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Published: January 20th 2013
January 3rd, my sister's birthday found me writing on this blog about the Chicamocha Canyon, which has been having lots of advertising on our Colombian TV stations lately, I hope you like it.
The Chicamocha Canyon
The Chicamocha Canyon is such an amazing place that it was nominated as a possible candidate within the group of 261 destinations to be named the 7 natural wonders of the world. The erosion was the culprit of this marvellous accident of nature that nothing has to envy the North American Colorado Canyon as ours is even deeper. Yeah, to be added to your trivial pursuit repertoire, the Chicamocha Canyon is the second largest in the world.
The temperature is perfect for a day out: lovely breezes and a scorching sun; Fluctuating temperatures from 11°C to 32°C from day to night accompany this amazing spectacle, and the best of all, the venue is not very far from Bucaramanga, 50 kilometres to be precise.
Chicamocha National Park
And once you are there, it is time to know why this venue is a national park and,
as the sign states, it is "a tourist destination of worldwide class" or why the 13,000 pesos ticket says "Here, you will fall in love with Santander", I love the amazing view of the park they put up on the ticket. Anyway, the park has been there for 7 years as it was inaugurated in December 2006, which was like a sort of opening to worldwide tourists as from them on, other projects saw the light of the day.
In the following lines, you will then find an account of my visit and it is up to you to decide whether to come to relax in the Chicamocha Natural Park and have a friendly contact with nature while having fun. Keep me posted!
The scenery is beautiful as you will see a set of plazas aiming to represent the popular lives of people from the region. Hard to retain all the names but some are, the "Plaza del Comercio, de las Hormigas", etc. The latter was coined after somebody standing on the Monument to Santander Pride remarked that people in the square looked as if they were ants. See, that´s our Colombian humour. You
Extreme sports and geographical faults
That's our Colombia, a paradise for lovers of these sports
will also admire the Monument to the Santandereanidad, a tiny museum where you can see objects used by the Guanes and I heard that there is also an ice rink, which was not there when I went.
There are also some nice parks where you can admire and even feed the animals gathered in corrals: the Goat Park or the Ostrich Park, which actually features non-native animals as they were brought from Peru; these gigantic animals and their eggs are definitely an attraction not to be missed, if you have not seen them before. A cure for adrenaline or a pain for those vertigo sufferers?
As this geographical accident is located in an area known for its extreme sports diversity, the park offers a paradise for lovers of these sports: For beautiful views of the canyon, you can choose either ziplining, paragliding or helicopter rides.Ziplining areas of 450 meters long portrays a different view of the Canyon; if you are fond of Paragliding, this is the excuse for doing it while admiring the amazing scenery the park has to offer; you can have these wonderful sights while talking on a helicopter.
good walkers, they can enjoy potholing, mountain climbing, camping, bushwalking with plenty of trails. For the water lovers, canoeing, kayaking and rafting would also take them through the not-for-me rapids of the Chicamocha river.
And for those safer tourists, they can enjoy an entire cross of the Canyon at only 10,000 pesos; this is a 6.3 km-long aerial tramway with 38 cabins and 3 stations, which is the longest in South America, linking the mountain range with Mesa de los Santos (see entry) and Ruitoque
. The ride lasts for 20 minutes and, apart from showing you the splendor of the whole canyon, it takes you through three different climates, amazing. Starting from the Sation Mesa de los Santos, you can have access to three stations: in the park, next to ther river and at Vereda el Tabacal. The Monument to Santanderean Culture
The big highlight is the monument that actually portrays an important event called the Countrymen Revolution or "La Revolución de los Comuneros", a revolution that has been passed down from parents to children:
In 1781, Spain decided that the Crown's expenses should
be paid by the Colonies. However, the residents of those colonies were quite tired of paying so much and once, a woman from El Socorro called Manuela Beltran, on behalf of the countrymen, tore the paper posted on the walls protesting for that subvention. After this actually surprising move, the revolters travelled to Santafe de Bogota to protest officially. The Archbishop Góngora promised them that those taxes would be eliminated, but obviously, this was a false agreement; as a result, people kept on protesting and the officials murdered the leader of the protest, Jose Antonio Galan. To scare the whole lot, his remains were exhibited during 30 days in different parts of the country.
So, there you have it, 35 sculptures accompany a work of art commemorating the Manuela Beltran´s revolt
I believe part of the success of the park also stems from the fact that it was done in such a way that it offers recreation activities for the whole family. The park features the Museo Guane, Plaza de las Costumbres and the Salón de Exposiciones. Children can have a good time using
the skating rink or the karts circuit.
What to eat?
Typical food like "el mute santandereano, carne oreada, pepitoria, el cabro y la arepa" are there to make you taste something different you shouldn´t miss.
A gift for you
I want to give you a prize for reading my entries and this is a video of a goat being born at the Chicamocha Canyon, it is worth watching it and admire how wonderful nature is. Enjoy it!!! Verdict
A paradise-like canyon, with a majestic scenery should be one of the places not to be missed in our charming Colombia. This is the ocassion for you to prove that geographical accidents are a blessing. So, get your shorts and trainers ready and head to this paradise, but hey, you need to protect yourself from the accompanying sun.
Last but not least, the park is open every day including holidays from 9 am on and if I have been a good silver-tongued boy then I am sure, you won´t regret to
Are you a good walker?
Then you can enjoy potholing, mountain climbing, camping, bushwalking with plenty of trails.
come and have a look for yourself.
Come to Colombia, the only risk is stayinggggggggg as the tv spot goes
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