Developed by a Peruvian tribe Uros on Lake Titicaca, which is located about 3000 m above sea level, to protect their people from other stronger tribes, the floating islands offers a safe refuge to the South American tribe. Made using dried reeds found across the banks to float safely on the lake, the sustainable islands can swiftly be dethatched from the mainland, in case of an alarming situation, with ease.
Refurbished to incorporate some modern amenities, the man-made system of floating domiciles are constructed on “roots,” formed by interweaving dried reeds, with a 2m thick layer, while large logs drilled to the base of the lake anchors the island with thick ropes. Comprising forty small islands around a large central one featuring a radio station to broadcast programs during the day, the homes of the island also integrates solar panels to power the electronic appliances used by the tribe. Inhabitants can answer the natures’ call in a small adjoining island, while a couple of schools are constructed to educate children.
Reeds apart from providing an eco-friendly safe refuge to the tribe also can be used for general medicinal purposes, and people brew coffee from its flowers as well. In addition, many homes have specially designated guest rooms to lodge tourists and boost tourism, which is one of the major sources of income of the Uros tribe. In short, the floating islands not only offer a safe shelter to the Peruvian tribe, but also help inhabitants earn their livelihood in a sustainable manner.