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Lake Titicaca

 

Lake Titicaca General information:

Area: 8300 km, of which about 5,000 km ² relates to the territorial waters of Peru.

Length: 180 km.

Width: from 50 to 60 km.

Depth: average is 140-180 m maximum -304 M.

The population density on the coast: 100 persons per km ².

Average water temperature: +0 S. 11

The lake is located at an altitude of 3812 m.

It is 50 km from La Paz.

Titicaca — the largest mountain lake in freshwater, the second surface area of the lake of South America (after lake Maracaibo). The highest navigable lake on earth. Located in the Andes. The name consists of the words of the Quechua Indian language: titi – Puma and Kaka – rock.

The sea in the Andes

The size of lake Titicaca is comparable to a real sea.

It is the largest Alpine lake in the world.

The largest lake in South America located at an altitude of 3812 m above sea level and divided between two countries — Peru and Bolivia. After the defeat in the war with Chile in 1883, Bolivia lost its access to the Pacific, so rich in fish, lake Titicaca is of special importance. Between Peru and Bolivia there are regular ships, but more often on the water of the lake to meet the boats of the Indians, made of the coastal cane. The people of ur in the past several thousand years living with the shores of the lake and on the floating Islands, which the Indians weave from Tortora reeds. The same material used by fishermen of lake Titicaca for the construction of sailing vessels of the lungs. The floating island, despite its apparent ease, is extremely resilient. If they begin to settle into the water just laid on top of another layer of reeds. Ur cane is mined mainly in the North-East coast, where along the Bay of Puno stretches a wide strip of bushes of this plant.

Lake Titicaca is fed by several rivers originating in the glaciers of the Andes. Therefore, the size of the lake vary greatly depending on the temperature: the more the air warms up on the peaks of the Andes, the more water rushes down into the lake. But even then, when the warm period lasts longer than usual, there is no reason to fear that the lake may “overflow”: the excess water turn to lying just South of lake poopo..

The legacy of ancient cultures.

The area of lake Titicaca was the center of pre-Inca culture of Tiwanaku and is considered the cradle of the Inca Empire. The Indians who live here today are descendants of this ancient people.

In 1822 Simon Bolivar sailed from Peru and crossed lake Titicaca on a boat made from sugar canes. Then he could not think that the country lying on the other side of the lake, will one day bear his name. Bolivar liberated Peru and Bolivia future from the power of the Spanish colonizers met in these harsh mountain areas are rather weak resistance of the Spaniards. These locations were considered barren and “evoke sadness,” as one Spanish Governor. But once these “dull” places were the center of a highly developed ancient culture. In of Tiwanaku, on the shores of lake Titicaca, in our days you can see the remains of the ancient city, which from the V century BC to the end of the XII century BC was the capital of a great Empire. On the island of the Sun (Isla del Sol), located on lake Titicaca, is the temple, which is considered one of the main shrines of the Inca Empire.

Today in this country, live Indian peoples Uru and Aymara, the languages are officially recognized in Bolivia state. How many centuries ago and nowadays, the areas lying in the foothills of the Andes (Alti-PLANO), densely populated. This is due to only one factor — close to lake Titicaca. The Indians use the gifts of the lake in different ways: – caught fish, built reed boats and homes. In addition, the cane serves as a forage for sheep, llamas and cows, which are bred on the coast. Still, life in the Altiplano is not quite easy. Many Indians leave these places in search of happiness rush to the capital of Bolivia, La Paz.

Lake Titicaca useful information:

The Inca Empire was conquered in the early sixteenth century the troops of the Spanish conquistadors led by Francisco pisar-ro. The legend says that the will of the Incas, unknown to them has undermined the disease brought by the Spaniards from Europe. Friend version, white-skinned bearded strangers, riding on horseback, the Indians mistook for emissaries of the God Quetzalcoatl. so met them peaceful.

The Inca capital was Cuzco, located about 200 km Northwest of lake Titicaca, and who later became the most important city in colonial South America.

The complex of Copacabana in Bolivia, which became a real tourist Mecca, gave its name to the famous beach in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil).

The main attractions which make tourists strong impression, is a magnificent altar of gold and silver, and ancient paintings of the Incas.

The Indians received baptism from the hands of the Jesuits. Spanish Jesuits built around lake Titicaca dozens of churches, some of them can be seen today.

Attractions

The City Of Tiwanaku.

On the Bolivian shore — the ruins of buildings tocolumbia era.

The Church of colonial times.

The markets and towns of Puno and Copacabana.

Climate

The average annual temperature on the plateau of Altiplano +10 0 C (at night there are frosts and daytime temperatures can rise to +20 0 C). Dry winter and wet summer.