Things to do in Copacabana

Crossing the border between the two countries, Peru and Bolivia, travelers can see Copacabana. It is a town in Bolivia on the shore of Lake Titicaca. It derives its name from the patron saint of Bolivia, Virgen de Copacabana. A population of 6000 people inhabits it. The town is located between two mountains, Mount Calvario and Mount Niño Calvario. It is famous for its ancient religious history and its unpredictable climate. Therefore, visiting Copacabana should be at the top of your list of things to do in Bolivia.

Copacabana Bolivia

One of the first things to do in Copacabana is to visit the extremely beautiful and relaxing waterfront. Tourists walk around on the shore enjoying the sublime atmosphere. Water lovers who just adore the rising and falling of waves are often found swimming their hearts out as well. Travelers who would rather enjoy without soaking themselves find other forms of amusement. Cruising in the lake is another great way to enjoy the lake. Copacabana is also famous for its trout and fishing in the lake would be another great way to spend quality time here. Apart from deriving enjoyment from the Lake Titicaca, the other major things to do in Copacabana, include walking across Cerro Calvario, experiencing the religious festivals, hiking on the nearby isles and witnessing the beauty of historically important places. There are also several places offering delicious food so dining out is a great way to have a good time in Copacabana. There are also a few places to go shopping and enjoy the nightlife.

isla del sol

Copacabana offers various tourist attractions. It is a great place for the travelers who are interested in exploring historic places. There are a number of different places to visit in Copacabana. These include the magical Isla del sol, Templo del sol, La Horca del Inca, Cerro Calvario, Escalera Del Inca, Inca ruins, and the big Inca head. Lake Titicaca provides an enchanting look to the whole town. No matter where you are in the town, you can always find solace by looking at the beautiful lake encompassing Copacabana. The people of Copacabana were divided into two different clans in the 16th century. One of them was the Incas. Although they were not indigenous to Copacabana but as they thrived, they adhered to their religious practices. They called over to the Virgin Mary for help in all their misfortunes. Their religious practice made them erect the statue of Virgen de Copacabana. There is also a basilica of our Lady of Copacabana. This shrine is one of the many places to visit in Copacabana not only to see people worshipping it throughout the year but also for the religious festivals held there. Owing to the rich historic and religious background, there are many places to visit in Copacabana and it has many tourist attractions within it.


Isla Del Sol Lost City

Isla Del Sol Lost City

The largest island on Lake Titicaca with an area of 14.3 squares kilometers near Copacabana is the Isla Del Sol or the lost city. The word Isla Del sol means "the sun island". It is given this name because this place had religious importance for the Inca people, who considered it sacred to Inti, the Sun god.

The major reason for its fame is its religious importance as it was the sacred worshipping place for the Inca people. According to their history, Manco Kapak and Mama Ocllo, originator of the religion, were born here. Due to its rather significant religious history, visiting Isle Del Sol is among the most popular things to do in Bolivia.

Currently, more than 800 people occupy this island. They earn their living through fishing and tourism. The ruins are a great place for those who are thirsty to explore ancient civilizations. Visiting the Inca seminary, Chinkana (stone labyrinth), Stone Puma, the temple of Pilcocaina and the famous museum are the best things to do in Isla Del Sol. Another place to visit in Isla Del sol is the lighthouse. It offers the visitors a great spot to witness the lovely sunset on the lake.


Templo Del Sol

This is a temple near the Isla Del Sol and visiting is a great idea among things to do in Bolivia. It lies to the south of the island. If the traveler comes with a tour guide, there is a big chance that they will not be able to enjoy it completely. The reason is that this spot is usually not a guide's priority. Secondly, people are often tired from their hiking in the Isle Del Sol and are not interested in visiting it.

Although, hiking around this place requires considerable time and energy but it is totally worth it. Among the most important things to do in Templo Del Sol is exploring the temple building. The view of the amazing Lake Titicaca from the temple refreshes the soul. The pleasant weather only adds charm to an already wonderful experience.

It is an ancient religious building of the Inca. Their ancestors used to worship the god of sun in this temple. Before the discovery of the important artifacts from under the sea, which prove the stories of the Inca people to be true, not many had believed them. With these discoveries, the importance of these ancient places increased and attracted many tourists here.


La Horca del Inca

La Horca del Inca

In the 14th century BC, people from the Chiripa culture had built La Horca del Inca. They had built it as an astronomical observatory. These people were before the time of Inca civilization. When the Spanish came to it, they gave it the name by mistake. Due to its trilithic structure, they took it to be gallows built by the Inca. Therefore, they gave it the name of La Horca del Inca. Visiting it is among the necessary things to do in Bolivia especially for archaeology explorers.

It consists of two large upright rocks. Between theses rocks, Chiripa builders had placed seven horizontal slabs of rocks. These slabs are carefully put to allow the astronomers to observe the celestial bodies. Although Spanish conquerors had rendered it useless and had spared only a single rock, the place has not lost all its charm. The first of the many things to do in La Horca del Inca is to visit this once functional astronomical observatory.

Besides, the ancient history attached to the place, it also offers a lovely view of Lake Titicaca and the town of Copacabana. However, it is very difficult to reach this place and only someone who is physically fit should try it. Taking any of the local boys as a guide is also an excellent decision. In addition to showing the way, they can also provide the history and charge only a small fee 1 for their services.


Escalera Del Inca

Copacabana is full of great ancient places and another one of those is Escalera Del Inca. One of the most important things to do in Bolivia as a tourist is to visit Escalera Del Inca. Among other things to do in Escalera Del Inca is to visit the famous Yumani's spring. It is a part of the Yumani village along the Escalera Del Inca, which is a stairway.

Many legends are told about this spring. The Spaniards thought that the water of the spring keeps people young. On the other hand, the locals considered it sacred. They held to the idea that each of the three outlets of the spring gave a different moral message. But these may be just stories for all we know. The local people use it as a source of their drinking water and carry it to their homes in different utensils.

The only catch is that the staircase is quite steep and climbing it requires great stamina. Another way to cross it is to hire donkeys. Climbing these stairs of about 200m elevation needs you to pay a small amount of fee.


Inca Ruins

Inca Ruins

Held as extremely sacred by the Inca people, the Inca ruins are a site in the north of Isla Del sol. It is often known as the Inca ruins of Chinchana. According to the people of Inca, their religion was born at this spot. The religious legend attached to this place means that visiting the Inca ruins is one of the important things to do in Bolivia. According to this legend, the first ancestor of Inca was born in this place.

The Chincana is an elaborate 12th century Inca ruin. It has a few temples and a nunnery. A long time ago, the stone walls were covered in the mud plaster and it was colored in different paints. Apart from the other things to do in Inca ruins, one must not miss the dramatic fortuneteller. Even though, you may not hire the services provided by him but having a little innocent fun is not a bad idea. Many different stories are linked to this ancient place. Among these, the most famous is about powerful spirits living in the depth of the lakes and so it is considered sacred by the Inca people. These ruins are a heaven for archaeologists.


The big Inca head

Among all the things to do in Bolivia, the last is to see the big Inca head. to give a final goodbye to a legendary traveling trip. The big Inca head is in reality a big statue of a face representing a man of the Inca civilization, a civilization with an origin that still remains a mystery to all archaeologists that are still trying till today to unveil through all those stone engravings and sculptures. so there is not much information about the Big Inca Head's origins it just simply allows us to think that we are not alone after all.

There are some other fascinating statues of Inca civilization nearby and among other things to do in Copacabana, other than staring at that big Inca head cause it will pause your thoughts is to explore all those other carved statues that represent the ancient ruins of the Yumani people. The big Inca head can be seen in a street within Copacabana. the origins are vage but according to what the archaeologists and explorers found out so far is that it is the face of the Manco Kapak, the first of the Incans to start worshiping the sun.