In this Podcast from Bolivia I head from Isla del Sol on Lake Titicaca (birthplace of the Incas) to La Paz, the capital (and highest capital city in the world), where I go on a mountain biking trip down the most dangerous road in the world – the Death road. Finally, I head to Potosi (highest city in the world), then onto the Salar de Uyuni salt flats in the south of Bolivia
This video shows the beautiful Isla del Sol (Island of the Sun) on Lake Titicaca in Bolivia, the site of the main Inca creation myth – it was here legend has it that Viracocha (the creator god) had his children Manco Kapac and Mama Ocllo spring from the lake and found Cusco and the Inca dynasty.
I took a boat to Isla del Sol from Copacabana, and walked the length of the island during the day – only 7km, but at this altitude (nearly 4,000 metres) it felt three times further!
I apologise in advance for my infantile presenting, I obviously just have no idea whatsoever.
I decided to break up the journey between Puno in Peru and La Paz, the capital of Bolivia with a stop in Copacabana and a trip to Isla del Sol (Island of the sun). Isla del Sol is the site of the main Inca creation myth – it was here legend has it that Viracocha (the creator god) had his children (the first Inca) Manco Kapac and Mama Ocllo spring from the lake and found Cusco and the Inca dynasty.
Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world at about 3,800 metres, and the waters are a beautiful blue, reflecting the sky, surrounding hills and distant snow-capped mountains. There’s something other-worldly about the whole lake Titicaca area – it’s almost as if the lake exists in a region between heaven and earth, but in neither.
Having arrived in Copacabana about three hours after leaving Puno, we stayed the night in Copacabana and caught the earliest passenger ferry the next day over to a small village called Challapampa in the North of La Isla del Sol. About 45 minutes walk North of the port, perched on a cliff with breathtaking views across the lake lie the sacred rock, and ruins of the Inca temple of the sun.
From here we spent a few hours walking about 7km South across the island towards Yumani. It may not sound far, but at this altitude, on the undulating island paths it took a good three hours with a few rest stops. The walk was truly spectacular, the views across the lake towards the mountains in the background were unforgettable.
We arrived in the small village of Yumani close to sunset, and quickly found a very cheap room (US$2) with views across the lake towards the mountains, and settled down for the night.
This video shows the bus journey between Arequipa in Peru and Puno, on the shores of Lake Titicaca.
In the video we quickly tour some of the streets of Puno before taking a boat to the floating islands on Lake Titicaca, and Taquile island. Back on dry land, we drive along the shores of the lake to the ancient ruins of Sillustani.
It begins in Colca Canyon, where I go Condor spotting before heading up to Puno (3,800m) on Lake Titicaca – the highest navigable lake in the world. At Lake Titicaca I visit the floating islands and Taquile island. Following this I get the bus to Cusco, ancient capital of the Inca empire, where I visit some of the Inca ruins around Cusco and within the Sacred Valley of the Incas – including Pisac and Ollantaytambo. I finish the podcast at Machu Picchu, perched precariously on top of Huayna Picchu and feeling highly emotional whilst looking down on the most famous of all ancient Incan ruins.