Altiplano & Lake Titicaca
The highest navigable lake in the world, Lake Titicaca is a massive body of water with borders in both Peru and Bolivia. The elevation is 3,812 m (12,507 ft), which is high enough to leave you with a headache if you’re not yet acclimated to the altitude.
There are two islands where most travelers go for a homestay: Amantaní and Taquile. They are small enough that they don’t have hotels or cars but large enough to have plenty of families to host as many travelers as arrive. There are also the famous Uros floating islands, which are smaller though they also have a homestay system.
The lake is a startling clear blue, dark from the deep blue sky above. It is shallower on the Peruvian side but goes as deep as 280 m (920 feet) on the Bolivian side. The Titicaca National Reserve harbors an astonishing variety of bird life and an endemic giant frog.
The Altiplano region stretches to the Bolivian border and also includes a piece of the Amazon rainforest in the Bahuaja-Sonene National Park.
If you are traveling by land from Bolivia, this is where you’ll arrive in Peru. If you are traveling from Cusco or Arequipa, consider if you want to access Lake Titicaca from Puno or Juliaca.