Isla del Sol

Isla del Sol ("Island of the Sun") is the largest island on Lake Titicaca, and part of Bolivian territory. An ancient holy site of the Inca, it's easily reachable from Copacabana.

Isla del Sol with peaks of the Cordillera Real in the background
Isla del Sol
Indian women in Isla del Sol
Puerto de la Isla del Sol

Cities

Understand

Inca legend says that Viracocha, the bearded god who created the universe, emerged from the waters of Lake Titicaca and created the sun at this location.

Get in

The only conventional way to get to Isla del Sol is by boat. Numerous tour companies operate full and half-day excursions from Copacabana. You can make reservations at the agencies, or just go down to the waterfront around 8:00 or 1:00. It's also possible to catch boats from Yampupata at the northern tip of the peninsula.

Recommend leaving your large backpack with a hostel in Copacabana as getting up the inca steps in Yumani is hard work at altitude.

Get around

There are no motor vehicles on Isla del Sol. It might be possible to rent a donkey.

See

Unless you're spending the night on the island, your itinerary will be basically determined by the boat tour you arrived on. Frankly, the half-day tour is barely worthwhile as it consists only of a brief stop at the southern end and most of your time will be spent on the boat.

A full-day tour will take two hours to get from Copacabana to Cha'llapampa, two and a half hours to see the museum and make a round trip hike to the Rock of the Puma, three hours to take the boat to Isla de la Luna and back to the Inca Steps at the town of Yumani, and two hours for the ride back to Copacabana. You can also choose to hike from the Rock of the Puma back to Yumani (three hours) and catch the boat from there. (Decide on this when buying tickets, as the boat fare to Isla de la Luna adds just a bit to the cost.)

Eat

Again, Yumani has the best offerings. Challapampa could be good for lunch if you are coming with the morning boat and staying overnight on the island. Many places in Copacabana will sell you a lunch box, convinient for daytrippers. The few shops around have limited stocks, -fruits are mostly bananas and apples.

Sleep

Yumani is growing fast and already has a lot of tourist facilities. There are some basic alojamientos in Challapampa and Challa.The cheapest hospedajes start at about $2usd per night. At those prices expect basic conditions, everything is pretty clean and decent though. Camping should be possible many places.

Go next

Isla de la Luna is easiest visited from Yumani, by renting a boat.

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Wednesday, August 06, 2014. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.