Lake Titicaca

Just over 20km from Puno, this dramatic site has an extraordinary position upon a table-topped volcanic hill surrounded by a fertile plain. Its modest number of well-preserved chullpas (funerary towers), built by the Colla, Lupaca and Inca cultures, come in both square and cylindrical shapes. You can still see the ramps used to build them. Look closely and you’ll find several monkeys, pumas and snakes carved into the structures. Go in a group and keep an eye out for muggers.

This remote place receives few visitors, which makes it both enticing and potentially dangerous for independent travelers. Thieves are known to hide behind rocks at the top of the 2km trail that leads steeply uphill from the road.

Combis (minibuses) en route to Laraqueri (S3, 30 minutes) leave from the Terminal Zonal in Puno. You can’t miss the signposted site, which is on the left-hand side of the road when facing towards Laraqueri – just ask the driver where to get off – from where it's another 20-minute walk uphill. Otherwise, the pricier options from Puno are taking a taxi (about S80 return with a one-hour wait) or a three-hour package tour (S100 per person, minimum two people).

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Lake Titicaca attractions

1. Templo de la Fertilidad

12.27 MILES

Chucuito’s principal attraction is the Templo de la Fertilidad. Its dusty grounds are scattered with large stone phalluses, some up to 1.2m in length…

2. Museo de la Coca y Costumbres

14.27 MILES

Tiny and quirky, this museum offers lots of interesting information – historical, medicinal, cultural – about the coca plant and its many uses…

3. Catedral de Puno

14.33 MILES

Puno’s baroque cathedral, on the western flank of the Plaza de Armas, was completed in 1757. The interior is more spartan than you’d expect from the well…

4. Museo Carlos Dreyer

14.35 MILES

This small museum houses a fascinating collection of Puno-related archaeological artifacts and art from pre-Inca, Inca, colonial and the Republic periods…

5. Casa del Corregidor

14.35 MILES

An attraction in its own right, this 17th-century house is one of Puno’s oldest residences. A former community center, it now houses a small fair-trade…

6. El Arco Deustua

14.75 MILES

A fairly simple arch jazzed up with adornments makes for a tourist attraction in Puno. El Arco Deustua dates from 1847 and was a tribute to those who…

7. Yavari

15.14 MILES

The oldest steamship on Lake Titicaca, the famed Yavari has turned from British gunship to a museum and recommended bed and breakfast, with bunk-bed…

8. Islas Uros

15.69 MILES

These human-made islands constructed from reeds are a fascinating half-day trip from Puno. Each islet is home to between one and ten Uros families, who…