Monday, October 22, 2007

Lake Titicaca and Uros Islands - 22nd October 2007

This morning, amazingly, at 6am the girls woke me up for the Islands tour and apart from feeling a little rough around the edges I was fine! They on the other hand had been up drinking and playing drinking games till 1am and were feeling the worse for wear for it!

We headed off to the port to meet our guide for the day, Edwardo, and took the boat trip out to Uros the floating Islands. Edwardo was very good but also very funny, I´m begining to think that maybe its the altitude and also perhaps the coco leaves of course!! He had so many props with which to explain everything and he was so particular in making sure everyone knew everything, he was very informative though, the guides that I´ve come accross so far have been really good at their job with amazing English and knowledge of their subject.

Out at the Uros islands there were many boats all heading in the same direction but as each island itself is very tiny with just a couple of reed houses, each boat went to a different spot so it wasn´t crowded.

Uros Islands reed boat.

The islands are floating on Lake Titicaca on cut roots of the reeds that are growing in the lake, the reed roots are cut into blocks and the islands are then built on top of them, the lake beneath the islands is about 18m and the base of the islands are about 2m. They have a very interesting culture and way of life and life on them is very basic, it´s a well worth visit out to see them though and very interesting.

After meeting with the island people and having an explaination of their culture I went out on the islands reed boat for a little cruise and were ccompanied by half the islands population and its children all dressed in their finery, some of the kids were chomping on reeds from the lake which apparently contains flouride for their teeth, they are well used to doing so though and even the tiniest of children will walk over to the reed pile and pull off a section to chew on!

Child chewing on lake reed!

Solar dish provided by the government as too many islands were going up in flames due to fires etc!

After visitng the Uros people we headed off to Isla Taquile, which is famous for the menfolk knitting tightly woven woolen hats. This island is very beautiful with some fabulous views of Lake Titicaca with Bolivia and Copacabana on the other side.
We had a stiff walk upto the Plaza which with me recovering from being sick and the others nursing a hangover wasn´t easy! We did it though and were rewarded with some more fabulous views of the lake, we then headed off to lunch and the walk down the other side of the islands for the boat trip back.

Lake Titicaca.

Lake Tititcaca also!

Lake Titicaca again!!

Back in Puno Sarah, Vicki and I headed off to dinner and a look around the main area, almost getting ripped off by a post card selling place which was inisiting I had given them half the money I had which was equating to about $40!! We won though and headed off back to the hostal for my saggy bed and smelly bathroom!

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