Blogs from Ciudad Perdida, Santa Marta, Colombia, South America


South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida April 13th 2018

Santa Marta (05/04/18-07/04/18) We flew from cloudy Bogota up to Santa Marta: a city on Colombia′s gorgeous Caribbean coast. The palm tree studded coastline and warm sea breeze was the most amazing welcome! Although not much in Santa Marta itself, most backpackers use it as a base for nearby adventures. We taxied (this time we were not getting ripped off!) from Santa Marta airport to the nearby The Dreamer Hostel - exactly as it sounds. We spent 2 days sipping coconut lemonades and sunbathing (it is around 30° celsius here) by the beautiful pool (Santa Marta's best pool according to the Lonely Planet) and organised and prepared for the challenging 4 day trek I was keen to go on called The Lost City - dragging poor Sal along with me. Deep in the Sierra Nevada de ... read more
On The Way Up
Incredible Views of the Lost City
One of The Pit Stops

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida April 9th 2018

"Gibst du mir eines deiner Armbänder?", fragte das Kogi-Mädchen und zeigte auf mein Handgelenk. Gehüllt in ein einfaches Kleid oder besser gesagt einen Lumpensack (der wohl einst einmal weiß war, diese Zeiten aber längst vergessen hatte da die Farben der Sierra Nevada Teil seiner Zierde wurden) war der einzige Schmuck den sie trug ein dünnes weißes Armband und eine bunte Perlenkette. Der Halsschmuck dient zur Unterscheidung zwischen Mädchen und Jungen, erklärten unsere Guides, da die Gesichter der Kogi-Kinder wohl kaum zu unterscheiden wären. Tatsächlich tragen hier selbst die kleinsten Mädchen auffallenden bunten Halsschmuck. Als ich den Knoten eines meiner Armbänder lockerte, traute sie ihren Augen kaum und begann nervös um mich herum zu laufen. Ich versuchte ein paar Worte mit ihr zu wechseln, allerdings konnte sie kein Spanisch verstehen und ihre große Schwester... read more
Am Weg zur Ciudad Perdida
Ausblick auf die Sierra Nevada
Komplett durchnässt nach einem heftigen Wolkenbruch

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida April 1st 2016

Ciudad Perdida, or The Lost City is the ancient political and manufacturing capital of the Tairona people. This site is believed to have been founded around 800 A.D. I read that this is about 650 years before Machu Picchu in Peru which to me is pretty impressive. Not much is known about the Tairona civilization, but they were expert craftsmen that made beautiful and intricate gold ornaments and jewelry. Something I have seen in the various gold museums in Colombia. This probably led to their demise once the Spanish arrived. The Ciudad Perdida is thought to have been abandoned by the Tairona during the Spanish conquest in the 17th Century. I was to go there and see it for myself. One four night, five day guided tour including food and water - $335. One pair Merrell ... read more
camp 1

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida February 9th 2015

Just got home and catching up on the posts I missed, had so many photos to upload I didn't want to waste my travelling time doing it. Ciudad Perdida (The Lost City) is an ancient ruin of the Tayrona people in the Sierra Nevada. I went on a 4 day trek through the jungle clad mountains to the lost city and back. We had a great group of about 20 people who all got along well by the end of the week and we also had great guides looking after us and feeding us very well. The trek wasn't easy as there were a lot of steep uphill and downhill sections but it was worth it for the amazing views along the way as you will in the pictures. The lost city itself was well worth ... read more

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida January 12th 2015

Stumbling monotonously uphill under the sun, heavy-legged and dreary-headed, ears and senses numbed and an unrelenting thirst. A similarly sorry state named Elly is swearing under her breath as she trudges up ten yards behind me. No, it isn´t 5am in Sheffield, but rather half an hour into our ascent to the Sierra Nevada jungle on the infamous Lost City trek in Colombia. Simultaneously battling the insect repellent-induced sweat slowly burning away my sight while attempting to assure Elly it ´will get easier soon´ inbetween my own intermittent hyperventilating, I started to wonder if we had bitten off more than we could chew. Contrastingly, after being dropped off in the freezing cold rain at several thousand feet on the Machu Picchu Jungle Trail with just a bike and a vague instruction from our guide ´bajo!´ (down), ... read more
A Shaman
Machu Picchu
Ciudad Perdida

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida December 14th 2014

So Cartegena... Formerly a key stronghold of the Spanish empire being the closest South American city to Spain, it has seen more then its fair share of battles - good news for a history buff such as myself. Its also mid 30s temperature wise and too hot is always better than too cold. However as a result the local economy is more tourism based with the result you have guys trying to sell you drugs every ten steps! And the weather combined with being very humid = alot of perspiration ! After the quietness of my hostel in Medellin I decided to go for the opposite in Cartegena and stayed in the always active Mamallena hostel. Immediately after getting off my 15 hour bus ride I booked a mud volcano tour leaving in the afternoon. This ... read more
Floating Away
Toucan in Minca

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida July 30th 2013

Sandwiched either side of my visa run to Venezuela, I was able to first visit the rugged interior in and around Bogota and then travel along Colombia’s Caribbean coast. The stint around Bogota saw me visit some smaller towns which were hugely enjoyable and once again showed why Colombia has been the country I have enjoyed most on my travels so far. Places like San Gil and Villa de Leyva have the potential to become household names as the popularity of Colombia increases, given their natural beauty, variety of activities and relative proximity to the capital Bogota. In fact if I was to dish out sage investment advice, it would be that starting up a top notch hostel in either of those two spots would be a sound choice…expect that someone has got there first and ... read more
Villa de Leyva
Paso del Angel
Scenic lunch spot

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida February 6th 2013

Hola amigos I havent had time to write in ages due to remote locations or staying in hostels where the internet has too many people using it and a bit patchy as a result. I spent 3 nights in San Gil. As it is the adventure capital of Colombia, I went caving to Cueva Las Vacas, the Cows Cave. So called because they only discovered it when cows got stuck in there, at least I think that is right. Anyway, I dont feel the need to go caving anymore, at one point we had to go underwater for a few seconds to go through to the main part of the cave and that was enough adventure sports for me. On Tuesdays the hostel hosts "Tejo Tuesdays". Tejo is a traditional game where 2kg weights are thrown ... read more
Botanical Gardens, San Gil

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida January 10th 2013

Obviously, before leaving Colombia I had to do something epic. Apart from one week in Semana Santa, I had only had long weekends to tour aroudn the country, so I deliberately finished all my commitments 2 weeks before my departure date, and decided that I wasn't going to leave the country with even one peso left - which is exactly what happened! Even before I went to Colombia, I knew that the main thing I wanted to do was to go on the 5 day hike to reach the Colombian Machu Pichu, an ancient Tayronan city descovered only in the 1970s and only accessible still by foot. I flew to Santa Marta, and from there met the guide who I had booked. At least that was the plan. In reality, obviously, Avianca (national airline) had lost ... read more

South America » Colombia » Santa Marta » Ciudad Perdida November 6th 2012

We arrived into santa marta with avianca who for a flight costing 40 quid and is ten times better than ryanair and this is south america. It was a very small airport we came into and both bags arrived this time which was a bonus and the customs point in the airport was pretty much non existent! We arrived at the dreamer hostel and it has been a really good point since we have been here...being lazy booking all the tours through the hostel. The next day was the start of the tour to ciudad perdida and in our group consisting of 4 germans, 3 americans, 1 dutch, 3 french and the 2 of us. This turned out to be a tough old hike across the jungle with lots of ups and downs and it was ... read more

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