01.08.2007 - 02.08.2007
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On August 1st, we had to be at the station to catch the train to Puno at 7.30, so the alarm was set for 6.30. Alan managed to arrive back from his night out just a few minutes before it went off. We packed up and took off. The train ride to Puno, on Lake Titicaca, took 10 hours, and we had lots of great views of the Andes on the way. Alan managed to get a few hours sleep, despite the stiff seats. I preferred the train, although the bus is faster, as I could read here without getting sick.
We made it to Puno, and checked into Hotel Uros near the station. We then had dinner a a really great restaurant called Ekko or something like that, on a side street to Lima which is the main tourist area. The food was really well prepared, the best meal we’ve had in a while, and the prices are already cheaper than in Cusco and Aguas Calientes.
August 2nd, we did two tours in the area around Puno. Even though Lake Titicaca for us is just the simplest way of getting to Bolivia from Cusco, we thought we might as well check out a bit of what the place has to offer before moving on. In the morning we visited the floating islands of the Uros community. They build islands out of the roots of reeds that grow in the lake, and top them with fresh reeds. These islands are literally floating on top of the lake, and so they have to anchor them to keep them put. On the islands, they have their houses etc. It was very organised and touristy, but still interesting to see the islands and walk around on them.
In the afternoon, we went to see the funerary towers at Sillustani. These towers were used for burial by pre-Inca cultures, and when the Incas arrived, they continued the custom. The tallest tower stands at 12 meters, and the stonework was again impressive.
Tired, we returned to town. We went out for dinner with two German guys whom we have been running into since Lima - everywhere we go, there they are. We tried to go to the same restaurant as the day before, but we were told that the chef had too many pisco sours, and was unable to cook. A shame. We had a meal elsewhere, and a few drinks.