Lake Titicaca is the world’s largest, excessive altitude lake and it’s straightforward to know how the Incas give credit score to Lake Titicaca for the creation of their total civilisation. Situated on the Southern A part of Lake Titicaca, Isla del Sol is taken into account by the Incas to be the birthplace of the Solar God. My greatest good friend and I have been on a tour of Bolivia and Peru with Intrepid for the ultimate month of our time in South America. We visited this tranquil island on a day journey from Copacabana and the day we spent climbing and exploring it was a welcome reduction after the craziness of La Paz!
We have been solely per week away from climbing the Inca Path to Machu Picchu and as nobody in our group had expertise climbing at altitude, a go to to Isla del Sol appeared the proper alternative. The island is simply an hour and half boat experience (roughly 40 bolivianos return) from Copacabana and has no paved roads or autos, so you might be restricted to boats and strolling. We took full benefit of the intensive community of strolling trails on the island and spent a day climbing from the North to the South of Isla del Sol.
Isla del Sol has fairly a novel panorama, one which has harsh, barren terrain that’s juxtaposed with breathtaking views and vibrant, lovely climate. The island could be very rocky and hilly and is dotted with agricultural terraces and eucalyptus timber which we discovered fairly fascinating as they’re native to and predominantly present in Australia! There may be very restricted shade on the island, so you’ll want to cowl up, pack loads of water & meals and slather your self in sunscreen because the solar could be very robust on the island, and some members of our group discovered themselves resembling lobsters that night.
Mountain climbing at altitude is a totally completely different expertise to climbing at sea stage and shouldn’t be taken flippantly, as altitude illness in critical circumstances might be lethal. It is very important acclimatise to the altitude, keep hydrated and to not bodily push your self too exhausting. I used to be at my peak health once I was travelling in South America however when climbing at altitude I, together with the vast majority of my group struggled fairly a bit. While climbing on Isla del Sol we made certain to remain hydrated, drank loads of coca tea (which helps you regulate to the altitude) and easily took our time while climbing and rested each time we wanted to.
From Cha’llapampa the place our boat docked we instantly headed up just a few hundred metres above the water stage of Lake Titicaca, strolling by way of small villages and previous numerous hills lined in agricultural terraces. There are over 80 ruins on the island, most of which date again to Incan instances and you will note a few of these throughout your hike. Of specific historic curiosity have been a sacrificial desk which is situated among the many ruins of the Temple of the Solar, the Puma Rock and the 240 stairs at Yumani within the South that lead right down to the Lake. It’s believed there was initially 1,000 steps however the majority are actually underneath water as the extent of the lake has risen over time. The ruins have been fascinating however are actually not probably the most majestic you will note in your travels by way of South America and particularly, Peru.
The hike is roughly 8km and it took us about 3-Four hours, permitting for loads of photograph stops and breaks to fight the altitude. It’s important you carry some money on you when visiting Isla del Sol as you can be charged to hike across the island, 10 Bolivians within the North, 5 Bolivianos within the South and a further 15 Bolivians to undertake the stroll from North to South. Finally this quantities to only over £Three so there isn’t a level getting fed up with the paperwork of the islanders who’ve clearly seen the money alternative from the vacationers who flock to Isla del Sol yearly.
The spotlight of climbing Isla del Sol was the spectacular views we encountered all through our hike. I’ve fantastic reminiscences of vibrant blue skies, sunshine and the dazzling blue waters of Lake Titicaca engrained in my thoughts.
We arrived on the South finish of Isla del Sol with sufficient time to loosen up, benefit from the view and tuck right into a properly deserved ice cream earlier than catching the boat round 4pm again to Copacabana. South America is a land of distinctive, ever altering landscapes and the distinctive island of Isla del Sol is actually worthy of a go to and if you’re bodily ready, we suggest climbing from North to South to see all of the island has to supply. When you’ve got time to discover additional, there are additionally various hostels, motels and guesthouses on the island.