Puno is a city in southern Peru on Lake Titicaca, one of South America’s largest lakes and the world’s highest navigable body of water. A regional trading hub, the city’s also considered Peru’s “folkloric capital,” owing to its traditional festivals featuring vibrant music and dancing. Landmarks include the Andean baroque-style Puno Cathedral and the Yavari, a 19th-century steamship.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to go to Puno in Peru is from march until june and september until november, in which you have a soft or pleasant temperature.
Top Places to Visit in Puno
- Puno Cathedral
The large Catedral (cathedral), on the west side of the Plaza de Armas at the end of Jirón Lima, is the focal point of downtown Puno. The 18th-century baroque church is large, but no great shakes; the elaborate exterior is much more impressive than the spartan, spacious, chilly interior.
2. Museo Municipal Carlos Dryer
Conde de Lemos 289, is the town’s principal (but small) museum. It has a decent selection of pre-Inca ceramics and textiles, as well as mummies with cranial deformations, but the collection is not very well illuminated. The museum is open Monday through Friday from 7:30am to 3:30pm.
3. Mirador Kuntur Wasi and Huajsapata Park
For a superb view of Lake Titicaca and a vantage point that makes Puno look more attractive than it really is, climb the steep hill to Mirador Kuntur Wasi and Huajsapata Park, about 10 minutes southwest of the main square. On top is a blazing white statue of Manco Cápac, the legendary first Inca and founder of the empire. Back down below, Jirón (Pasaje) Lima is a pedestrianized mall, chock-full of shops, restaurants, and bars.
4. Lake Titicaca
South America’s largest lake and the world’s highest navigable body of water, Lake Titicaca has long been considered a sacred place among indigenous Andean peoples. The people who live in and around the lake consider themselves descendants of Mama Qota, or Sacred Mother, and they believe that powerful spirits live in the lake’s depths. According to Andean legend, Lake Titicaca — which straddles the modern border between Peru and Bolivia — was the birthplace of civilization. Viracocha, the creator deity, lightened a dark world by having the sun, moon, and stars rise from the lake to occupy their places in the sky. Lake Titicaca is a dazzling sight. Its deep azure waters seemingly extend forever across the altiplano, under the monstrously wide sky. Daybreak and sunset are particularly stunning to witness.
5. Artisans’ Market
Ttargeting tourists with all kinds of alpaca and woven woolen goods, often much cheaper those than found in Cusco and other cities.