Cuzco - Puno bus ride

Cusco Travel Blog

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Drive Cuzco to Puno.
Our last Peruvian bus ride!  Nope not going to miss them.  Luckily, this time we were back on Cruz del Sur, so no breakdowns or being slowly killed by toxic fumes.  We traveled from Cuzco, 10,912 feet, to Puno, 12,600 feet, so we had to do a little altitude adjustment.  Puno is the largest Peruvian city on Lake Titicaca (the highest navigatable lake in the world).  Lake Titicaca is bordered on one side by Peru and on the other side by Bolivia.  The landscape on the 6 hour journey from Cuzco to Puno was mostly mountainous grasslands, until coming upon giant Lake Titicaca.  On the bus, Kristi and I made friends with Marko, from Holland, and Silvana, from Switzerland.  Once we reached Puno the four of us broke off, but reconvened for dinner.
Band dancing around the main square.


Our first order of business, after dumping our stuff off at our hotel, was finding a way to get to our flight in Juliaca in two days time.  The airport in Juliaca is located about 45 minutes from Puno and we had to be on that flight since it was taking us back to Lima where we would connect with our flight to Seattle.  After hitting up the nice buses like Cruz del Sur, to no avail, we made our way to the tourist office.  There they directed us down the street and around the corner to some travel offices that apparently ran buses to Juliaca.  Of course, when we hunted them down they were all closed or told us that they did not provide such a service.
Band playing music on the main street.
  Tabling this quest until after we ate, Kristi and I headed for the streets with all the best restaurants.  We hadn't gone more than a block before we ran into bands upon bands of wildly dressed musicians and dancers.  There was some festival going on in Puno that turned the streets into a battle of the bands.  All night long all we saw was an endless stream of bands with dancers after bands with dancers and just having a blast jamming in the streets. 

Tearing ourselves away from the stream of musicians and dancers we resumed our food hunt only to stumble upon a late night travel agency that ran a morning shuttle from Puno to the Airport.  After grabbing a quick bite to each, and some longer shopping, we reconnected with Marko and Silvana at the town's Plaza de Armas for dinner.  We ate at this sheik, fauz-European style restaurant that served Peruvian food with a twist.  Kristi and I split Aplaca steak and mash potatoes, both of which were quite good.  Then we parted ways with our new found friends to pack our gear for Isla Taquile the next day.
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Drive Cuzco to Puno.
Drive Cuzco to Puno.
Band dancing around the main squar…
Band dancing around the main squa…
Band playing music on the main str…
Band playing music on the main st…
Drive Cuzco to Puno.
Drive Cuzco to Puno.
Drive Cuzco to Puno.
Drive Cuzco to Puno.
Dancers.
Dancers.
Marko jumping in with the band.
Marko jumping in with the band.
Kristi, Marko, Silvana and I havin…
Kristi, Marko, Silvana and I havi…
Cusco
photo by: Vlindeke