Published: September 9th 2011September 9th 2011
After waiting for a bus which never arrived, we were forced to take an expensive taxi to the Manaus airport. Three flights later, a pop in at the swish Panama airport and we landed safely in Santa Marta. Not after a couple of hours spent in Colombia´s capital, Bogota. We visited the famous Gold Museum - a world class museum. Our jaws dropped at the amount of delectable baked goods and fruit juices on street corners everywhere. We also had our first good taste of torrential downpours as we ran back to the airport for our final flight. One runway was closed due to it being struck by lightning!
Santa Marta is a small town on the Northern coast of Colombia. We were happy to catch a small minibus outside the airport, but our mood changed when halfway when a tyre burst. Fortunately it was a rear tyre and the bus driver made a business decision to keep driving!
Unfortunately, our steel stomachs have caved in. We both have a case of gastro, so have decided to take 2 days to recuperate before heading on our next big hike - the Lost City (Ciudad Perdida). It is a 5 day hike in the jungle to the ruins of the Taryona tribe, only uncovered in 1975. We have been warned numerous times of the violent nature of the mosquitoes on this hike, so have armed ourselves with toxic insect repellent (who knows, we may come back with other side effects after using this stuff).
Colombia sees very few tourists due to it´s many problems - drug trade, guerilla groups and general violence. Based on this, we were uncertain as to whether to come or not. But all who come rave about it, and so far, we can see why. There is a nice vibe here. The American influence is very easy to see - lots of english signs and labels, as well as fast food outlets Dunkin Donuts, SubWay and McDonalds.
Until our next entry, hope you are all well and enjoying the rugby!