The untamed Uros

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The populated center of the Uros, part of the National Reserve of the Titicaca, is a group of 40 floating artificial islands built with totora, a plant that grows up to 4,000 meters high -either cultivated or wild- in lagoons and swampy areas of the mountains and shores of Perú.

According to chroniclers and historians, uros are recognized as the elder residents of the Collasuyo region, and some even consider them as the most ancient race in the American continent, to the point of being the survivors of a planetary cataclysm that would have occurred in a previous time to the actual civilization.

 

What has been confirmed is that they never had a cacique leader, that they fed with totora roots, in addition to fishing, and that their original language would have been the puquina, a dialect that has slowly disappeared with the imposition of aymara, the native language of the Collao’s plateau. The word “uros” originates from the aymara word “uri”, which means indomitable.

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In the island of the Uros the weather is, like in every Puno highland, dry and cold, being 20°C the maximum temperature. Rainy through the months of December and March, and sunny through April and November, although during these last two months is when the so called “frost” happens, when temperatures, due to snowfall, are lower than usual. We recommend to be dressed warmly.

In the island, there are families that offer their houses as lodging to tourist that are in search for a more engaging experience with the culture and traditions of the millenarian villagers, like fishing, hunting and the planting and harvesting of the totora; the craftwork and their chants. Located about 7 kilometers from Puno, you need to embark on a half hour journey through the grand lake Titicaca to get there. Truly a unique experience.

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