Why you should visit Colombia!
I have now been living in Colombia for 6 months and I have loved every second! My family and friends were shocked when I told them about the move to Colombia. Many people still view Colombia as a dangerous country, of course, it still has its problems, notably corruption, but there have been so many positive changes over the past 10 years – most recently the peace agreement with the FARC. When people think about Colombia, they immediately think of Pablo Escobar and the cartel wars. But I want to tell you that Colombia is about much more and I will tell you why you should visit Colombia!
Firstly: the people. The Colombian people are amazing and some of the most welcoming people I have met. I noticed this when I first entered the country when I stayed with a Colombian family in Pasto. This has been a common theme; Colombians really do make the best hosts! But generally, the people are incredibly friendly and will go out of their way to help you. They love having ´gringos´ in the country and are fascinated. This for me is important when traveling anywhere in the world and is a huge reason why I have loved Colombia.
Secondly, there are so many incredible places to visit and so many things to see. I have lived and traveled in Colombia for 6 months and there are still a lot of things I was unable to see. There is a big variety here from the big cities like Bogota and Medellin, to the Caribbean coast, huge palm trees in the coffee region and the Amazonian jungle. My personal highlights include the amazing church in Ipiales called ´Las Lajas´ – which is a must see if you are traveling from Ecuador! Also, the lost city, just outside Santa Marta, is beautiful. You see so much on the 4/5 day trek and the final stop is worth it!
Finally; the music, the dancing, the partying and the celebrations! The Colombians lead the way for all of the above and I found myself a new passion here: Salsa! But that is expected as I have been living in Cali which is the capital of the salsa. Parties and clubs are so different to back home with music switching from reggaeton to Ed Sheeran to Bachata! But they know how to have a good time and have internationally famous festivals – if you’re here in February then Barranquilla is the place to be!
There is so much more I could say about this great country but I wanted to keep it short and sweet – plus my Spanish remains very basic! I hope I have given you enough reasons to visit Colombia, as they say here – ´the risk is that you will want to stay!´.
Author: James Duncan
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