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Date of publishing:April 22, 2015
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Also available in the following languages:Spanish


It is estimated that this part of the Altiplano is the centre of origin of the cultivated potato. “El Collao” was the territory of the ancient Tiwanaku culture in the mid-first millennium. The region was conquered by the Inca Empire in the fifteenth century. During colonial times it was an important commercial area. In the late eighteenth century it was an important headquarters for the Rebellion of Tupac Amaru II in two phases since the search for the independence of Peru.

Today the city is known as the Folkloric Capital of Peru because of the wealth of its cultural and artistic expressions, particularly the traditional dances which are the highpoint of the celebrations held each year in February during the Fiesta of the Virgin of Candelaria, which is the biggest celebration of its kind in southern Peru.

The city of Puno is the highest city in southern Peru, at 12,629 feet (3,827 metres), and  is located in a bay on the shores Lake Titicaca. The lake has been the focal point of many of the greatest pre-Hispanic civilizations and many archaeological sites can be visited today.



At an altitude of 12.573 feet (3,810 meters), Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world and one of the largest lakes in South America. It is located on the high Andean plateau between Peru and Bolivia. The Titicaca National Reserve was established in 1978 in order to protect the flora, fauna and scenic beauty of the area, as well as to maintain the cultural traditions of the people who live around the lake shore and on the islands of the Peruvian lakeside.