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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Bolívar, Colombia

Aug 31, 2009 - Colombia: Cartagena

We are now back in Cartagena for the third time, waiting to catch a sailboat to Panama on 2nd Sept. We had planned to do some more sightseeing here but unfortunately both came down with the flu and I think for me a possible infection for my leg. So instead of sweating around Cartagena we have spent most of our time in our room under the fan, me on antibiotics to ward off any germs in my knee that might be hanging around. Except for the first day when a flash flood caused an electricty blackout around Cartagena. We managed to be around the...

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Aug 22, 2009 - Colombia: Cartagena

From Lima it was an overnight flight to Bogota in Colombia and six hours in the airport struggling to stay awake for our next flight to Cartagena on the Caribbean coast. Luckily we found a hotel with aircon in Cartagena (stinking hot there!) when we finally made it and crashed out for a while. Cartagena is a gorgeous city with Spanish architecture and a walled old town and wandering around and getting lost the crumbling back streets is most of the fun. We arrived on a public holiday so all the locals were in the streets drinking and blaring...

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Aug 1, 2009 - Colombia.....and home

We survived! Colombia, the land of the FARC, M-19, cocaine and kidnappings... happens to be absolutely lovely. Probably the most modern and civilized country we have encountered thus far. To be fair, we stayed away from the guerrilla hideouts in the mountains and apparently “ Plan Colombia”, the US financed ($ 1.3 billion) anti-narco plan, is working quite well. In Bogota, we stayed with Senora Norah, Bo and Erin’s nanny’s mother. (random, but so fortunate ) Sweeter than an oblea (local street treat of two giant wafers with caramel in the...

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Jul 22, 2009 - BOGATA

The bus ride was a long 11 hours, but comfortable as it was a luxury overnight bus. Got to Bogata about 9am after leaving at 8pm the previous night. Saying goodbye was really sad. Adri and Laura came too. Adri goes back to uni in one week and Laura has friends in Bogata she wants to catch up with. Adri lives with her cousin Lina in an apartment in the heart of Bogata. i met Mario Adri´s boyfriend and Lina's boyfriend Andreas who both live in other apartments in Bogata. They are both such gentleman. After breakfast we went with Mario, Laura...

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Trip Journal


South American trip

Jul 21, 2009 - Columbia

Columbia – famous for coffee, plastic surgery and pristine coastline – infamous for cocaine, drug trafficking and at one time the highest kidnap rate in the world! We had no illusions as to the reputation and potential dangers that faced us as we arrived in Columbia but our heightened senses without doubt added to the appeal and ultimate enjoyment of our time in this beautiful country. When we began planning this trip well over a year ago it took more than a little persuasion to get Cath on board. The Holleys, although a little nervous,...

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Jul 5, 2009 - CARTAGENA

We woke up this morning feeling much better, and it was time to check out old town in Cartagena. We had seen all the new and modern buildings when we entered the port, and old town is quite the contrast. A very old wall entirely surrounds the city. The buildings are very similar to Antigua, and Granada in their age and origin. We were amazed at the cleanliness of the city. Numerous times we came across city workers cleaning the streets, even on a Sunday. (I doubt there are unions or overtime pay here) Once again we reminded of the contrast...

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Jul 4, 2009 - Casa Viena

We were awake fairly early. Last night we had met up at Café Del Mar with Hamish, Rich, and Ben, and later Geneva, Stephanie, Vicki and Hubert (now referred to as group of 4) joined us. Manuel and Olivier were staying on Tropicbird. We had drinks at the café and watched the sunset. Unfortunately the clouds weren’t cooperating and blocked most of it. Cory and Elaine had dinner at a small restaurant near the hostel. It was very much a family run operation. The lady was carrying around her young baby, and her daughter we figured was around 8...

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Jul 3, 2009 - Open Water and Cartagena

So for the second time we left Porvenir, and sailed to the last spot where we would be able to swim and rinse off, before beginning the steady journey to Cartagena, Columbia. It was nice to swim, and then time for a quick powwow where we were told what to expect from the high seas. Hitting the open waters definitely created more waves, and although nobody was seasick, many people took to lying down, including Cory and Elaine. Our first day on open waters brought us quite a treat; the sailboat became surrounded by dolphins. There were too...

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Apr 19, 2009 - Last day in Cartagena, tears ensue

We had breakfast at a cafe near the Walls entrance since our beloved Juan Valdez cafe next to our hostal wasn't open til 11 and then wandered the streets and shopped. I managed to buy a few Botero-inspired paintings though I hadn't found the one I wanted for my bathroom (fat naked lady putting on makeup in front of bathroom mirror). We took part in a lovely though pricey Italian lunch complete with lobster risotto and limonada de coco, a resto we had spent an hour looking for one of the previous nights but couldn't find because the Viva...

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Apr 10, 2009 - Cartagena: Rosario Islands, Beach, Cafe del Mar

Despite a long night of unexpected partying with the Mexicans, we were up before 7 am this morning to head out to the docks to catch our boat tour to the Rosario Islands. It quickly became a really disappointing trip. We were lucky to have lots of sun and calm seas but it wasn't what we expected. Though we were told to be there at 7:30 am, we didn't leave on our boats until after 9:30 am because we had to keep changing boats which kept failing safety norms according to Colombian standards. The ride was ok but took about an hour until we...

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Apr 9, 2009 - Cartagena: "Los pasajeros de ayer" arrive and LOVE it

Ok, so we did NOT get our trip to Colombia started on the right food after last night's cancellation. But we were lucky enough to score seats on the first flight out of Quito to Bogota leaving around 6 am. We didn't even have to go through customs again (since we had already been stamped out) and were given a lovely breakfast and Colombian coffee (mmmm) on the flight. Ok, next observation: El Dorado International Airport (Bogota) is totally EFFED UP! It is the most disorganized, crazy, awful airport terminal ever. First, our plane parks in...

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Apr 8, 2009 - Off to Colombia we go- Cartagena

Hi guys, This is a preemptive post just to keep everyone in the know. It is now Easter Week Vacation from school (Semana Santa) and we had this planned months ago- to spend 11 days on the Caribbean Coast. We are reserved and excited and just hoping that all goes as smoothly and safely as possible and that we get maximum sun exposure. Here is the itinerary and I hope to have pics and deets added shortly after our return. Days 1-3: Cartagena for city touring, good eating and cocktail sipping, visit to the Rosario Islands. Days 4-6: we go...

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