Taquile Island Adventure Tours
Taquileños run their society based on community collectivism and on the Inca moral code, ama sua, ama llulla, ama qhilla (Quechua for “do not steal, do not lie, do not be lazy”). The island is divided into six sectors or suyus for crop rotation purposes. The economy is based on fishing, terraced farming, horticulture based on potato cultivation, and tourist-generated income from the approximately 40,000 tourists who visit each year.
Taquileños are known for their fine handwoven textiles and clothing, which are regarded as among the highest-quality handicrafts in Peru. Knitting is exclusively performed by males, starting at age eight. The women exclusively make yarn and weave. Taquileans also are known for having created an innovative, community-controlled tourism model, offering homestays, transportation, and restaurants to tourists. Taquileans have lost control of transportation to and from their island. Although they still benefit by selling textiles and providing meals, they have almost no control over the mass day-tourism operated by non-Taquileans. Taquileans are developing alternative tourism models, including lodging for groups, and local guides, who have recently completed a two-year training program.
Taquile has a radio station and is equipped with generators, although islanders have elected not to use them in favor of solar panels. The island has the curious distinction of being free of dogs. The natives consider dog and cat delicacies. Although chicken is eaten, it is not raised on the island due to problems with foxes.
In 2005, “Taquile and Its Textile Art” were honored by being proclaimed “Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity” by UNESCO.