Lake Titicaca

Lake TiticacaStunning Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca is situated high up in the Andes Mountain Range, spread between Bolivia and Peru. It is among the highest lakes in the world at 4000 metres above sea level.  It is believed in the Andes that this lake is the birthplace of the sun.  Their islands are renowned all over the world for their beauty.

It is a mountain lake that is fed by no less than 27 inflowing rivers. It has a surface area of 3,232 square miles - amazingly huge and must be an awesome sight to behold! It is 118 miles long and 50 miles wide. It is really hard to imagine a lake that big isn't it?

It is composed of two almost completely separate sub-basins that are connected by the Strait of Tiquina.

Lake Titicaca

The Lake is fed by rainwater and also meltwater from glaciers on the Sierras. There are five major river systems that feed into the lake. They are:

  • Ramis
  • Coata
  • Llave
  • Huancane
  • Suchez No-one really seems to know where the name  for the lake comes from, but it is thought to be translated as Rock Puma because of the shape of it resembling a puma chasing a rabbit. Locally however, the Lake is known by a few different names. Because the southeast quarter of the lake is separate from the main body, the Bolivians call it Lago Huiñaymarca (Quechua: Wiñay Marka) and the larger part Lago Chucuito. In Peru, these smaller and larger parts are referred to as Lago Pequeño and Lago Grande. Interestingly, there are people living on man-made islands floating on the Lake that are known as Uros. They are artificial islands that are made from reeds found on the Lake. These artificial islands are a very popular tourist attraction and the people of the islands make their living selling their reed crafts to the tourists.  Not all of the dwellers on the lake take kindly to tourism most likely because not all of them benefit from their trade.  
  • Believe it or not, around about the year 2000, an ancient temple was discovered beneath the Lake. The temple is thought to be some 1,000 - 1,500 years old which pre-dates the Incas.

    The Incas regarded the Lake as the birthplace of their civilisation, and according to legend, the Children of The Sun emerged out of the waters. 

    The Inca people are responsible for the building of Machu Picchu - another very popular tourist attraction.
    Water boats on Lake Titicaca


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