A hidden island in a corner of Lake Titicaca, Ticonata is one of the greener islands on the lake. It has a warm microclimate that allows lush green grass to grow, crops to thrive, and many birds to be spied. In 2004 the Quechua-speaking natives of this island were nearly gone—only two families remained on the island—but a community-based project began to teach locals how to use their resources for travel tourism. Today more than a dozen families have returned and ancient island practices are being taught to younger generations. Only a small number of visitors are allowed at a time and the focus of a trip is to help families farm and fish while learning the ancient traditions of the Ticonatas.
It's typically a two-day trip that starts by visiting the floating islands, then the Capachica Peninsula and Llachon, where you can hike through an original pre-Inca path or kayak in the lake. Following a picnic lunch, you head to Ticonata eco-village where you overnight in thatched-roof
homes. After helping families farm or fish, you help prepare dinner, followed by a bonfire and native dances. In the morning you'll head two hours to Amantani Island by rustic sailboats and then back to Puno by late afternoon. Most visits need to be arranged by Edgar Adventures. A group tour is easier to book, but a private tour is an option (though expensive) as is volunteering on the island for several days.