Sailing Lake Titicaca
Today we sail Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world. Our privately chartered boat meets us at our hotel’s private jetty – all very convenient. Local guides, Jose and Elvis help us aboard and we cast off towards the floating islands of Uros. There are over 65 islands made from tortura reeds. Each island accommodates an extended family and we have requested a visit to the same island as last year’s tour. Fortunately our request is granted. The family we meet are so friendly and welcoming. We are greeted by music and singing and enjoy an excellent interpretation of how a floating island is built and how life goes on. We are also treated to a sail aboard a typical reed boat. Some of us take a turn at rowing and can vouch it is hard going! Back on the island we are invited to dance with the family. All in all, a very happy occasion. We will remember this island family for a long time.
We leave Uros and sail north west to the Capachica Peninsula. Largely unvisited, we dock at a small quay near the community of Llachon. We climb up the hill (which is quite an effort) to a farmstead owned by Mr Valentine. From here we walk into the village. We are hoping to visit a local school and leave some gifts for the children. Unfortunately school is out as there is no teacher today. However there are a few young children near the village square and we are able to distribute some of our gifts. An elderly lady walks into the square carrying wood for her fire. Jose our guide asks her some questions and we thank her with a gift of some bread and fruit from the local store.
Back at the farmstead Mr Valentine’s family are busy preparing our lunch. Delicious Quinoa soup, lake trout and an apple dessert, plus coca tea. Outside there are weaving demonstrations and home-made souvenirs for sale. We participate in both. This is responsible tourism!
Mid-afternoon, our private fast boat whisks us back to our hotel, just in time to beat an incoming rain storm. Perfect timing or good luck?!
A wonderful day.