Published: October 31st 2010October 26th 2010
Nothing prepares you for how big this lake is. On the Bolivia-Peru border we were both expecting something more like the Solent, i.e you can wave at the people on the other side. This is really not the case. The lake is so huge that all you can see stretching out to the horizon is lake. We decided to visit it from both countries, spending a night on the Bolivian Isla del Sol before moving on to the more touristy Puno and the famous floating islands in Peru.
Isla del sol, the birthplace of the sun in Inca legend, is incredibly beautiful. It is very unspoilt with no cars or roads and watching the breathtaking sunset from our terrace at the very top of the Island was spectacular. However, getting up to this terrace was not so great. At 3800m above sea level climbing the 2000 steps with our huge packs on our backs was interesting! However, we got there with lots of teamwork and lots of breaks! Although if Ellie hears the phrase 'inca trail training' one more time Steve may have a black eye in our next blog installment! Needless to say out efforts were worth it,
and after watching the sun disappear over the lake we found a somewhere to eat the speciality; trout. All the restaurants on the island are tiny, the majority run out of family homes. We chose well, our trout was delicious. You can't beat fish that fresh.
The next day we headed for Puno to explore the floating islands, and were instantly hit by how many more tourists there are in Peru, especially from the 60+ category. Good for them, but it has to be said this is something you would never see in Bolivia.
Puno is a nice enough town but its appearance on the gringo trail is really just for it's close location to the floating islands of Uros. They were made by the Aymara people out of floating reeds to escape the constant fighting with the Incas. Many People still live on them today and our favourite fact is that when neighbours argue with each other they simply saw through the reed in between their homes and float away!
There are more photos below