Life on Lake Titicaca

Nestled between the bosom of Bolivia and Peru, Lake Titicaca will no doubt take your breath away. Besides it’s beautiful crystal blue waters, you’ll find yourself short on air considering the lake is 3800 meters above sea level, making it one of the highest lakes in the world. Canadian trout and Argentinean King Fish are just two of a variety types of fish that can be found in Lake Titicaca. But among the most interesting inhabitants of the lake are those living on the Uros Floating Islands.

On the boat to the islands, we were serenaded by some lovely pan flute

The reedy waterways of the floating islands and the women who greeted us for our visit

The floating islands made solely of reeds and reed roots. The boats needs to be remade every 3-4 months because of rotting

Constructed solely of reeds, the islands are home to over 2000 people. One meter of thick roots is used as the foundation and then about two meters of layered reeds make a lovely carpeted floor for the Uro people to go about their daily life.

We were drawn to this little floating island dweller

In the backyard of the floating islands

Besides the architectural feat that is the Uros Floating Islands, Lake Titicaca is home to a number of other islands (not man-made), including Amantani and Taquile. Both small and secluded, these two islands are bustling with local Quechua-speaking inhabitants who work together to farm and support their communities. “Don’t be lazy, don’t lie, don’t steal” are words to live by on both islands.

The farming terraces of Isla Amantani

Spending a night in with one of the local families on Amantani was a delight. We were spoiled with delicious food and warm hospitality. Lake Titicaca is one place not to be missed in Peru.

Our Isla Amantani homestay family. Grandma, Isabelle, Isabelle's Husband, and Grandpa

Our cozy bedroom at our homestay

The lunch that was prepared for us upon arrival. We started with soup and then were served fried cheese with potatoes, maize, tomatoes, and cucumbers

Grandma is helping Isabelle prepare our lunch. After every meal we were served munia tea (which smells like a hybrid of rosemary and mint) to curb the illnesses associated with altitude.

Isla Amantani was full of some very friendly characters. We were even introduced to a horse named Chocolate.

We were witnesses to a spectacular sunset at the top of the island.

At the top of the island was an Inca ruin which, when walked around 3 times, would grant you a wish

The next day on Isla Taquile, the local women wash their clothing with a smashed plant as a detergent in Lake Titicaca

On our way back to Puno, we napped on the roof of the boat and enjoyed the sunshine and views of Lake Titicaca