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The Classic British Ships of Lake Titicaca

Photographs  Andrew King 2008

OLLANTA, built by Earle's Shipbuilding at Hull in 1930 (above and left.)

YAVARI -  - 1862 (right)


COYA built by Denny, Dumbarton in 1892

Pier with MANCO CAPAC - built in Canada - 1970.

Andrew King has submitted some pictures of classic ships on Lake Titicaca in October 2008. Situated on the Peru / Bolivian border, at 3812 metres Lake Titicaca is the highest commercially navigable lake in the world. and the largest in South America

"Yavari" was built by the James Watt Foundry, Birmingham and the iron hulls sub-contracted to The Thames Ironworks and Shipbuilding Co., builders of HMS Warrior in 1861.  The "Yavari" is now a museum at Puno and there is an excellent website

A sister ship, "Yapura" was also built by the James Watt Foundry and is still in use as a hospital ship as the BAP "Puno". It is the grey hulled ship on the right of the pier photos. It was converted to diesel in 1927/8. The dredger at the pier also looks old and possibly steam. At the left of the pier is the most recent ship, "Manco Capac", built in Canada in 1970, which does not appear to be used.

The "Yavari" and "Yapura" were shipped in parts to Peru and the parts were then carried across the Andes by mules and donkeys to Puno where they were reassembled.

The last passenger ship built for the service to Guaqui in Bolivia is the "Ollanta", built by Earle's Shipbuilding at Hull in 1930. This service probably finished in the 1980s. During my visit she was on the slipway and I have seen reports of her being in use in February 2008 but it is not clear what service is being offered. The slipway also appears to have a steam winch and steam cranes.

The final ship is the "Coya", built by Denny, Dumbarton in 1892. After some years decaying on the shore of the lake, she is now a restaurant by the slipway at Puno.


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