Our luxury service Andean Explorer runs on the route between Cuzco and Lake Titicaca in Puno.
The train journey from Cusco to Puno route is impressive and the Andean Explorer Observation Car adds to your enjoyment plenty opportunities to take great pictures. On arrival be prepared for an even higher altitude and a much cooler climate.
Many areas of interest can be found in Puno and its surroundings. Take a journey to Copacabana and visit the remote towns of Juli and Pomata prior boarding the hydrofoil or hovercraft to get to the Isla del Sol where, according to legend, appeared the first Inca. After exploring the Inca ruins of the island, admire the magnificent panorama of Lake Titicaca and the Andean mountains that surround it, it continues to Huatajata for a brief stop.
You can take an excursion on the lakes to the Uros Islands(floating islands where you can buy splendid handicrafts) and Taquile Island, but must prepare for a climb of 500 steps to reach the village, although it is worth the effort just to admire the picture. Many travelers decide to stay overnight on the island with a local family, which is not a bad idea after the strenuous climb. Do not expect even toilets or water service during your stay. However, you will enjoy a truly special visit.
Another excursion is a half day visit to Sillustani and its chullpas(Pre-Columbian funeral towers) artistically located on the pristine Lake Ayumara.
Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world with a total area of 8,000 square kilometers, 170 kilometers long, and 65 wide. The lake, located between the borders of Bolivia and Peru, is dotted with dozens of islands, each with characteristics and peculiarities.
The floating islands of the Uros, whose inhabitants descend from the ancient tribes that are known in America, are characterized by typical huts made from reeds. The people of Taquile Island, still use traditional weaving techniques that tourists can learn if they decide to spend the night there and accept the customary hospitality of its inhabitants.
What we see today are only relics of what once was a large expanse of water, known to geologists as the Sea of Humboldt. This great sea used to cover what is now known as the altiplano from La Raya to Uyuni, andPoopó and Coipasa lakes in Bolivia, they are all, literally, pools left behind when sea evaporated. Both continue to be fed by rivers that are nourished by water from the glaciers of the Cordillera de los Andes.
This large expanse of water was formed due to tectonic movements. When the Nazca plate collided with the plate of the Andes, this last one was pushed and formed the Andes, the longest mountain chain in the world, and among its mountain ranges east and west, which was once the ocean floor, the plateau became covered by sea water.
Currently, the Titicaca has about 0.1% of salt content and it has already been classified as a fresh water lake. Five rivers converge in this lake and only one hasan exit, called the Desaguadero. This river carries part of the waters of Titicaca to the southeast, where the salt flats of Uyuni and Coipasa are formed, creating the Salar of Uyuni in Bolivia that continues to grow as the Lake Titicaca gets smaller.
However, the Titicaca loses most of its stream due to evaporation, in a few millennia; this process will cause the disappearance of the lake. Until recently, only eight thousand years ago, Titicaca was 10 meters deeper than its current level, and this process of extinction appears to have accelerated in recent years