PUNO – LAKE TITICACA
Exploring culture in Lake Titicaca
Puno is located in southeast Peru and situated on the western shores of Lake Titicaca at an altitude of 3826 meters. Lake Titicaca is the highest navigating lake in the world at 3810 meters and on the border with Peru and Bolivia. It was once the cradle of Peru’s oldest civilizations. The lake had a continuous presence of human inhabitants that began approximately around 10 000 B.C. to 8 000 B.C. and endured until the sixteen centuries with the arrival of the Incas which were characterized by different and successive Andean societies and ethnic groups. Today you can visit ancient pre-Incan civilizations such as the Uru or Uros people who make their islands, boats, and homes of totora reeds. Then continue to Taquile island known for the finest textile art renowned worldly. Spend a night with a local family in Amantani sharing cultural lifestyles. The Amantani people are farmers and fishermen. There are other islands to explore at Lake Titicaca which are less frequented by tourists. Don`t miss out on the Candelaria Festival that takes place in Puno from February 2nd to 12th. This festival is the largest and most important cultural event in honor of Virgin Candelaria, the patron of the city of Puno. The feast is full of dancing, live music, special foods, and dancers from all over Peru. From Puno you could visit the Sillustani pre- Inca tombs on your way to the airport in Juliaca or continue for 4 hours to Arequipa.