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Lake Titicaca / Puno

Puno city and its lake shores will be your home when visiting Lake titicaca. A fairly simple town that thrives mostly due to Lake Titicaca tourism, Puno is nonetheless fun to visit. It is generally hailed as the capital of Peruvian folklore, and its small bars and simple restaurants are great places to chat with other travelers. Located on the Andean plateau of Peru, the Puno region is dominated by Lake Titicaca, sacred place of the Incas and home to natural and artificial islands. The city, whose full name is San Carlos de Puno, was founded in 1668 following the discovery of nearby silver mines. Prior to this, Puno had been a small stopping off place between the much larger silver mines at Potosi in Bolivia and Lima. Today, Puno is a predominately agricultural region. Its main economic activities are cultivating potatoes, barley, quinoa, as well as raising cattle, sheep, llamas and alpaca. If you're looking for Peruvian knitwear you'll find the markets in Puno have a huge selection and are probably the least expensive in Peru. Alpaca sweaters can be bought lessexpensive than in Lima or Cuzco.

Its inhabitants are proud of their Quechua and Aymara past, and their folkloric tradition that can be seen every year in the form of dances and rituals during the Candelaria festival. Some of the sights you can visit are: Lake Titicaca, Taquile Islands, Sillustani Tombs, Uros Floating Islands, Plaza de Armas, the Cathedral, La Raya Pass, Pukara Archaeological Site, Portal de Arama Muro, La Casa del Corregidor 17th Century, the Arco Deustua, Huasajpata Park and the new Mirador del Condor. There's a selection of good hotels in Puno as well as all the usual tourist services that you'd expect from a busy town. Some of the hotels available are geared towards budget travelers and others are 5 stars.