Guide to the Tourist Attractions of Lake Titicaca
Lake Titicaca is not only the highest navigable lake in the world, but also the record for the largest alpine lake in the world. I will spare you The detailed history of the origin of the water reservoir, you can still read it in Wikipedia, but I would like to add that there are several natural islands in the lake, as well as several dozen artificial islands made by the native Uro-Indians from cattails (a marshy plant resembling a calamus).
It is the floating islands that are the biggest attraction of Titicaca, as well as the Island of the Sun in natural form. While the second is already located on the territory of Bolivia, artificial islands are scattered in different parts of the lake. On the Island of the Sun and on the shores of the lake there are Inca ruins in surprisingly good condition, as well as several other tourist attractions, including the Statue of Our Lady, protector of the lake, important for Catholic pilgrims.Bolivian Copacabana. The Lake is very cold (approx. 10-11 degrees Celsius), so you probably won’t want to swim or practice other water sports.
The Island of the Sun
The most populous of them is the Island of the Sun (Isla del Sol), which plays a key role in Inca Mythology. The natives of Peru believed that this was the birthplace of the creator Viracocha, as well as the sun and the first Inca couple named Mano Capac and Mama Ocllo.
As this place is sacred to the decimated Inca people, the island is inhabited by more than a thousand Inca descendants. A visit to Isla del Sol consists mainly of admiring beautiful views (the landscape reminded me of the Greek representations of the Topos of Arcadia), visiting several local ruins and taking a short walk along one of the two available tourist routes. The easiest way to get to the island is to take a ferry or a boat that departs from Puno every few minutes.
A visit to the Island of the Sun is payable at the exit of the boat, so it is worth preparing 6 Soles in cash. Guests can also stay overnight and enjoy a traditional Indian dinner on site. Perhaps this is one of the most interesting tourist attractions of Lake Titicaca.
Islands Of Amantaní and Taquile
In fact, Amantaní and Taquile resemble The Island of the Sun in all respects. The first has a fairly large number of guest houses run by Indians, while the second houses a dozen tailors, in which you can order hand-sewn Inca national costumes. The entrance to each of them is paid (5 or 7 soles, respectively), and local residents charge an additional fee for everything, including for the use of public toilets (2 soles).
IS IT WORTH LAKE TITICACA IN PERU TO VISIT?
There is another important aspect of visiting Lake Titicaca, which I have not mentioned so far. I am referring to environmental issues that go beyond simply protecting the environment. Unfortunately, in recent years, Titicaca has been the victim of a huge natural disaster caused by Peru and Bolivia. Puno and Copacabana do not have a modern sewage treatment plant that lands almost untreated in the lake. Not only does this lead to the pass away of the local fauna and flora (I saw several decaying birds getting tangled in the rushes on the surface), but it also makes the lake … just stinky. The smell is not constant, but a cruise on Titicaca to one of the Islands can be simply unpleasant. Added to this is the problem of the heavily commercialized area and the rather unleavened Puno, a rather unpleasant image of Lake Titicaca is created.
I am not writing this to prevent you from visiting the lake or avoiding its surroundings. To be honest, I really enjoyed visiting Puno and the islands, and I ignored the above disadvantages-with pain, but still. Nevertheless, I think you have the right to fully inform yourself about local tourist attractions before planning your trip to Peru. And here Lake Titicaca is not as colorful as described in the guides… Well, that’s what you need to know before deciding on a trip to Peru!