Puno – a not so exiting city by an amazing lake.
Puno Travel Blog› entry 13 of 24 › view all entries
Our bus just left Cuzco behind us when we made the first stop. Couple of minutes later the bus stopped again. Actually we didn’t drive for more then some 20-30 minutes until the next stop. Travelling this way it would take us ages to reach Puno. Obviously we were not the only ones who were unhappy with the current situation. Some of the Peruvian passengers started to protest loudly. And when we stopped again they stamped on the floor in “double surround”. At least that was the feeling I had. Of course we joined them, showed our solidarity and stamped as well. Suddenly, when the Peruvian passengers were becoming angrier and angrier the bus driver finally gave up his “ multiple stops attitude”. I guess he was afraid they would hang him on the next tree or something.
From then on the trip continued smoothly and we could just enjoy the great view we had from the front seats on the upper bus floor. The weather was nice a shiny and the incredibly blue sky ruled above the beautiful countryside below it. The mountains and the grass we passed seemed to change colours every hour, it was just amazing.
We were maybe half way when Pavel felt something strange touching his feet. He grabbed under his seat and there was a little young dog, a little puppy. It probably belonged to some of the passengers and was on a little exploring tour now. Really cute little thing. I used to have a dog but my cockerspaniel Jamy died 2 ½ years before this trip.
We passed some 2-3 poor looking towns until we discovered ahead of us a city located by the blue waters of a huge lake. It was Puno and the lake the famous Titicaca of course. At 3.860 meters above sea level it is the world’s highest navigable lake. The city itself has some 80.000 inhabitants and is squeezed between the shores of Lake Titicaca and the small mountains surrounding Puno. While entering we realized that many houses here were half-finished. The reason wasn’t the lack of construction materials but couldn’t be more prosaic.
When we stepped out of the bus and got our big backpacks a woman approached us calling our names. The guy in Cuzco who arranged for us the accommodation there and in Aguas Calientes, had called a friend of him to “help” us in Puno. I would say he probably helped more the lady then us, but fine. We agreed quickly on the price of the accommodation and she leaded us then to a taxi. She paid the ride, nice gesture.
The hotel (not a hostel) was located pretty centrally, will be easier for us to move around.
Damn, we needed to get him something, some sort of medicine against the high altitude sickness. I asked at the reception if there was a pharmacy around and then me, Pavel and Marian got out into the streets of Puno. It didn’t take long and we found the pharmacy. The problem with the high altitude sickness, the “soroche”, is quite common in Peru , it’s not just the foreigners who have problems with it. The pharmacist offered us some red pills, I forgot the name, but it looked like they were the best you could get against soroche.
It was already getting dark when we stepped out on the street again. Puno didn’t really seem to be a nice city but there were already some streets in the center adapted to the needs of foreign tourists. There were restaurants, bars and travel agencies with English speaking stuff.
That night we went to bed early, we were supposed to be picked up for the tour already at 8am. I was so looking forward to it, the main reason was that included in the tour program was also a homestay by an Indio family on the island Amantani. Could there be something cooler then that?