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Taquile is an island on the Peruvian side of Lake Titicaca 45 km offshore from the city of Puno. About 1,700 people live on the island, which is 5.5 by 1.6 km in size (maximum measurements), with an area of 5.72 km² (...) (from Wikipedia)


      

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From Trip: My South America Journey
By: GraemeBarrow

Day 55;
Titicaca is the largest lake in the world above 2000m, and the views from both Amantaní and Taquile Islands are stunning. On our way to Taquile Island we pass the floating islands of the Uros people. The Uros began their unusual floating existence centuries ago in an effort to isolate themselves from the Colla and Inca tribes. Sadly, the Uros language has died out, and today they speak Aymara due to intermarriage
with Aymara-speakers. Today about 300 families live on the islands, however their numbers are slowly declining.

The Totora reeds that grow in the shallows of the lake are used for making everything from the islands themselves to the model boats that the islanders sell. The islands are made up of layers upon layers of reeds; as the layers closest to the water start to rot, they are replaced with fresh reeds on top. The reeds are also used to build their boats, which if constructed well will last up to 6 months.

The people of Taquile Island's unique culture, style of dress and lifestyle make for a memorable visit. The men of the community do all the knitting, as this is strictly a
male domain, while the women do the spinning. High quality, locally knitted goods are available for purchase at various cooperatives on the island. Despite the short distance that separates the two islands, Amantaní is quite distinct. Its soil is a rich terra cotta red, due to the high iron deposits, and the colour contrasts brightly with the deep
azure blue of the lake and sky and the greenery of the local crops. For the night we split into smaller groups and billet into family homes to experience their style of living first-hand.

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Posted: 02/03/2015 Updated: 05/03/2015

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