Birdwatching in Puno and Lake Titicaca

In the department of Puno, most of the bird species that live in the Lake Titicaca National Reserve can be spotted in any of the bodies of water (lakes, pools or streams) that abound in the country's upper Andean reaches. However, birdwatchers will find it hard to come across a finer spot than this vast lake, which stretches across 8,380 square km. The common Titicaca grebe, a species which lives around the lake, is easily spotted along the shores.

An interesting archaeological site which is also a haven for birdwatchers is that of the Sillustani burial towers. This site, built on top of a hill that looks out over Lake Umayo, gives visitors the chance to glimpse most of the bird species that thrive on the highland plain, as well as unique mammal species such as the wild guinea pig (Cavia tschudii), a rodent that lives amongst the boulders that litter archaeological sites in the area.


Temperatures range widely during the day and at night. The best time to visit the area is from May to October, when days are sunny, it seldom rains and daytime temperatures reach 25°C. Nights meanwhile, are always cold (although almost never below freezing).


There are regular commercial flights to the city of Juliaca, an hour by road from Puno. Dozens of boats run from the port of Puno around the lake, touching at the various islands. Sillustani is 20 km from Puno on the road to Juliaca..

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