The Man-Made, Floating Islands of Lake Titicaca


– [Narrator] Lake Titicaca is home to moveable floating islands
that were created by humans and where over 500 people
still reside today. (upbeat electronic music) Living on not so solid
ground isn’t for everyone, but a small South American
tribe in Peru, known as Uros, have created and maintained
this unique way of life. The community is made up of
roughly 70 human-made islands and one large central island,
which is the hub for the tribe. They use dried reeds that grow
along the banks of the lake and shape them into floating
platforms and boats. These platforms can be moved
from the mainland if required, which was originally a defense
strategy to escape danger. The reeds are interwoven densely to be about 80 inches thick. Large logs are attached through the reeds and anchored to the river floor. Over time the reeds tend to rot, and so they are replaced
four times each year. The community is home to
the new and old world. The reeds are used as medicine
and the flowers drunk as tea. However, the solar panels are used to help run some electrical appliances, and the central island is
home to a radio station. Until the mid-’80s, the islands
were located further out in the lake and were
inaccessible by visitors. However, after a devastating storm, the tribe as moved closer to land and started welcoming tourists to experience their way of life. (upbeat electronic music)

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