Isla Del Sol – Island of the Sun

Isla Del Sol, or the Island of the Sun, is our next step in our journey through Peru and Bolivia. It is an island on one of the highest lakes in the world.


First steps on Isla Del Sol

Actually, at the beginning, we did not plan to be here, but since we were already going to Arequipa, we decided to get to know Lake Titicaca better and from Copacabana we dug a cruise to the small island of Isla Del Sol. After approx. 2 hours we arrived at the place. The island has only 14.3 km2 of area and is inhabited by approx. 2000 inhabitants who are mainly Indians.

Hostel on Isla Del Sol

There was no problem with accommodation. After leaving the boat, we were immediately surrounded by a group of touts who offer accommodation for guests. At first, a boy began to offer us rooms at a good price, but he was immediately chased away by an older guy who also spoke interestingly.

It was probably the owner of the houses, which were located near the port in a straight line. You only had to climb there, which with the height at which we were and full backpacks, was not so easy. For 30 Bolivians per person, we got one single room with a bathroom and a double, also with its own bathroom, for girls.

After receiving the keys to the rooms, we left our belongings and went upstairs to admire the views. There are quite a few restaurants, hostels and shops on the island, and yet there were not many tourists here. Most of the people we passed were local residents of the island, who carried various bags alone, or with the help of donkeys – I admire (I was already tired of carrying my Olympus and a bottle of water in my backpack).

Sunset on Titicaca

We were on the island early enough to find a good spot to admire the sunset. On the way we met a donkey and a couple of sheep, and at the very top we came across walls, piles of stones and something that resembled a stone stove. From this place we had a view of the marina on the other side of the island and Copacabana.

The sunset that is drawn on the mountains that you can see right next to us on the horizon looks like it was painted. However, a moment after sunset, it begins to make a terrible frost and you have to run away. The girls disappeared in panic, and I was left to take the last pictures before the sun completely set.

Coming back, I lost the girls and tried to shorten my way to get to the room quickly and wrap myself in a quilt. Unfortunately, several walls and fences stood in my way. The worst turned out to be an angry alpaca, who growled at me like a mad cat. I thought she would start chasing me and bite me, but luckily she quickly let go. We said goodbye in peace.

When I got to the hostel it was already total darkness. The girls arrived a moment after me. Unfortunately, apart from some snacks, we have little left to eat. We set off with flashlights (there are no lanterns on the island) hoping for an open bar or shop. We managed to find a place where we ordered two soups and with great difficulty, because of the language – a sandwich that we brought to Emilia, which fell from strength that day.

Sunrise for 15 PLN

The next day we got up at dawn to admire the sunrise. This time we didn’t have to go far because the sun was rising in front of our windows. The view and colors were so amazing that it was difficult to capture them in photos. We were a little disturbed by the trees, which were quite grown. We went a bit up the island and the problem disappeared. A quick session and we moved higher.

The sun was still rising and the island was just waking up to life. The first inhabitants began their journey with donkeys. At some point, we came across a lonely llama tied on one of the slopes to a post, where she grazed. We took a few pictures of her, and during that time we heard some children calling their mother in the house next door. She told them something, and they ran out of the house and started pointing at the lama, stretching out their hands and shouting – 2 sol! We said “english please, we don’t understand” and rolled up.

On the island, but not only there, you can often meet someone who wants to take a picture of 1-2 soles. The day before, the children also wanted to pose for us, but if we pay them – that’s why I love my Olympus with a quiet shutter.

Return by boat to Copacabana

Unfortunately, we no longer had time to spend the next evening on the island. In addition, we were running out of money in the local currency and barely enough for a return ticket by boat. Fortunately, we bargained for a small discount at the marina and managed to return to the city.

Interestingly, since our arrival, we have not met the owner of the hostel anymore. Just like other guests who asked about him. We left the keys in the door and took our belongings. You can see that here it is a little looser and time flows differently.

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Fotograf eventowy - Marcin Krokowski