Perú/Bolivia: Juliaca to La Paz – passing the lake by the north
A final fling in Perú, and passing Lake Titicaca into Bolivia and towards La Paz. Anticipation of many things crowds my mind, but we are mourning the passing of Perú. It’s been just over 2 months – long enough to just about begin to get a feel for the country and people (and currency). Thinking – “How could we return – maybe to work next time?”
In the end we managed to cut the highway riding by only day or so. In a fit of map perusal a few weeks ago we’d spotted that the main road goes round the south of Lake Titicaca and that there’s also a road round the other side. In our books, enough to make a route choice – we’d take the northern route. We were even foresighted enough to look into the border situation – just as well we did!
The actual crossing was nice and relaxed – all we saw of officialdom was the final police control point just after Tilali. They were more interested in checking up on our experiences of Peruvian cuisine (and my liking of Cusqueña Negra – a very fine beer) than exerting any muscle. To avoid a 90km round trip we’d taken a bus from Juliaca to Puno to get our Peruvian exit stuff done – also with no problems. The only stress was that we had to decide when we were actually going to cross the border so that they could put the correct date on our exit stamp.
At the other end in La Paz things were a whole lot busier – we created our own stress by getting there last thing on a Friday. The prospect of turning up on the Monday – 5 days after getting into the country and having to explain ourselves was one of the things that kept the legs going during the final day into La Paz.