03.10.2011 16 °C
We have finally made into South America and probably to the most challenging part of our tour. We don’t speak the language and it seems already that the barriers will be a little tougher than what we are used to. The accommodations are a little rougher but then the adventure value is higher. We have decided to place ourselves with most independent travellers and seek the places where there is a little more excitement. Arriving in Bogota, Colombia we didn’t really know what to expect although having already travelled through some third world countries we had a fair idea. True to form there was the usual noise and chaos at the airport and then the taxi ride from hell dodging everything from horse and carts to trucks, motorbikes and anything else that moves. It seems we hardly blink an eye now and I think I actually caught a few winks. We decided to stay in Colombia’s La Candaleria didtrict. ]Once known for a hotbed of violence and corruption the area has been kind of gentrified with most of the cities art galleries, parliament and universities in or close to this area. There are stacks of hostels and restaurants around the area and it seems like a police officer or two on every corner. Because of all the students there is a lot of art both on and off the streets giving the place a real edgy feel although it is the oldest part of the city dating back to the 1500’s. We have had our own rooms for a few days in Alegria’s hostel. Nice place but a front door hinge that just doesn’t squeak when opened it yells and screams with protest every time someone even looks at it. Patti and I must have been woken a dozen times by this door that seemed to have a foovoozela attached to it. Of couse once again the boys got the better end of the deal and slept like babies. Apart from that it was a great place, met some really cool travellers and got some great tips. Its like swings and roundabouts in hostels, sometimes not as comfortable as a hotel but meeting people in a kitchen or around the fire watching a rugby game can help make travelling sometimes not so much as a drag. The boys hired a few bikes and we toured the city with our trusty guide Manuel ( probably not his real name). he took us everywhere around the city through some pretty hair raising traffic( taxi’s were against us this time) and we managed to get a good look around. The boys seemed to like a lot of the graffiti art work which is all about politics and freedom. A lot of Banksy inspired stuff so I’m told.
We managed to see most of Bogota’s attractions, a few galleries and made it to Monseratte via a funicular ride up and a cable car down. Bogota seems to go on forever and although the city was interesting I was glad to board the plane to Cartagena. Andiamo