Puno and Islas Flotantes

Written by Nadine Zangerle on . Posted in Peru

In the bus a Peruvian spoke to me about good prices for hostels and trips and since we were six people I could bargain a good deal. We just felt a bit insecure when he wanted to bring us to the hostel personally and sell us the trip.

Nothing against the trip since the prices were reasonable but we have heard so many stories about faked taxis driving you to a remote place to rob you. So after stamping and setting foot in the next country we tried to sneak away from Max.

I felt a bit bad since the hostel he made a reservation for us confirmed with Max and we suddenly realized that he wasn’t a bad guy. But better safe than sorry. This is unfortunately in those countries here after all those scams.

We found a cheap place to eat and since we had to get up early for our day trip we went to bed early. The next morning our tour guide picked us up and with two taxis we drove down to the dock. With around 40 people we jumped on board of a slow motion boat and made our way out to the Islas Flotantes of the Uros people. 

In the Lake Titicaca there are still 100 floating island made of layers of reeds that grow in the lake. We stopped on a small island with 20 members, where actually 5 Uros greeted us. The demonstration of how they build the islands, houses and theirs boats was fascinating. The woman are very skilled in handicrafts and for sure we bought a little something after we had a 20 minute boat ride on their so called “Mercedes Benz” of their reed boats.  

Interesting to hear about the Incas and their relationship to the Japanese culture and language. Titicaca means “Rock of the Puma” in Japanese ‘Chichi-haha’ it means ‘Dad and Mom’. Our guide explained us that a lot of nouns and especially the pronunciation in Quechua is very similar than Japanese. Interesting idea.

After the floating islands we continued to the big Isla Tequile where the people wore actually the very traditional clothes of the Catalan area of Spain. Here we walked around the Plaza and the Artisan Market where men knit heads, gloves and belts. The married man wore a red hat whereas the single man wore a red-white hat. Very easy to check out the situation.

We all had lunch and afterwards walked down to the boat. The boat was amazingly slow and we arrived at 6pm in Puno. Still time left we all went out for dinner and found a great Pizza place. Our night bus was leaving at 10pm going to Cusco.

Accommodation: Hostal El Lago (Tumi 2), Jr. Cajamarca 237, Puno

Price: PEN $ 20 p. p, private room with bathroom

Comment: right in the center, we got a good deal. Breakfast is PEN 7.  Friendly and helpful staff.