Altitude: 3,827m. / 12,556 ft.
Best time to visit: March – December
A landscape of contrasts generated by the Altiplano and the highest navigable lake in the world, surrounded by a fascinating living culture and traditional towns, Puno a gateway to the most famous attraction; the Lake Titicaca where one can visit the Uros on their floating reed islands; the traditional communities of the Islands of Taquile and Amantani or The pre-Inca cemetery of Sillustani.
A legend says that the first children of the Sun, Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo, emerged from the shimmering blue depths of the lake. The Sun God, Inti, bade his children to walk until they found a place where Manco Capac could sink a gold staff into the earth. This place was Cusco, where the pair settled down, and where their descendants went on to build the mighty Tahuantinsuyo, better known as the Inca Empire.
Travel to Puno and you will see Quechua and Aymara communities that continue living from the natural resources of the immense Lake Titicaca, a source of abundant freshwater trout. The Aymara culture dominates the region, both in terms of ancestry and spoken language, and spans the entire altiplano (high plateau) of Bolivia and southeastern Peru.