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Old 09-13-2018, 02:10 PM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
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Here are some more videos and photos, of different places during a few of my trips the past couple years:

https://filebin.net/w93ujd6w2j5l7esq

There are landscapes (paisajes) driving on highways between cities; driving around coffee farms; towns and cities, Manizales, Medellin, Perreira. Smaller towns like Sonson, Sevilla. Town plazas (parks).

Short "slice of life" videos, some taken while walking, some while on a motorcyle on in a car.
  • Nightclub/dancing vids are taken in a small town, not a large city like you might expect. Contrary to popular belief in US and EU, fancy "turns and arm motions" are not the way dancing is done. You'll notice hip motion (not turns and twirls like they teach in so-called "Salsa class.").
  • Photos and videos taken in coffee farm country were taken around Genoa. Some driving around on jeep, others on motorcycle.
  • Video downtown with lots of nightclubs and lights is Parque Lleras in Medellin.
  • City street scenes with lots of hills (faldas) is Manizales.
The drive between Mesopotamia and Sonson is beautiful and can be done safely nowadays. Not so long ago, this highway was unsafe due to FARC. You can still see houses on the side of the road that the FARC had taken over, in some cases killing the inhabitants as part of their crusade/rampage for Marxism.

On a recent visit to Spain, I stayed with a friend in a small town near Barcelona. I was suprised one afternoon to see a cabalgata very similar to how they do it in Colombia: women riding horses down pueblo streets. You can see this in a couple of the photos.
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Old 09-14-2018, 04:15 PM
 
Location: Canada
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Nice pics. Those landscapes are very beautiful.

How often do they do those cabalgatas?
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Old 09-15-2018, 07:30 AM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanLuis View Post
How often do they do those cabalgatas?
Pretty frequently. At least a couple times / month.

IMG_20161217_081906.jpg is Medellin (taken from an apartment window.)

I highly recommend driving around Colombia. You'll be hard-pressed to find more beautiful landscapes in the world.

Just use common sense and be street-smart and you'll be fine.

Last edited by 80skeys; 09-15-2018 at 07:38 AM..
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Old 09-15-2018, 07:58 AM
 
Location: Future Expat of California
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80skeys,

Excellent pictures. I'll check out the videos later.
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Old 09-15-2018, 11:51 AM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peasy973 View Post
80skeys,

Excellent pictures. I'll check out the videos later.
Thank you. Any questions, feel free to ask.
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Old 09-15-2018, 05:25 PM
 
Location: London, UK
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An interesting vlog on Colombia uploaded only 2 days ago.

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Old 09-16-2018, 06:37 AM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
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The number of tourists going to the country is increasing. So far it's still limited to the typical tourist areas, but I expect it will slowly start to spread out around the country, particularly as the number of Asians increases (they tend to be less fearful about where they go).

Another thing that's happening is that there's a lot of new construction going on in the Zona Cafetera region. Property prices have been on the rise the past couple years and everywhere you go, there's new structures: new apartment buildings in Armenia, and houses along the highways and in smaller towns. Most of this seems to be Colombians from the bigger cities investing in the region, but I'm sure there's also some foreign investment too. I wouldn't be suprised if Chinese were buying up rural properties and coffee farms. My friend in Manizales told me they've been buying up in entire shopping malls .... Just like they do here in California.

On the plane to Bogota last month, there were a bunch of Asians on it. Some of them spoke basic Spanish, which made me think they had relocated to Colombia.
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Old 09-17-2018, 05:05 PM
 
Location: Canada
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With a name like "Planeta Rica" It has to be a cool place.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pueblofuerte View Post
To be fair this is one of the more "boring" routes in the country and the road infrastructure is so-so. There are a few gems (especially if you're into music history) like San Jacinto, Carmen de Bolivar, Ovejas, Sincelejo, Sampues, Sahagún, Cerete, San Pelayo, Planeta Rica...also this is the ancient territory of the Zenú civilization. So though it isn't your cookie-cutter tourist destination it really depends on your sensibilities to these cultural manifestations. As someone who has a strong interest in music, pre-columbian history and intangible cultural manifestations, I had a faboulous time when I explored this region. I especially enjoyed my time in Ovejas, Sucre. These are some personal photos I took of my time there.


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr


Festival de Gaitas: Ovejas, Sucre by Pueblo Fuerte, on Flickr




As for Bogota, there is definitely a lot of activity in the streets. Bogota is such a large, open-minded, arts city there is something for everybody. Anyone who thinks mall culture dominates says more about them and their circle of friends than the city itself. To prove it just take a stroll down la Septima, Restrepo or Chapinero centro, even Zona G. I personally don't feel in danger whilst walking the streets of Bogota although I can see how someone with a more sheltered existence can. There's definitely an edge to the city but its also quite a classy yet anti-establishment, alternative, exhilarating city with a growing international vibe.
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Old 09-23-2018, 10:48 AM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
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UrbanLuis:
You can look at the State Department Travel advice for Colombia, and avoid the Level 4 areas:
https://travel.state.gov/content/tra...-advisory.html


The rest of the country (including Level 3) is fine for you to drive around, given the precautions I've already talked about.


I only recently started using the State Department Travel site. It seems pretty accurate and thorough, with a few exceptions that only locals would know about. Like for example, I go driving all over the countryside in Valle Del Cauca and surrounding areas without any abnormal risk.


But they are spot-on with the Level 4 stuff. You don't want to go into those areas.
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Old 09-23-2018, 01:27 PM
 
Location: London, UK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 80skeys View Post
But they are spot-on with the Level 4 stuff. You don't want to go into those areas.
Nonsense. There are places in all those departments that are perfectly fine for travel. A number of tourists go to Bahia Solano and Nuqui in Choco for example - I've been there 3 times myself.

The British travel advisory is far more accurate despite there still being some discrepancies, not to mention year on year almost everywhere is getting better. Government travel advisories tend to be overzealous so as to relinquish any possible implication and are usually 2 or so years behind the times when it comes to positive developments.

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/colombia

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