Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Colorful Colombia Part IV: On the road to the Caribbean

In-between the Colombian highlands and the Caribbean coast there was quite a distance to cover - a lot of bus fun for two days straight but we tried to make the most of it, breaking the journey in half in San Gil, Colombia's adventure capital. While we didn't have the time to stay over to get an adrenaline rush with rafting, paragliding or abseiling, we participated in a round of "tejo", a typical Colombian game involving dynamite and booze. The next morning we embarked on a 15-hour bus ride up to Santa Marta on the Caribbean coast. It was long...very long, but given the air-con and wifi on the bus, it could have been a lot worse. And our hostel had a pool and a roof-top bar so that was something to look forward to....and we were excited for our jungle trek to the Ciudad Perdida but more on that on the next post! Stay tuned!

A so call mystical urban forest in San Gil. Unfortunately, the park was closed so we could only snap a few pictures from outside but I would have loved to wander around under those trees.

On the Plaza Mayor in San Gil before the storm rolled in. We were just enjoying a cold beer after the first stretch of our long trip up north when the rain drops made us run in search of a nice place for dinner.

We found this little Colombian gem in a side street. A full Colombian meal - comida corriente - with soup, a main plate with meat, rice and vegetables and some cake for dessert and a lemonade for less than 4 € total. Buen aproveche!

The "tejo" situation - throwing stone disks on those mud covered platforms where the little pink envelopes are filled with dynamite. If you hit them, a loud bang announces you won 9 points for your team. Admittedly, we only achieved this from like a 2 m distance ;-)
But the beers and the company made it a great night out!

A stroll through Santa Marta on the Caribbean coast - this little coastal town mostly serves as a base for treks to the Sierra Nevada or trips to the Tayrona National Park but the city center had a calm colonial attire with a Caribbean touch to it - a bit of how I imagine Cuba to be like.
And there were quite a few nice restaurants and bars allowing for some delicious treats at still reasonable prices.

In case you haven't noticed yet, I have a thing for colored poor brother had to snap a picture of me posing in front of a wall every few meters. Since they were even prettier in Cartagena I'll save those for another post, but I couldn't help but include at least one ;-) Thanks to Felix for his patience!

And again, great graffitis!

The best juice bar! Also great for a some good non-Colombian dinner with pitas, fajitas and salads! Just in case you had enough "pollo con arroz", chicken with rice, for a while....

Ah and in case anybody plans on visiting Colombia... the Masaya Hostel in Santa Marta is a great place to stay with its rooftop pool and bar. Private rooms are quite expensive for a hostel but the pool and atmosphere are definitely a pro argument. On sundays, there is even a rooftop pool party .... :-)

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