I have one week in Iquitos, Peru at then end of July then 4 weeks in Colombia throughout August. I will be starting in Medellin and probably go to coffee region, Bogata, San Gil, Tayrona and Lost City trek,Cartegena and then get a boat across to Panama for return flight to Manchester. Has anyone taken a boat from Cartagena to Panama stopping at
San Blas islands? Is this too much to do in a month? Would you recommencd getting over night buses between places or flying where possible? I wil be travelling with my fiancee. Any advice on places to stay, visit, not to miss etc much appreciated. We are quite adventurous but would like a bit of time to chill at some point!
Around $150 per month you will do fine for Phenom area and its up to you how you manage your budget of 4 weeks and But if you are gonna be having fancy food in every mornings and evenings, it is also much expensive $10 - 15 a day...
I think your itinerary is doable in a month. You'll probably end up having to take some internal flights whilst there, because Colombia is very mountainous so for some routes it's not practical to go by land. For example, the flight from Cartagena to Bogota took just over an hour, but would have been around 20 hours by bus. I took 3 internal flights when I was there, all with Avianca who are the national carrier and are very good, with reasonable prices.
The coffee region was one of the highlights of Colombia for me so definitely allow a few days there, and try and stay on a working coffee farm for a couple of days if you can. I stayed at one called Hacienda Venecia which was fantastic. The scenery in that part of the country is stunning; also don't miss going for a walk in the Valle De Cocora from Salento as it's beautiful. You can hire jeeps for the short journey there.
I didn't take the boat to Panama but this is easy to arrange from Cartagena, from what I saw. Have a look at notice boards in hotels and hostels in Getsemani, and also in Getsemani is a company called Blue Sailing who organise boats. I spoke to them with a view to doing the journey another time and they seemed reputable.
Thanks for the info Bex76!
Checked out Hacienda Venecia which looks very nice.
Is it easy to get a bus from Hacienda Venecia to Bogata? Can you recommend anywhere to stay in Salento? Still looking into getting a boat from Cartagena to Panama, only problem is that it will take up 5 or 6 days of our trip.
In Salento I stated at the Hotel Salento Real which was pretty decent, and they offer a good breakfast.
I'm not sure about buses to the Hacienda from Bogotá as I went as part of a tour, but it's not far from Manizales which is a fairly major hub in the coffee region so I would have thought you'd be able to get there quite easily by bus from Bogotá and from there arrange onward transport.