After spending the night in Puno, we got up early to check out and went to Lake Titicaca for a boat ride. We had a bus booked at 2.30 to head to Bolivia (Copacabana) so only had a couple of hours on the boat tour. There are lots of islands on the Lake but the ones we went to see were floating islands. Literally. They were built on reeds and held in place by big slabs of mud and stuff, anchoroed to the lake floor. Very weird but true. They have to constantly keep rebuilding stuff, so it doesnt sink, which is why it all looked brand new (see photos). Not realising that the tour lasted an hour and the boat there and back were half and hour each, we realised that we were not going to make the bus. But we tried anyway. Running down the street after jumping off the bus and diving into a taxi, we thought we might make it to the bus station in time. But then we got t-boned (so I'm told) which is when you're driving and something else hits you side on. Lucky for me (i was sat in the side where we got hit) it was only a man on one of those bikes there pedal people around on and he was a lot worse off than me. I barely felt anything but he got a fat lip from where he hit hit own handlebars. So that was us missing ths bus. So instead we got a taxi for the 1 1/2 hour journey.
We crossed the Bolivian border (my first time walking across a border i think) and went to Copacabana where we stayed the night and had the worst meal ever. We were abit restricted on where we could eat as there was no ATM anywhere and only one of us had money so we were limited. Probably why it tasted so bad. Oh well.
After a very average night in Copacabana we checked out of our $2 a night hotel (!) and got on yet another bus to La Paz. There were only two seats left on the bus and as we left one of the boys in Copa, there was still one too many of us. Meaning that we (well I) had to sit on knees for the whole 4 hours.
We got to La Paz around 3.30 pm and decided that we wanted to go and see the prison 5 mins from our hostel. This isnt your average prison, this is San Pedro prison. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/spl/hi/picture_gallery/06/americas_inside_a_bolivian_jail/html/1.stm
Have a look at the photos on the link. It isnt illegal to go there but it isnt legal either. Anyway, not to worry you but we couldnt go inside anyway coz it was 'closed'. Id spent so much time uglying myself down as well. (Rich who we were with reminded that it probably wasnt a good idea goin in a small vest top and shorts...makes sense). So instead of the joyful prison, we went to watch wrestling. It had women and men wrestling and was all set up but was surreal and funny. Didnt do much else in La Paz as we were heading to the Salt Flats the next day.
Not really much to say about the salt flats...a lot of salt and it is flat. Quite descriptive. It took a 12 hour bus ride to get there and the roads in Bolivia are not the greatest so it was like being sat on top of a very excited washing machine for the whole way. Not good for an overnight bus when you want some sleep. To summarise, we went to the salt flats, took photos , went to see a hotel made purely of salt (the clock tower photo) and then got on a 9 hour train to the Bolivian/Argentinian border. As soon as we got off the train, we got on another 8 hour bus to Salta where we were going to meet Martin !! (my friend from back home in Bury who's been travelling for 9 months) A lot of travelling has been done in the past few days and we're appreciating beds more than every before. Argentina now so will update soon before we head off to New Zealand next week! 1 month down, 5 to go. :(
Lots of love and kisses xxxxxxxx