Island of the Sun Extension

tours / Adventure

Island of the Sun Extension information and booking

from
$690
  • Duration
    3 days
    Days
  • Group size
    2-16
    Persons
  • Difficulty
    Adventure touring
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Schedule Details

Summary
  • 3 day trip
  • 2 nights lodge
Equipment Required
Specialist gear required include comfortable walking shoes and day pack (a comprehensive gear list is provided in the pre-departure information provided on booking).

Highlights

  • Island of the Sun and Lake Titicaca
  • Inca ruins and Aymara Indian culture
  • Journey across the high altiplano
  • Copacabana

Tour description provided by World Expeditions

From La Paz we make our way by road and boat to the Island of the Sun, regarded as the site of birthplace of the sun and one of the most revered religious sites in the Andes. We stay at the wonderful Ecolodge La Estancia, built in the local Andean architectural style of Adobe bricks and thatched roofs. Each room enjoys incredible views of the lake and the Cordillera Real mountain range. During our stay on the island we visit the ancient palace and sacred stone as well as the many shrines and temples, the cultural museum, experience the local hospitality and a traditional Bolivian lunch (aptapi), enjoy the amazing sunrise over the lake and take leisurely strolls through the village and along the trails. On our return journey to La Paz we visit the Virgen Morena, a 500-year-old wooden statue of the Virgin Mary in the Basilica of Copacabana.

What's included

  • 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 2 dinners
  • Bilingual guide
  • 2 nights at the ecolodge la estancia
  • Private return transport from la paz to copacabana
  • Non exclusive boat trips
  • Sightseeing and site entrance fees as listed

Itinerary

Day 1 Join La Paz, drive to Copacabana, boat to Island of the Sun
Departing from La Paz, we travel north over the altiplano and parallel to the Cordillera Real of the Andes, passing Aymara villages, with parts of the road affording beautiful views of Lake Titicaca. It takes about 3-4 hours to Copacabana, an important place of pilgrimage for Catholics with its famous Black Virgin. The area was important in pre-Columbian times and was the gateway to this sacred land, with many ruins still in evidence. From Copacabana we take a boat, owned by local people, across the lake to the southern part of the Island of the Sun (1 hr). After landing near the Inca ruins at Pilkokaina, we will enjoy a typical aptapi lunch. Afterwards we will walk about one hour to the ecolodge "La Estancia". The first part is steep, providing beautiful views over the lake and the surrounding area. Then the path slopes more gently following the ridge of the hillside, passing through the Indian village of Yumani, over agricultural terraces of pre-Columbian origin. The Island of the Sun is located in the heart of Lake Titicaca which, at an altitude of 3810m (12497 ft), is the highest navigable lake in the world. Due to its natural influence complemented by the cordillera of the Andes, the Lake Titicaca area was the main centre of development of Andean civilisation. A civilisation with its roots in mythology, which describes how the first two Incas - Manco Kapac and Mama Ocllo, were born here and later went to Cusco to found the Inca empire. Many traditions are kept alive and show us what the social structure of this culture was like in the past. For example, the use of the old terraces for agriculture avoids erosion, makes better use of the steep hillsides and improves irrigation. Religion is still closely linked to nature (sun, moon, earth, mountains, storms, rain, etc.) and its effects. Finally, social traditions such as music, clothing and way of life are still maintained. Just walking its trails or admiring the landscape will transport you to ancient worlds.
Day 2 Island of The Sun tour
Rising with the sun is recommended, before taking the boat north to the Chincana ruins and the Sacred Rock (1 hr). We take a short walk to Challapampa, then boat to Challa to visit the cultural museum. The we hike uphill back to the ecolodge. The afternoon is free to relax and enjoy the peace and beauty of the area.
Day 3 Boat to Island of the Moon, visit Copacabana, trip concludes in La Paz
We walk through the village of Yumani in the Garden of the Incas, in order to take the boat to the Island of the Moon and visit the ruins. Then we boat to Copacabana and visit the famous Virgen Morena and its church, have lunch and stroll through the town. Transfer to La Paz (3-4 hrs) where trip concludes.