Lake Titicaca the highest navigable lake in the world at a shade under 4000m! Titi being the Quechuan word for Puma and Caca being the word for drink......putting it together the lake´s name basically means "Where the Puma Comes to drink!" You can tell we were listening on some of our guided tours!
We bused from La Paz to Copacobana, the main Bolivian town (villiage is probably a more apt description) on the edge of the lake. The only real highly of the trip is when you get to the twin towns of San Pietro and San Paulo......here you get off the bus and get a boat across a narrow part of Lake Titicaca, whilst the bus drives onto a barge and floats across.
We got to Copa and found a hostel. Lonely planet was a little out of date......the wonderful views from the hostel have been obscured by new buildings, but hey at GBP 3 each a night we weren´t complaining! We decided to that we´d head to iIla del Sol the next day so we spent the afternoon walking around and by coincidence we ran into Aurian (our companion from the Salar trip)......you really couldn´t miss a
200cm giant amongst the local Bolivians. We agreed to meet up for dinner that evening. He also said that he´d run into Marion and Rob, some more guys from our Salar trip who we´d already bumped into again in Sucre and La Paz (on this part of our trip we were definitely all following a similar path). They had been on Isla Del Sol the day before and were back. So all 5 of us set out to dinner and had a nice reunion.
The next that Aurian, Ann and I headed for Isla de Sol. Aymarian legend (pre-dates Inca´s) holds Isla del Sol as the birthplace of their civilisation.....later the Inca´s adopted it as the place from where the first Inca had come. Once there we visited the Temple of the Sun, a pre-inca construction and the La Pieta Sagrada or sacred rock of Titicaca which the Aymarians believed was shaped like a Puma.....personally I couldn´t really see it and reckon that they may have imbibed a few too many coca leaves!
After the visit to the Sacred sites we walked for about 3 to 4 hours to the southern end of of the island along an
Puma Rock - Isla del Sol
The Inca´s apparently thought that this rock looked like the head of a puma. I´d like to know what the heck those guys were drinking because I´m pretty certain it wasn´t Inca Cola!
"Inca Trail"......we´d come to realise by now that there were hundreds of Inca Trails, not just the one to Macchu Picchu and figure as this travel continues we´ll encounter a few more as well! At the Southern end of the islnd we found a hostel and watched the sun go down over Lake Titicaca and enjoyed the serenity that the lake and isla Del Sol provided.
The next day it was back to Copa and then onto Puno where we caught the Andean Orient Express to Cuzco so we could hook up with our "Real Inca Trail" tour! After slumming it on buses for a few months the chance to sit, dine and travel in luxury was fantastic! We thoroughly enjoyed the 10 hour trip from Puno to Cuzco.......what a way to travel! If you want to splash out and enjoy getting from one place to another then this is the way. We had mid morning tea, 3 course lunch, cocktail making lesson, entertainment and a fashion show...probably what you´d call the poor man´s Orient Express...well not sure about poor but I´m sure cheaper anyway.
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