Medellin, Colombia, South America
I had an unbelievably awesome day today! I got up early this morning and headed up to the Terminal del Transporte Norte to catch a bus to Guatape. I was lucky and caught one that was leaving in just ten minutes, so I grabbed an empanada and a juice for breakfast and hopped on the bus. It only cost 12,000 (£4) for the bus that took about two hours to get up to Guatape. It was a great deal. The scenery on the way there was pretty awesome, driving through the mountains, until we finally hit the lake.
In the 1950’s they built a hydroelectric dam here and it flooded the area to create an amazing lake. Before we got to Guatape we got to a rock called El Peí±on, which is over 200m high and stands out as being the highest point for miles. They built a staircase up to the top of the rock and it is over 650 stairs. Once you get to the top of the rock, there is a tower that was built another 100 steps high and it gives you an incredible 360* view of Guatape. This is one of the most incredibly beautiful sights I have seen anywhere in the world. I was gobsmacked. I had seen pictures online, so I knew what to expect, but it well exceeded my expectations. I sat on top of the tower for about a half hour just enjoying the view, and then went down to the top of the rock where I had a beer at one of the cafes. It was a breathtaking view.
I walked down the 700 steps to get to the base of the rock, where I was able to get a little tuk-tuk kind of thing to bring me into the town of Guatape. It’s a really cute little town right on the banks of the lake, and at the weekends they do boat trips out onto the lake for a different perspective. Unfortunately, today none of the boats were going out, so I missed that part of Guatape. It is a place I will definitely come back to though, so I’m not too worried.
I had a nice lunch in the town of Guatape overlooking the lake and had a great time in this peaceful little area. I’ve always known that I’m not really a city person, but I realize it more and more when I leave a city and get to spend some time in the peacefulness of the country like this. I relaxed in the town until about 4pm and then hopped on a bus back to Medellin. I talked to Melissa while I was in Guatape and she told me that one of her friends, Kat, is in Medellin right now for work. I had met Kat a couple of times before in Bogota, so Melissa text her to see if we could get together.
It worked out really well because Kat was going out for a drink with a couple of friends, and they invited me to come out with them. I caught a taxi (it was already after dark) and met them at the mexican restaurant called Milagros. By the time I got there they were already working on a pitcher of Sangria, so I joined in. They were all so nice. They all spoke English all night and we had a really nice conversation, mostly about traveling, which was good. At least it was a topic I know a little bit about.
We had a second pitcher of sangria and then had to leave. We were just about the last people there and they were closing down for the night. Kat and her friend Jose wouldn’t let me pay, which was so nice of them. I can’t get over how nice Colombian people are. To invite a stranger out to join you for drinks and then pay for him, it was just so nice. Now I’m back at the hotel and getting my stuff ready to leave Medellin tomorrow. I’m going to be heading down to the coffee region which I’ve heard it beautiful, so I’m looking forward to more time outside of the big cities and enjoying the countryside a bit more.