Following our jungle and pampas adventures we flew back to La Paz -slept there over night and caught a 3 hour bus in the morning to Copacabana which is part of the infamous Lake Titicaca. Lake Titicaca is one of the highest navigable lakes in the world. So... besides having a great name, there is also something cool about it. We arrived to Copacabana which is on the southern section of the lake. To get there, we bused from La Paz ($45 Bolivianos). Towards the end of our journey, we had to get off the bus and onto a small boat to drive us across a small section of water. The bus made its way across via a barge. Why the Bolivian government didn't pave the road the entire way around (probably a 15 minute drive along the waters edge to avoid the water crossing) is beyond me but so are many of the other policy decisions.
The beauty of Lake Titicaca is that it is one of the largest navigable lakes in the world atop the highest altitude of 3800 meters above sea level, it borders two countries, and is just beautiful to look out onto, the sunset was
special as well. FINALLY, BLUE WATER, up until now it has always been murky brown. The town itself is quite touristy, but it definitely has a different feel compared to the other Bolivian cities and towns we have been in and Gali could finally eat fish!!!!! Trucha.
One of the beautiful things about Bolivia is the diversity, from deserts to snow capped mountains, jungles, salt lakes, and then blue lakes. We stayed at a hotel, which overlooked the lake it was quite picturesque.
Copacabana is a small town which seems to be built mainly around tourism, more so then any place we had been thus far. The streets, which lead away from the water are filled with souvenir shops, restaurants and cafes. There is also a large and beautiful church. On the back part, there is a section that is only lit by memorial candles. Eerie but interesting. The community in Copacabana and in the surrounding villages are quite religious. About once a week, people bring their cars to the church to have them blessed so they should keep running. This struck us as somewhat odd.
On one of the days, Dani wasn't feeling well so Gali and
I went paddle boating on the lake. It was relaxing and suprisingly fun. At one point, the naval officer in charge of that section of the lake screamed to us from the shore because we were going too far out. We just wanted a good view.
On our 3rd day in Copacabana, Gali and I did an excursion to the island of Isla del Sol, we took the 2 hour ferry at 8:30 to the north side, Dani was still feeling off so she stayed and the plan was to take the 1:00pm boat if she was feeling better and meet us there. We were to spend the night on the island and come back the next day. We trekked for 3 hours from the north to the south side. The scenery was magnificent. The island was warm, the lake pretty and snow covered mountains in the backdrop amazing. it was quite a workout, the altitude makes you feel as though you are running a triathlon. Gali felt as though she went on a 3 hour run. It somewhat reminded us of the Cinque Terre hike in Italy. Unfortunately, besides this walk, there is nothing on the island. This
Seth, Gali, Christy, Kendal
sucked for Dani who took the boat out to meet us at the south side and then as a good sport agreed to turn around and take the boat back since there was NOTHING to do. (and I should mention it gets REALLLLY cold at night). Restaurants La Orilla
(Av. 6 de Agosto, Copacabana, 862-2267)
La Orilla was the best restaurant we ate at in Bolivia. The owner Miguel returned to his home country of Bolivia after growing up in Washington DC. His restaurant serves amazing food!!!!!!!! And it is ridiculously inexpensive!
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