Island of the Sun trek (TTISLSOL)

Code: TTISLSOL Duration: 3 days
Price: Upon request
Single Room Supplement: Upon request
Technical Difficulty:
Accommodation Type:
Trek Type:
Bolivia / Titicaca
Duration Days: 3
Duration Nights: 2 nights camping
Suggested Seasons: Autumn - Winter - Spring

The original name for the Island of the Sun was ‘Titi Karka’ or ‘Titi Kachi’ meaning “The rock of the Puma”, later the Spanish distorted the name to Titicaca and adopted this name for the whole lake.

Since immemorial times the island of the Sun has drawn visitors, it used to be a mandatory destination for Tiwanaco and Inca religious pilgrimages. According to legends the Sun and the Moon detached themselves from this island after the ‘Great Flood’. Likewise the founders of the Inca Empire went out into the world from this island. We retrace the steps of the ancient pilgrims in this tour and visit the different gateways one must pass to reach the labyrinth.

On the first day we will hike a short but very scenic portion between Sampaya and the village of Yampupata to then being transfer by boat to the island, there we will also hike towards our campsite located in an idyllic beach called Wacana; on the way we will visit an Inca temple called Pilcocaina. Second day we will hike round trip to the other end of the island where we will visit another temple called Chincana.

The views of the dark-blue lake contrasting with the snow-capped mountains as a background are just breathtaking.

This program is ideal for acclimatization for other mountaineering trips like: MEROYAL, MSROYAL, TPCONDOR or TPCONDACOT.

Short Itinerary

Day 1. Transport to Sampaya. Trek & motor boat to the Island of the Sun. Camp.
Day 2. Round trip trek to Chincana. Camp.
Day 3. Boat to Yampupata. Transport to La Paz


  • Extraordinary sightseeing of the highlands, and Copacabana and the Island of the Sun at Lake Titicaca.
  • Several archaeological sites visited along of the trek, including: Pilcocaina temple and Chincana labyrinth.
  • 3 days of trekking (30km total distance).

Services Included

  • Meals mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Full land transportation during the trip.
  • Common camping equipment: 3 season tents, dinning and kitchen tents & tableware.
  • Bilingual guide during the trip.
  • Luggage transportation with porters and/or animals (15 kg/33 lb per person max weight).
  • Cook when camping.
  • National Park entrance fees.

Services Not Included

  • Transfers IN/OUT to airports.
  • International & local flight tickets & fees.
  • Meals & accommodation while in La Paz.
  • Personal camping equipment: sleeping bag, mattress, headlamps, and clothing.
  • Insurance of any kind.
  • Any expense due to a rescue operation (rescuers fee, transportation, or medical cost).

Day to day details

Day 1. Transport to Sampaya. Trek & motor boat to the Island of the Sun. Camp.

Early in the morning we leave La Paz heading towards Copacabana but we will just pass along since we will visit this town on the last day, and we will continue to Sampaya driving along of the shores of the peninsula. After leaving the vehicle, we will hike through the narrow and steep alleys of this interesting village mostly built with stone and thatch; walking along of the top of the crest towards Yampupata (the closest point between the peninsula and the Island of the Sun) will allow us splendid views of the lake and mountains beyond. It is difficult to believe that these cobalt-blue waters are almost 4km above sea level. To the east the snow-capped peaks of the Cordillera Real appear to rise out of the lake. Because of the clear sky and thin air they appear much closer than they actually are. At Yampupata we will meet our boatman who will take us across to the Island of the Sun, a short journey. Once at the island we will visit the pre-Hispanic temple of Pilcocaina - Palace, supposedly the “summer” Palace of the emperor - and walk towards our campsite located near the shores of the lake facing to the east. In the evening the snow peaks glow with the sun's setting rays.

Overnight: Camping

Day Elevations: 

La Paz: 3,650m (11,972ft)
Sampaya: 3900m (12,792ft)
Wacana: 3,830m (12,529ft)


Driving: 3-4Hrs (165km)
Walking: 4-5Hrs (10km)
Motor boat: 15-20Min (2.5km)



Day 2. Round trip trek to Chincana. Camp.

After breakfast we will hike to the north-west end of the island to visit the ruins of Chincana (the labyrinth) and the sacred rock, which was worshipped as the birthplace of the first Incas: Manco Kapac and Mama Okllo, son and daughter of Viracocha. To hike towards Chincana we will follow the highet trail almost on top of the crest of the island and to return we will follow the lower trail along of the northern shores of the island, on the way we will visit ancient terraces, many of which are still used, passing through villages and walking along sandy beaches. 

Overnight: Camping

Day Elevations: 

Island crest: 4,065m (13,333ft)
Chincana: 3,815m (12,513ft)
Wacana: 3,810m (12,497ft)


Walking: 7-8 Hrs (19km)



Day 3. Trek to Yumani. Boat to Yampupata. Transport to La Paz

Our motor boat will take us back to Yampupata where our vehicle will be waiting to take us back to Copacabana, there we will stop to visit of the town, the church, the market and – if there is time enough – to climb to “El Calvario”. On the way back to La Paz we will visit the house of Paulino Limachi; and elder reed boat constructor that worked with Thor Heyerdahl in several of his transoceanic expeditions.

Overnight: None

Day Elevations: 

Copacabana: 3,857m (12,650ft)
La Paz: 3,650m (11,972ft)


Walking: 1Hr (1.5km)
Motor boat: 30-40Min (5km)
Driving: 3-4Hrs (165km)