All posts tagged: explore

Biking Coconuco to Popayán: Not the “Death Road,” but…

When planning my partner and I’s journey overland from Colombia to Ecuador, we had to find a place to stop along the way to break up the journey from Bogotá to the border.  We could have stopped in the eclectic, salsa-loving city of Cali, but since we prefer smaller places, we decided to take a 12 hour overnight bus from Bogotá to the small city of Popayán. Popayán is known for its colonial architecture and as Colombia’s “White City” due to the historical centre which is filled with white buildings.  It is surrounded by mountains, including the Purace Volcano.  Once you’ve explored the colonial centre, it’s worth it to either attempt the Purace volcano climb (only allowed with a guide and trips aren’t made every day if you’re tight for time) or take a trip to the nearby indigenous village of Coconuco for some time in hot springs and an adrenaline-pumping bike ride. I booked the trip to Coconuco through my hostel, HostelTrail.  It cost 55,000 Colombian Pesos, or about $25 Canadian.  It included getting …

Visiting Guatapé with the Paisas

I originally read that Guatapé, a two hour trip outside of Medellin, was busy and crowded on weekends, and so, not being a fan of crowds, planned to visit on a Monday as a daytrip.  But some things in our Medellin schedule had to get rearranged, and so we had to change our daytrip to fall on a Sunday.  It turns out this was the best decision that could have happened – the vibe of Guatapé on a Sunday was one of my most fun days in Colombia.

Sunset Over Waterton

In the book/film Wild, Cheryl Strayed details how her mother always used to say that there was a sunrise and a sunset every day, and you simply had to be present for it, to “put yourself in the way of beauty.” We were enjoying beers at our campsite just outside the National Park gates.  In the mountains, steaming hot days mean frigid nights, so every few minutes called for another layer of clothing.  My eyes drifted from the powerful draw of the fire pit’s flames as I got up for another beer.  To the west, the most beautiful pink sky was skirting over the distant peaks.  Knowing that time was limited, I left my opened beer in the truck box, grabbed my camera and tripod, and ran out of the campsite towards the highway for a better view. I only brought my wide focal length lens with me, which is a huge regret, but time was of the essence, and I still think I managed to capture that pink hue acting like a gradient over the mountain top, …