Riddled with folklore, myths and traditional ways of living, this large body of water is the highest navigable lake in the world (which I believe means it’s the highest altitude lake that can have boats and ships on it?). It’s waters are so still, only rippling when the wind blows across, and the black depths make its surface appear strangely reflective.
Whilst the beauty and magic surrounding this lake was definitely present, there was nothing like sitting atop a boat letting the wind blow through my hair, and looking out over the large calm water, the cloudy sky stretching far and wide, appearing bigger and fuller then usual. Completely at the mercy of Mother Nature. The refreshing freedom needed to be felt after 8 hours cooped up on a night bus.
Home to the famous floating villages made of reeds, and indigenous and traditional communities that used to thrive off the life given from the lake, it seems that Uros (the name of the village) now relies heavily on tourism (or at least is set up purely for tourists these days).
We went on a half day tour out to some of the islands and it was very interesting despite the influence of tourism that has so clearly impacted on the charm of These islands.
They are also rather enjoyable to walk across as they are bouncy!
The city of Puno provides a good insight into Peruvian life – not set up for tourists , this raw and grungy (somewhat ugly) place shows some truths behind the economy of Peru. With dirty streets, jumbled buildings and a mix of interest in characters, if you’re interested in experiencing raw peru, this is the place to come.
I also suppose you can’t fall in love with every place. I didn’t love it here, but I’m definitely one for encouraging people to make their own judgements on a place – maybe you will find the hidden gems of Puno!