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Colombia - getting in and out

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Colombia - getting in and out

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11. Posted by Chi-Town (First Time Poster 1 posts) 9y

Traveling To Medellin, Colombia

My first trip, March 2007…

When I booked my first trip to Medellin I did not know what to expect based on all the negative media reports in the US regarding Colombia. It seemed that whenever I informed any of my friends, family and colleagues about my planned trip to Colombia, they all thought I was crazy. My flight was already booked and my hotel room was already reserved, so no turning back now. I was going to Colombia!

I did not come across any kidnappers upon my arrival. But, what I did discover was a wonderful magical world-class metropolitan city in South America. The culture, the food, the music, the warm weather, salsa clubs, vibrant nightlife, lots of modern and interesting architecture throughout the city, amazing views from the metrocable, a much superior metro system compared to the one back home. And a pleasant surprise that was not mentioned in any of the trip reports I read before my departure, an incredible expansive water park to rival anything in the states. I spent a whole day relaxing at “El Parque de Aguas” and found it to be a very enjoyable experience which divided my trip. I had a great time watching the locals spend their weekend running around the park with friends and family enjoying the beautiful weather and experiencing the varies water rides available. There were many families who brought blankets and picnic baskets filled with typical Colombian dishes along with treats for the children to enjoy.

There are parks everywhere were the locals meet to socialize and talk about the daily news as well as current events. Old men sit on park benches snacking on fresh fruit, sharing treats with the birds, which also seem to enjoy mixing with the locals. Young mothers busy taking care of their babies while the older children run around playing. The children are very friendly and love to play games and joke around with friends and tourist alike.

More importantly, what separates Medellin from other travel destinations are the generous and friendly locals known as Paisas (pie-sahs). I traveled to Medellin alone but never felt so much at home due to the fact that the Paisas made me feel like family. Everyone I met was eager to show off their great city. I was constantly being invited to travel across town to see many of the wonderful places a new visitor to Medellin must see during their trip.

One of the most frequently asked questions was, “What part of town does your family live in Medellin?” I told them I did not have any family in Medellin. To which they replied, “Who do you know in Medellin?” I said I did not know anyone. They all thought I was crazy but then responded with a smile, “You now have friends and family in Medellin.”

The only negative comment I have about my incredible experience in Medellin is that I put on a few extra pounds because almost everyone I met invited me to their home for a traditionally home cooked Colombian dinner, which I was always more than happy to accept all invitations. The Paisas are great at making you feel at home in a foreign country.

The first thing I did upon my return to the states was book another trip. I have since been back and already have a third trip planned this year for my return to Medellin, Colombia.

Tip: I would strongly suggest anyone interested in visiting Medellin to brush up on their Spanish because there are not too many Paisas who speak English. No worries, an English program has now been added as part of the student courses. Medellin takes pride and promotes reading in all its educational institutions as part of its transformation into a world class destination for travelers from around the world to visit.

For more info on Medellin, Colombia visit http://www.medellintraveler.com and for news and information on Colombia today http://www.discovercolombia-news.com

Vive Colombia! I love Medellin!

12. Posted by El Boot (Full Member 106 posts) 9y

^^^^

eh, i was looking for info on how to get in and out of colombia rather than a medellin tourist brochure...

Utercht - Thanks for your replies

13. Posted by miromar (Respected Member 175 posts) 9y

hahaha... that post about medellin was pretty random, but never mind!

Hey, im in iquitos right now, so might be able to help a bit...

I agree with the other guys, i think you should skip colombia this time, cause i believe it is better to see less places and see them properly than rush all the time... specially around suoth america, where NOTHING happens when you planned it would happen :D

I would say you should make your way from salvador to belem maybe, then santarem, manaus, boat (or flight) to tabatinga, leticia, Iquitos and then you could fly to Lima (the cost about $70) and head down south peru and then chile. I dont think you have time to make it overland to chile if you wanna see peru properly.. Also you have to take into account that if you take the boat you are going upriver, so it takes longer than the way round. Im currently travelling by boat from yurimaguas-iquitos-leticia-manaus and so far it has been a GREAT experience, although be prepared for the most random things to happen :D

Any other help you need let me know!

x x Miriam x x

14. Posted by El Boot (Full Member 106 posts) 9y

Hi Miriam, thanks for the reply...

we are actually spending Xmas and NY in Ilha Grande which i believe is a lot further south than Salvador so i thinking getting across the continent will be a bit harder givin the time frame...

reckon its feasible to leave ilha grande afer xmas and make it up to manaus by boat and on to iquitos and follow a similar route to what you suggested?.....

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