Blogs from Santander, Colombia, South America

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South America » Colombia » Santander » Barichara February 5th 2019

Being back in this beautiful country for another month before we ship Tortuga from Cartagena is turning out to be very enjoyable so far. After we left Cuenca mid-January, we put in a few long days of driving to get up to Ibarra, in northern Ecuador, where we spent four nights back at one of our favourite campgrounds, Finca Sommerwind. It was great to catch up with our friends there and spend a few days relaxing around camp before crossing the border into Colombia. We had been wondering how the border crossing would go this time, as when we crossed over last August it took a very long time and the immigration officials were completely overwhelmed by the huge number of Venezuelans heading south. The night before we left Sommerwind, an unfortunate incident occurred in Ibarra, ... read more
La Serrana campground, Salento
Sunset over the coffee region
Iglesia de Belen, Silvia

South America » Colombia » Santander » Barichara May 9th 2017

We left Bogotá in two cars to head to Barichara, 321 kilometres away from Bogotá. To begin with Juan David, Marian, Sienna, Kev and I headed off to JD's childhood home where we met his mother Catalina (known as Catta) and where his sister Natalia and Gloria - Marian's mum -joined us. Then we set off, heading first to Villa de Leyva in the mountains about two hours away, and where Kev and I spent a couple of days when we were in Colombia five years ago. I travelled in one car with Gloria, Catta and Natalia who did the driving while Kev went with JD, Marian, and Sienna. After lunch at El Camaleon in Villa de Leyva we picked up Marian's brother David, who joined us in our car, as we all continued our journey ... read more
Mother & son in Catalina's back garden
Lunchtime stop at Villa de Leyva
Michelle & Gloria in one of El Alero's courtyards

South America » Colombia » Santander » Barichara April 15th 2016

So after striking out in the so called "adventure" capital of Colombia due to no "adventure" activities being offered I decided to take a bus to Barichara about 15 miles up in the mountains. Barichara is an old Spanish colonial town founded in 1705. The town I'm sure has not changed much in the 300+ years since it was founded. The streets are old cobblestone, the buildings whitewashed, and old Spanish tiles adorn the rooftops. A perfect place to just relax for a couple of days and soak it all in. The landscape surrounding the town consisted of lush green, steep mountains and the mighty Rio Suarez in the valley below. These complimented the town absolutely perfectly. It was like I had stepped back into time. After I arrived in town I checked into Tinto Hostel ... read more
goat
bari2
camino to guane

South America » Colombia » Santander January 21st 2016

First off apologies it´s taken over 2 weeks to get this done, backpackers don´t rely on PCs the way they used to, so finding somewhere with a computer and good enough internet connection is tricky. Also, apologies for any poor spelling, everything is in Spanish, so I have no spellchecker. After leaving Nottingham on Thursday night for an over night bus to the airport, an entire day of planes on Friday including a 2 hour delay on the final flight from Bogata the 29 hour journey to Cartagena on the Caribbean coast finished. We were greeted at the airport by a very organised official taxi rank and rapidly wisked to our hostel by a very polite and helpful taxi driver who even returned Chris´s small rucksack which he left in the taxi. After a decent night ... read more
Hummingbird
Tired and hot on the jungle trek
El Jeffe

South America » Colombia » Santander » Bucaramanga January 12th 2016

Geo: 7.11331, -73.1205Cartagena to Minca 21 December - 8 January 2016The flight from Bogota to Cartagena was very short and much more comfortable than a long bus ride. We enjoyed a relaxing Christmas in Cartagena, founded in 1533 by a Spaniard. It soon became a rich town as it was the main Spanish port on the Caribbean where all the gold stolen from indigenuous communities in South America was stored before being transported back to Spain. Because of this it was a prime target for buccaneers and it was sacked three times in the 16 Century alone. Sir Frances Drake was persuaded not to raise it to the ground again in 1586 by being given a payment of 10 Million Pesos. After this the Spaniards set about protecting the town by surrounding it with fortified walls.Walking ... read more
Cartagena square
Christmas lights
The fruit ladies wear the national flag colours.

South America » Colombia » Santander » Bucaramanga June 23rd 2014

Our Arrival Our bus from San Gil arrived in the Bucaramanga terminal at 11:55am. The bus terminal is quite far out of the town centre so we caught a bus in. The arrivals section in the bus terminal is a road in the middle of the terminal. Go up a level and out and there will be another road with taxis on. Go right and there is a bus stop. We caught a bus with 'Centro / CR 17' on the front. It cost COP$1,850 each, go through the turnstile on the bus and pay the driver as you get on. It took about 30 mins to get to CR17 and we got out when it reached about calle 30. Press the stop button above the back door to make the driver stop. Where We Stayed ... read more
Chicamoncha Canyon
The cable cars inside the park
Chicamoncha Canyon

South America » Colombia » Santander » Bucaramanga June 19th 2014

My dear friends, this is a short letter to a twitter publication that went viral. Mis queridos amigos, aprovecho este espacio para hacer pasar esta corta misiva a propósito de una publicación en twitter que corrió como pólvora en el internet. We couldn´t help but notice a publication which again encourages the use of stereotypes. A move that I do not understand since you did it just after your country had won the match against Spain, shouldn´t you be happy and rejoiced by the triumph instead of favoring the existence of stereotypes? I mean, we did not play against you on the worldcup, so why us? No pudimos evitar notar su publicación que favorece los repetidos estereotipos que siempre hemos tenido. Algo que no entiendo es, el por qué hacerlo, si ustedes acababan de ganar el ... read more
Stereotypes are not good
Very proud of our team
falcao y james, excellent players.

South America » Colombia » Santander » Bucaramanga June 4th 2014

As I have been slacking off for a while, I thought it would be a good idea to write something for you, my dear folks. And here I find myself entertaining the thought of depicting the city I am working at the moment, Bucaramanga, the capital of the Santander Department, a capital whose economy has been compared to that of some developed countries, by a local newspaper. According to them, this is probably due to the fact that its economy is very diversified and it generates a large number of jobs; since many of its businesses come from family enterprises, the rates of poverty would be very low compared to other regions in the country. Como me he encontrado perezeando un poco, pensé que sería una buena idea escribirles algo, mis queridos amigos. Y heme aquí, ... read more
Catedral de La Sagrada Familia at night
A fashion show at Megamall
Visita de Bolívar a Bucaramanga

South America » Colombia » Santander May 10th 2014

Well, not many goings-on around here for the moment, just revising and editing my novel. But in the meantime, I had the chance to visit a quiet destination; located in Santander, at only 231 km from Bucaramanga -around 4h20 mins by bus-, Velez, whose name dates from the Spanish conquest, is a village renowned for its delicious sweets, made ​​with guava pulp and wrapped in banana leaves, as well as its National Festival of Guabina, a typical Colombian dance. Historically, it has to be named as it was one of the first territories in the world, and first in Latin America, which granted the right to vote to women in 1853, putting an end to their fight for full citizenship, according to Wikipedia. Bueno, no han pasado muchas cosas, por el momento, aparte de escribir, editar ... read more
La iglesia atravesada de Las Nieves
Día de mercado
Los deliciosos dulces veleños

South America » Colombia » Santander » Bucaramanga April 21st 2014

My dear friends, I want to tell you now about the place where I have lived for some time, for almost 7 years to be more precise, while accompanying my parents in Colombia. This is Floridablanca, in Santander; my parents bought a house there while I was abroad and as I wanted to stay with them during my sabbatical, then I was quite happy to be lodging at the mama hotel, specially after my sabbatical turned into a 6-year teaching period, already and now, when some events have brought many changes into our family life. Anyway, the house was first rented by Jose, my brother and his family, which made it easy for my parents to decide to move to this city. Mis queridos amigos, quiero contarles sobre el lugar donde he vivido por algo de ... read more
Ceremonia de Imposición de Tocas, segunda promoción enfermeras unab
Ecoparque El Santisimo
A very tasty oblea




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