COLOMBIA – a complete guide

Colombia is still suffering from the stigma of being a dangerous place torn between drug barons and guerillas. But actually, it is a beautiful and interesting place – with wonderful, honest people.
On just one visit, it became one of my favorite countries on earth. Wanna see for yourself? Then here is my complete guide

At the Goldmuseum in Bogotá, Colombia
Treasures at the Gold Museum in Bogotá – by far not Colombia’s only treasure…
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Guide to BOGOTÁ – Colombia’s hip ‘n’ artsy capital

Guide to Bogotá – Colombia’s hip ‘n’ artsy capital.
It’s the most energetic and vibrant Latin American city I’ve ever visited, indeed.

Graffiti in Bogotá
All the ingenious and powerful murales, colorful graffitis, are one of Bogotá’s strongest suit.

I’m still overwhelmed by the charm and the beauty of many neighborhoods. I’m also impressed by the environmental awareness, by the countless delightful little shops and vegetarian and vegan snack bars. The most amazing suit, however, is the eclectic, outstanding, creative art that can be found at every corner.

Totally unexpectedly, Bogotá took me by storm.

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Guide to CALI – And a Day Trip to Paradisiac Haciendas

Cali, next to Medellín another Colombian city’s name that in the late 20th century made your blood freeze. The so-called Cali-cartel had a firm grip on the city and its surroundings, the lovely Valle del Cauca.

Cali prides itself to be the Salsa capital of the world; their words – sorry, Cuba.
Where others need an entire troop of musicians, this gentleman rocks the street all bye:himself.

After the last Gentlemen of Cali were arrested in 1995, the city came to peace. Without the world noticing, though. Hence, to this date, Cali carries the stigma of a dangerous cradle of a dangerous drug syndicate.

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SALENTO – Colombia ‘s Fifty Shades of Green

Fifty Shades of Green? In reality, there are millions of shades of green in Salento, a picturesque town in the coffee region of Colombia.

Main Square of Salento.
The lucky people of Salento are spending their life right in a picture postcard.

Nestled in the coffee mountains of Quindío, Salento is the epitome of Colombian life: A small town with little houses painted in all the colors the hardware store had available.

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Guide to MEDELLÍN – And a Day Trip to GUATAPÉ

Let me guide you to Medellín – which is also a great gateway for a fantastic day trip to the mesmerizing town of Guatapé.

Fernando Botero La Muerte de Pablo Escobar. One of the drug baron's mansions was between Medellín and Guatapé
Fernando Botero La Muerte de Pablo Escobar
Escobar was shot and killed by the Colombian National Police already in 1993, but like all the rest of this beautiful country, since then, Colombia progressed a lot; sadly, without the world taking notice.I wish my post will change that at least a bit.
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Two Days in CARTAGENA

Cartagena is Colombia’s most touristy destination. No wonder, they have a Caribbean beach and a walled old town that is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Nevertheless, I found spending two days in Cartagena enough.

Woman walking in Cartagena, Colombia
Although no Colombian woman is wearing this when there are no tourists around, this lady makes this picture….picturesque.
(Photo: ShonEjai from Pixabay)

However, the old city is very alluring and there are lots of touristy infrastructures.

Exactly the reason to dislike it.

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SANTA MARTA – Spectacularly Unspectacular

Santa Marta is a spectacularly unspectacular place.

Coffee vendor on a street in Santa Marta
Good morning, Santa Marta! The coffee lady is pushing her cart on Calle 19; who needs Starbucks, anyways?!
In the afternoon her place is taken by the gentleman who sells cheese-filled arepas. A very pleasant fast-food culture far from chain companies. 

The perfect place for those who don’t suffer from FOMO but are very well able to observe and enjoy the small things of truly Colombian life.

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A Day at the PARQUE TAYRONA

Before I begin to tell you about my amazing day at Parque Tayrona, I must admit that I skipped one-stop.

Getting sneak peeks at the cool, blue ocean is very encouraging. Like the carrot dangling in front of a mule.  

After we left the pleasure hell of the beaches of Cartagena, we made it to Santa Marta, a city by the sea. A little colonial, a little touristy, a little average, but very unpretentious. A healthy mix of good crowds.

And adjacent to the fantastic natural reserve Parque Tayrona.

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Floating in PALOMINO – Take Me to the River, Drop Me in the Water

Floating in Palomino: The former fishermen’s village is booming! Because it has one of Colombia’s nicest beaches and a river with a major fun factor.

Floating on Rio Palomino
Floating down on the shallow waters of Rio Palomino.

So floating is what we did today. Not only in time, but on the long and winding Palomino river.

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