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Published: August 28th 2011
Before getting to Copacabana, the journey there deserves a special mention. Apart from the usual Bolivian mass confusion of where and when to get the bus, everything was smooth, until we got to Lake Titicaca.
The main problem was that Copacabana was on the other side of the lake. Driving round would take a day at least, so the answer was to ferry the bus across. Sadly, the word ferry does not equate to a big, steel boat. Think instead of a wooden raft with an outboard motor. All the locals got off the bus and paid a few pennies to go across on a motorboat and await the bus. The gringos stayed on. Wasn’t too bad, I only thought we were going to capsize three times. Of course, all was well.
Copacabana has three purposes:
Firstly, to allow me to eat delicious trout from Lake Titicaca.
Secondly, to allow me to be dragged up a massively steep hill called Cerro Calvario. It is styled on Calvary and as you wind your way up the steep sides you pass the Stations of Christ until the top where ( out of breath and sweating profusely) you are met
by a huge black altar with a cross where burnt offerings are made to saints. All very strange. Families flock to this hill every day and old men and women bound up the slopes laden down with candles, oil, food, drink, children etc… while I am to be found collapsed below a shady boulder. Fantastic views from the top though.
Thirdly. to allow me to take a boat across Lake Titicaca to Isla del sol which is where the Incas reckon the Sun God was born. A few Egyptians may disagree with that. Anyway, after a beautiful boat trip on a boat and water, we arrived at the island. We were dropped of at the north of the island in order to walk back to the south. Not, as I hoped, along a path beside the lake, but over the top of the island in a straight line. No avoiding steep hills by making the path go round the bottom, but the path went straight over the top. Was about 5 miles and it was in the middle of the day and it was bloody hot. To balance out all these problems, Isla del Sol is the most beautiful
place in the world and I found beer at the end of the walk so all was well.
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