Isla del Sol, Lake Titicaca, Bolivia

Lake Titicaca

Situated at an extraordinary 4,000 metres above sea-level, Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world.  It is also one of the most beautiful.  

Lake Titicaca is sacred to the Aymara and Quecha people who inhabit its shores and islands. To walk along the lake edge, sail its waters or stay on the islands, is to reconnect with an unchanged past. Puno is the departure town for boat trips to the floating Uros Taquile and Amantani Islands as well as Bolivia, but also for the thrilling Andean Explorer train that journeys across the altiplano to Cusco.

Lake Titicaca, Suasi Island, Peru
Lake Titicaca, Suasi Island, Peru

Lake Titicaca

According to Andean folklore, Lake Titicaca is the birthplace of the sun. It is not difficult to imagine this legend, as the engulfing sun beats down from above and is reflected back from the deep blue lake. The dramatic mountains of the Cordillera Real also make for an impressive back-drop. The lake is an essential source of life for the people who inhabit its shores and islands and whose ancient cultures still thrive today, despite the passage of time and the encroachment of modernity.

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Uros Islands, Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru
Uros Islands, Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

Life on Los Uros

Life on the Los Uros islands revolves around the Totora reed. Each island is thought to last approximately thirty years and is consistently reinforced with fresh layers of reed to keep the spongy mass dry underfoot. The reed is also harvested to construct the distinctive and often elaborate boats, and to build homes. Totora is also life-giving, providing an essential source of food, thought to be rich in iodine, in addition to being used for temperature control and medicinal purposes.

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Arch, Taquile Island, Peru
Taquile Island, Peru

Taquile Island

Relatively untouched for over a 1000 years, the small island of Taquile is an attractive, isolated slice of rural Peru with an almost Mediterranean feel. However, the inhabitants here uphold an unusual tradition of men knitting. Each man on the island wears a “chullo”, a knitted hat with a tail that depicts both marital status and mood. If the hat is red and white, the male will be single, but if all red, married. If the tail sits to the left he is worried; to the right, happy and to the back; he’s busy. Prowess is also judged on how tightly each stitch is knitted.

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Local woman weaving textiles, Peru

Travel to Taquile Island

Admire the stunning Peruvian lake island full of handmade colourful fabrics and friendly locals.

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Traditional Reed Boats, Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

Board a Reed Boat

Embark on a trip on a traditional Peruvian boat made entirely of reeds, among the oldest known types of boats.

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View from Taquile Island, Peru

Sail on Lake Titicaca

Set sail on the highest navigable lake in the world and visit the communities on Isla Taquile.

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Sillustani, Near Puno, Lake Titicaca, Peru

Visit a Peruvian Island

Take a boat trip to Amantaní, one of Lake Titicaca’s most scenic islands and a centre of mystical ceremonies since pre-Inca times.

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Reaching the sun gate and marvelling over Machu Picchu unveiled one of the most impressive landscapes that Paul has seen in his global travels.

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If your passion is the outdoors and you are looking to delve into South American culture, Roxy recommends one of the lodge-to-lodge hiking programmes to explore the Sacred Valley and beyond. Hopping between the quiet mountain towns, meet the locals that live off the grid and immerse yourself in the welcoming spirit of Peru.

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Once again, I would like to thank James for organising our trip. Our visit to Peru was perfect. Each of the expert guides in Peru made the whole thing run like clockwork, and I cannot thank all of you enough.

Destination: Peru
Travel Expert: James

Paul put together a spectacular trip through the highlights of Peru, and no detail was missed. His recommendations for acclimatising were particularly helpful, and something no one else I spoke to had mentioned.

Destination: Peru
Travel Expert: Paul

Our trip to Colombia and Peru, organised by James, exceeded all of our expectations! We travelled initially to see our eldest son who lives in California and then decided that (while close by) we would "nip" to Peru with the aim of visiting Machu Picchu, and onward to Colombia. A spectacular and memorable trip of a lifetime.

Destinations: Colombia & Peru
Travel Expert: James

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