Blogs from Medellin, Colombia, South America

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South America » Colombia » Medellin April 9th 2017

Now in the few final days in Bogota before a return home. It’s been a busy couple of weeks since Cartagena. There's still too little free time just to sit and write, so a summary will have to do: Mompox From Cartagena, went by bus south about 3 hours to Mompox, a small colonial village on the banks of the Rio Magdalena. Once strategically located, the decline of river transportation left the town isolated and declining. Though isolated in most respects, it’s been found by tourists and was a pleasant place to spend a quiet few days. One afternoon of those days was spent on a boat tour on the river for bird watching, general relaxation and a quick swim. Isolated though the town is, it draws 30,000 people to an annual jazz festival. How the ... read more
River, Mompox
Medellin from Hotel
Piedra del Penol

South America » Colombia » Medellin March 3rd 2017

Finally I took some time to write again! It’s July 2016 and it’s time to take off again, this time to Colombia. My second visit to this South American country happened thanks to a raffle I won in April during festivities in downtown Willemstad, Curaçao. First prize was a ticket to Medellín, Colombia and second prize was a ticket to San Juan, Puerto Rico. Lucky me, I won the prize by having the most amount of likes on Facebook. I really needed to get out of the island, I couldn’t wait! This ticket was a perfect opportunity not just to explore Medellín itself, but also to buy an outward ticket to another country I really wanted to visit again. Medellín is Colombia’s second largest city, beautifully located within a valley of the Colombian Andes mountains. Colombia’s ... read more
Bandeja Paisa
View for Medellín from Nutibara hill
Rush hour at the Medellín metro

South America » Colombia » Medellin February 26th 2017

Suzanne here... Although we weren't ready to leave Guatape, sadly we had to. The Medellin bus filled up very quickly, so I was glad we'd bought our tickets the previous day. It was another lovely journey with stunning scenery. We reached Terminal del Norte at 2.30pm. Given the bargainous cost, a taxi was the sensible option. But after the faff with the last guy we couldn't be bothered. We much prefer public transport and there was a metro line from the bus station to a stop ten minutes walk from our hotel. It worked really well and at 3pm we arrived at the Orange Travellers Suites. We were staying in Medellin for six nights so we'd booked an aparthotel, i.e. a room with a little kitchenette. As soon as we walked in we were happy. Clean, ... read more
Jedi graveyard? No, Plaza Cisneros
Old Palace of Justice, now a shopping centre, saved from demolition
Bombed Botero sculpture in Parque San Antonio...

South America » Colombia » Medellin September 6th 2016

Cano Crystales Cano Crystales walk 8 16 16 Cano Crystales Vẻ đẹp không tin nổi của một dòng sông( Tu Internet) Kiệt tác thiên nhiên có một không hai trên thế giới chính là dòng sông Cona Cristales thuộc khu bảo tồn quốc gia Macarena của đất nước Colombia. Người ta gọi nó với cái tên “dòng sông chảy từ thiên đường”, “dòng sông huyền thoại” hay “chốn ngâm mình của thần tiên”. Có chiều dài 100 km và cũng không quá rộng, dòng sông đã được một nhà thám hiểm khám phá từ năm 1980.img=file:///C:/Users/Admin/AppData/Local/Temp/ms... read more
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South America » Colombia » Medellin June 24th 2016

In Salento, some other backpackers enthusiastically recommended getting to the Guatape / Penol region around La Magdelena Gorge, a manmade lake about a two hour bus ride from Medellin. Through Airbnb we reserved a section of a home constructed from four used shipping containers - the building, and basically everything in the place, has been repurposed / recycled. We stopped in Peñol for supplies (it seemed like a nice enough town) and then continued on in a chivero (collective jeep) for a half an hour on bumpy dirt roads, and then by foot for the final kilometer to the house. The place was obviously pretty remote, so the highlight for me was just hiking around the area on dirt roads, chatting with the locals about the trails, and finding new vistas of the lake. The steep ... read more
Container House
Piedra de Marial
Jeeps

South America » Colombia » Medellin June 21st 2016

The 6-7 hour bus journey from Pereira to Medellin was beautiful but incredibly windy- there wasn't a single straight away until we got to the isolated valley where Medellin sprawls up the steep hillsides in a blend of traditional homes with terra cotta roofs, shelters in the poor barrios built with sheet metal, and high rise apartment buildings. It was difficult to capture it all in a photo from the valley. Medellin, the city of eternal spring (not unlike Pereira), was a comfortable place to spend some time in a city and to use as a base to get to Peñol / Guatape (see othe blog entry). While in some ways it's just as hectic as Cartagena, it's cooler, has a clean and efficient metro, and has very few tourists, except in Poblado- and even there ... read more
In a park in Poblano
Botero plaza
Gambling with Guinea Pigs

South America » Colombia » Medellin May 17th 2016

Seeing pictures of Guatape, it looked like a paradise in its own right. Tree covered mountains surrounding what looked like a mirage of blue sparking lakes and rivers encircling tiny green islands. After spending Christmas in Medellin, we wanted something a little more green and local for Chris’s birthday and new years. Coming here was one of the best decisions we could have made. Only a 2 hour bus ride from Medellin, many people opt to visit on a day trip but we could not understand the logic of this since we arrived. This place was beautiful, relaxing and charming with its small town feel but at the same time you could feel it was alive, with the buzz growing the nearer NYE drew. Our journey here was closer to the 3 hour mark due to ... read more
The rock aka La Piedra
Appreciating the view
NYE in Guatape is a lot of fun

South America » Colombia » Medellin May 10th 2016

Just like Colombia, Medellin has a lot of history...unfortunately a lot of it bad. At one point it was named the most dangerous place in the world. A stigma very hard to shake. Despite its history (again, just like Colombia) however, the people here are some of the most positive and friendliest people we've ever met. Which is probably the reason we've managed to stay in one country for so long. Medellin is a huge modern city with many boroughs stretching on for miles, surrounded by beautiful green mountains. It's a very friendly, clean and welcoming city that's not too fast paced. Most people not familiar with Colombia will probably have heard of either Bogotá (the capital) or Medellin (home to one of the richest & ruthless criminals to date:Pablo Escobar). Medellin is more than just ... read more
Having fun
It's a dogs life
Making new friends

South America » Colombia » Medellin March 9th 2016

Roughly translated the note on my pillow at my hostel last night read "flight cancellation due to problems of public order". Apparently when I was out yesterday the airline had called my hostel to inform me that my flight to Capurgana was no longer. By the time I got back and read the note the ADA-Aero office had closed. So up bright and early today to call and see what is going on I was told that all flights to Capurgana have been canceled due to a bombing and security threats compliments of the Paramilitaries and Guerrillas in the area. Nice. The sweet lady on the phone did ask if I wanted to reschedule for Tuesday...uh no thanks. It has been one bad omen after another trying to get to this area of the country. I ... read more
barrio
monarch
owl

South America » Colombia » Medellin March 6th 2016

Depending on your politics Medellin, Colombia is either famous or infamous for its most notorious drug lord Pablo Escobar. Escobar was the ruthless leader of one of the most powerful drug organizations of all time - The Medellin Cartel. Today I was to embark upon a tour of his life, properties, and the history of the man who most people associate Colombia with. Fortunately the way people perceive Colombia is changing and I believe it is tours like this one that is helping achieve this goal. I had great reservation of this tour fearing it would be some kind of folklore glorification of a man who was responsible for countless murders and bombings throughout this beautiful country. Escobar was loved by the poor and rued by the middle class and government. The poor loved him because ... read more
building
p1020313
house




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