Colombia: A Road Trip
- Places I Went:
- Santa Marta
- Dann Hotel Cartagena
- Havana Club Bar Cartagena
- Tabacos San Libardo Bar Bogota
- Media Luna Hostel
- Plaza De La Aduana
- Cartagena Fortress
About my trip
We took a 4.5 hour flight from Atlanta to Bogota on the 24th of December and spent our first night in the Airport Marriott (about 5 km from the Airport). We attempted to rent our car on the 25th of December, but because of it was Christmas nearly everything was closed so we spent the remainder of Christmas day riding a bus for $1.50 around the city of Bogota watching people and exploring all the neighborhoods. Once the bus stopped driving on paved streets and ended up on gravel roads in the less developed hillside neighborhoods of Bogota, Rylan and I got off the bus and proceeded to explore on foot.
We got our car on the 26th of December from the Dollar Rental agency and used Google translator to make the deal. We rented a 4 door Hyundai for 6 days for $380 and unlimited millage.
From Monday until Saturday we drove around the entire northern half of Colombia with a mission to get to see Colombia in it's natural and most common form. We explored so many Villages, drank about 15 cups of coffee a day (usually bought from roadside stands) and talked to so many people in our broken Spanish (which we learned on the plane ride down).
We got to Cartagena on Tuesday night and stayed on the beach at the Dann Hotel for $180/ night. It was our treat after staying in the car and battling the heat, trucks and buses. Left Cartagena on Thursday at 4:00 PM and drove back via Medellin ( the opposite road we took to go north).
Finished by exploring Bogota again on New Years Eve, however, to my surprise it's not very exciting on New Years Eve.
My top tip for this trip
1. Pack very light (small backpack) so you can easily walk the streets without standing out badly.
2. I doesn't matter what you look like, if you are not Colombian you will stand out.
3. Leave the major cities and Absolutely explore the Mountains.
4. Do not be scared by the stories of danger. If you stay alert and on the roads you will be fine. Do not hike the jungles alone.
5. People are extremely nice and welcoming. Always try to speak in Spanish and they will be very helpful.
6. I don't think you have to worry about the police issued tickets you get over there. I never paid my speeding and passing violation ticket and still left without a problem.