The town of Puno is not that much to write home about, it is quite touristy and relies on the tourism related to Lake Titicaca. We did a day trip on Lake Titicaca and were actually pleasantly surprised. We had a funny and flambuoyant tour guide who did a great job of informing us about the area and the communities that live on the lake.
We first of all visited the island of Taquiles. We met an indigenous community who showed us their weaving skills (that the men actually do as well as the women) as well as other traditional customs that still exist. On the other side of the island we caught the boat from a beautiful, deserted beach. The water was too cold for either of us to do more than paddle our feet, however there was one brave(crazy?) girl in our group who indulged herself. We then visited another island, Amantani, where we had lunch cooked using the traditional method of making a hole in the ground, placing the food inside and then placing hot coals on top.
Our final stop was at one of the made-man floating reed islands. It was hard to believe these people were fully committed to living a traditional lifestyle when their reed houses contained modern televisions. However, it was amazing to see everything built from reeds, including the houses, the boats and the island itself.
Arequipa and its people have really maintained their Spanish roots, so much so that one local told us that people stated their Spanish ancestral roots when asked where they were from. Arequipa is a great place to walk around and has many interesting places to visit.
Click here for more pictures of our Peruvian adventure
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