D A T C O T O U R
|HOME||South America||Central America||Falkland Islands||Antarctica||Unique
On the shores of Lake Titicaca and nestled between two hills, the town of Copacabana has long been the terminus of the overland train-bus from Cuzco and the beginning of the hydrofoil-bus service to La Paz.
It is a small town, with central plaza dominated by a Moorish style cathedral. Every Sunday in front of the Cathedral a line of cars, trucks, buses and mini-buses, all decorated with garlands of flowers, wait to be blessed by the priest for a form of spiritual insurance.
The Cathedral was built between 1610 and 1620 to accommodate the pilgrims who flocked to town when miracles began happening in he Sanctuary after the presentation of a black wooden statue of the Virgin Mary, carved in the later 1570's by Francisco Yupanqui, grandson of the Inca Tupac Yupanqui. The Virgin is know both as the Dark Virgin of the Lake or the Virgen de la Candelaria, the patron saint of Bolivia.
The Cathedral has a spacious atrium and four small chapels. The main chapel has a fine altar and there are 17th and 18th century paintings and statues in the Sanctuary.