Amantaní is one of the islands on the Peruvian side of Lake Titicaca. It's generally reached via a boat ride of about 4 hours, from Puno. Slightly less touristed than its not-too-distant neighbour of Taquile, it's a quiet island, with almost no commerce, and inhabited almost entirely by traditional farmers. I spent one night on Amantaní, staying with one of the farming families.
Farms and lakeside on Amantaní.
The people of Amantaní really are a great bunch. Each night, they throw a party for their gringo guests, complete with live music, traditional folk dancing, and family-size beverages. After dinner with our island family tonight, we were taken across the island (in the pitch dark) to the local hall, and partook in one of these nightly celebrations. If they really do this every night, then I have no idea how they keep it up: 'cause they sure do put on a good show.
After lunch with our host families, those of us from the morning's boat ride that were staying on Amantaní went on a hike to the top of the island, to observe the spectacular views afforded from the climb, and to watch the sun set over the top of the world. Lake Titicaca is closer to the sky than any other lake in the world, so it's quite a sight to behold.
Sophs is a girl who vehemently claims to be a Kiwi, but who talks with as British an accent as any I've ever heard. Hence, she is a wannabe Kiwi (Christ... aren't there better things to wanna be? :P). I met her on the boat to Amantaní this morning, along with her two friends who actually are British. She's crazy in every fiber of her being, from her outrageous comments, to her endless drinking, to her flamboyant dancing. Gotta have one like her on every ride.
The popular thing to do on the island of Amantaní, in Lake Titicaca, is to spend a night eating and sleeping with one of the local families on the island, in order to really experience life like they do. So that's what myself, Chris, and the rest of the crew from the morning's boat ride did. Myself and Chris got introduced to one of the Amantaní families, and taken to their farmhouse by the lake. We got well taken care of, and we thoroughly enjoyed our time living the simple life.