort of alien-like in its own right.

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In an interview with My Modern Met, Kordan says the salt flats were so dark, he couldn’t see anything at all until his eyes adjusted. Then, suddenly, the stars were underneath him as well as above. “It seemed that we floated in open space. Our spaceship is parked in a distance, and stars are blinking with blue, red and yellow colors.”

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A graduate of the Institute of Physics and Technology in Moscow, Kordan travels the world in search of the most photogenic landscapes, and judging by his portfolio as well as his increasingly popular Instagram, he’s had no trouble finding and capturing them. In addition the salt flats, the photographer has taken gorgeous photos of natural settings i Greece, New Zealand, Greenland, Tuscany, Scotland, Patagonia and many other locales. Check out his personal favorite collection of images he’s taken, replete with glaciers, ice caves, dramatic sand dunes and the aurora borealis.

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“I have been fascinated by the possibilities of photography since my early childhood,” says Kordon on his website. “I grew up at beautiful lake region under Moscow exploring wild nature, spending most of my free time in nature. I graduated the art painting school when I was a kid. Mix art, nature, constant activities and you’ll receive a summary – art of Landscape photography. Life started swirling me, pushing me into the rush. University, hard work on my quantum physics thesis, family and friends… but there is alway sa pleasure in the pathless woods: places I always returned and always admired. Nature is my inspiration, with all the beauty and variety of colors and compositions.”