Arriving by Bus to Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca By Bus


Bus Company

Journey Time


Cusco – Puno

(as part of Cusco-Lima open pass)

Peru Hop



Cusco – Puno

Cruz del Sur



Lima – Puno




Arequipa – Puno

Cruz del Sur



La Paz – Puno

(through Copacabana)

Bolivia Hop


(+ border control)


La Paz – Copacabana




Copacabana – Puno

Trans Titicaca


(+ border control)


The cheapest way to reach Lake Titicaca is by taking a bus. Regardless of your itinerary, you should be able to find an easy connection: there are direct buses between Puno and major tourist cities such as Lima, Cusco, and Arequipa. If you’re coming from Bolivia, you can get to Copacabana from La Paz.

Traveling by bus is the cheapest but also the most tiresome option. If you’re coming directly from Lima, get ready for 22 to 24 hours on the bus! The journey from Cusco or Arequipa is significantly shorter but can still be exhausting.

Keep in mind also that the travel times listed by bus companies are on the more optimistic side. In reality, Peruvian and Bolivian buses are frequently delayed, so bring extra snacks and drinks if the journey takes longer than expected. Be especially prepared for delays when crossing the Peru-Bolivian border.


So… How do you make these long (and possibly also delayed) journeys tolerable? For starters, make sure to book cama or semi-cama (reclinable or semi-reclinable) seats. They are more expensive than the standard seats but worth the price on longer rides or overnight connections.

In addition to that, make sure to only travel with reputable transport companies. One of the top-rated bus companies in Peru is Peru Hop: they will pick you up from your hotel and then drop you off at the next hotel in your destination. They also speak English, which makes things a lot easier, and factors in some photo stop along the way.

But like all things tourist-friendly, Peru Hop is more expensive than local companies. Their hop-on-hop-off model forces you to buy an open ticket for several destinations at once, which might not work with your itinerary. The Peruvian companies on the cheaper side but still of decent quality include Cruz del Sur, Civa, and Oltursa.

In Bolivia, the comfortable and tourist-friendly option is Bolivia Hop (yep, you guessed it, it’s the same company as Peru Hop). Luckily, here the passes are cheaper than with their Peruvian counterpart.

You can get a La Paz – Copacabana – Puno – Cusco pass for $49 or the essential Lake Titicaca route of La Paz – Copacabana – Puno for $30. And you still get their signature hotel pick up and drop off!


Lastly, how do you stay safe while traveling by bus? You should remember several things if you want to cross Peru and Bolivia by road. Firstly, bus terminals and bus stops are heavens for pickpocketers and thieves.

Therefore, no matter how rushed and confused you are, stay vigilant and keep your money and passport safe at all times. Also, remember to take your most valued belongings with you when you leave the bus for a bathroom break. Don’t leave anything of value unattended.

Secondly, the bus journey in itself carries some risks. A common concern is drunk driving; unfortunately, that also applies to the bus drivers themselves. Don’t get on a bus with a driver who looks like they’re not fit for the job, and don’t be afraid to voice your concerns if anything dodgy happens on the road.

Also, you might want to schedule your daily trips as drunk driving is much less common than at night.

Road accidents are unfortunately common in both Peru and Bolivia, so make sure to pick a reputable travel operator and keep your eyes peeled for anything suspicious.