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Puno: a journey between Andean culture and natural wonders in Peru

Nestling on the shores of majestic Lake Titicaca – the cradle of the Inca Empire – Puno, nicknamed the “Capital of Peruvian Folklore”, is a city that travellers dream of, offering a captivating blend of Andean culture, history and breathtaking natural landscapes.

 

Andean history and culture

Puno, situated at an altitude of more than 3,800 metres, is steeped in rich history and tradition. In the heart of the city, on the Plaza de Armas in the historic centre, Puno Cathedral, an imposing Baroque building, is a must-see. For history buffs, a visit to the Carlos Dreyer Museum reveals a fascinating collection of pre-Columbian and colonial artefacts.

Nearby, a trip to the surrounding hills offers magnificent views of the city and Lake Titicaca from the Kuntur Wasi and Puma Uta viewpoints.

The city is also famous for its festivities, particularly in February during the Fiesta de la Candelaria, a colourful and lively festival that mixes Catholic beliefs with Andean traditions, bringing together more than 100,000 dancers and 10,000 musicians. A visit to the Museo de Costumbres is a must if you want to admire the traditional costumes, hats and masks and learn more about age-old indigenous customs.

 

Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world, is a natural wonder not to be missed. The floating islands of the Uros, built entirely of reeds, offer a unique cultural experience. Visitors can discover the traditional way of life of its inhabitants, who maintain their ancestral customs and live in harmony with their environment.

Excursions to the islands of Taquile and Amantaní are a must. They offer spectacular views and a chance to immerse yourself in traditional island life. The islands are home to high-quality textile crafts.

 

 

Puno cuisine

Puno’s cuisine reflects its rich culture and environment. Dishes such as trout from Lake Titicaca, chairo (a potato and meat soup) and pesque de quinoa are just some of the local specialities to be savoured. Visitors can also try chicha de jora, a drink of pre-Columbian origin made from fermented corn.

 

Activities and adventures

Puno offers a range of activities for nature and adventure lovers. From hikes in the surrounding hills to boat trips on Lake Titicaca, there’s always something to explore. Visitors can also take part in community tourism experiences, staying in local villages and learning directly from indigenous communities.

 

Our article: Tiwanaku, An archaeological treasure trove full of mysteries

 

Getaways in the surrounding area

The region around Puno is rich in discoveries. Travellers can explore important archaeological sites such as Sillustani, a pre-Inca cemetery with its chullpas, impressive funerary towers. The town of Lampa is also well worth a visit. Nicknamed the “pink city”, it is famous for its 17th-century church, catacombs, cave paintings and pre-Columbian remains.

 

Puno is a window onto a world where nature and culture merge in perfect harmony. It’s a place where ancient traditions meet breathtaking natural beauty, offering visitors a rich and authentic Peruvian experience. It’s a journey through time and space, an unforgettable adventure!

 

 

Photos : Peru Travel

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