Colombia In 18 Days! The Whole Schibang

For the last six Mondays we’ve brought you a review of each stop from an 18 day group trip down the backpacking trail through Colombia. We started in Bogota, and then made our way to San Gil, Barichara, Cartagena, Tayrona National Park, and Medellin.

Hopefully you enjoyed the videos, if you missed them you can click on the links below.

Right now maybe you’re busy or you only have so much time or maybe you just like seeing each stop by itself. Well these are the links for you. Pick your shot! Or take them all, we’ve lined them all up on the bar for you!

Part I – Bogota

Part II – San Gil

Part III – Barichara

Part IV – Cartagena

Part V – Tayrona Nat’l Park

Part VI – Medellin

Or maybe you want to chug the whole trip like a cold can of beer. Well, you can do that too. Just click on the video player below and you can watch the stops summarized all into one video.

Or maybe you’re totally hardcore. Maybe you wanna go way beyond just chugging a can of beer. All right, we have something just for you maniacs. If you’re ready for the whole freakin’ show or you want to do a keg stand, click on the link below!

If you have any questions regarding Colombia leave me a comment or send me an email and I will answer them as best as I can. I’m happy to make suggestions or help with planning an itinerary.

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Colombia In 18 Days! Part VI — Medellin

We now continue Colombia In 18 Days!, reviewing a 18 day backpacking trip through fascinating Colombia in the fall of 2010. If you want to see the previous installments of this review please click on the links below. At the bottom of each article is a video with more photos and videos for a more detailed look into each destination.

Part I

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Part V

Last week I reviewed our time exploring Tayrona National Park. From there we took a taxi to Santa Marta Airport. We then flew to The City Of The Eternal Spring, Medellin. By that time we had grown tired of the epic, freezing, and dangerous bus journeys through Colombia.

flying into Medellin


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Colombia In 18 Days! Part V : Tayrona National Park

We now continue Colombia In 18 Days!, reviewing a 18 day backpacking trip through fascinating Colombia in the fall of 2010. If you want to see the previous installments of this review please click on the links below. At the bottom of each article is a video with more photos and videos for a more detailed look into each destination.

Part I

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Last week I reviewed our time in and around Cartagena. From Cartagena we headed out to see Tayrona National Natural Park. After a night in a dodgy hostel in Santa Marta we took a taxi to the national park. It was pouring down rain when we arrived without reservations for the night! Fortunately for us we came across Castilletes Campground which was completely vacant when we arrived. Unfortunately there was no electricity as well, but for one night it wasn’t much of a problem.

the entrance sign to Castillete

the road leading into the campground

the main house at Castillete, rumored to be a former hideout of a drug kingpin

hammocks and camping space

The morning that followed we woke up early to attempt to escape the mid-day heat for our hike through the jungle and along the beaches.

after a short walk along the road we entered into the jungle on the trail


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Colombia In 18 Days! Part IV — Cartagena

exhausted after a long journey from San Gil to Cartagena

After our rafting adventure near San Gil and our sightseeing in Barichara our adventure continued in mesmerizing Cartagena. I don’t think that you could find many people who’ve visited Colombia that would not conclude that Cartagena is an essential place to see in Colombia. In Cartagena we saw a Spanish fortress, the colonial Old Town, the beach at Bocagrande, enjoyed incredible nightlife, and visited a nearby mud volcano!

If you’ve missed any of the previous entries about our trip, 18 Days in Colombia!, you can click on these links below:

Part I – Bogota

Part II – San Gil

Part III – Barichara

Be sure to watch the video at the bottom of this article to see more photos from Cartagena and to see what it was like to be inside a mud volcano!

One of the best experiences in Cartagena is free! Just walking around inside the walled city is free. There are a number of sculptures, shops, restaurants, bars, and nightclubs in the colonial Old Town.

Clock Tower Building entrance into the walled Old Town

a street inside the walled city

shops in Old Town


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Colombia In 18 Days! Part III — Barichara

Hills and streets of Barichara

Last week we recounted our time in San Gil, Colombia and the amazing whitewater rafting on Rio Suarez. We began the review of our 18 days in Colombia with the capital of the country, Bogota. This Monday we recap our day in Barichara.

The charming colonial village of Barichara, Colombia is only a 40 minute shuttle ride away from San Gil. It makes a great day trip from San Gil or you could stay a few days if you truly want to get away from it all.

We took the 40 minute shuttle there from San Gil. Then we walked around the village. We walked uphill to the top of the village as recommended to see a phenomenal view of the valley.

the spectacular view of the valley below


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Colombia In 18 Days! Part II — San Gil

at the Bogota bus station

Last week I showed you the first stop of our trip through Colombia in 18 Days! Today I show you the second stop, San Gil. San Gil is widely known for its outdoor adventure activities. It was a place I wish I had more time to explore. I feel like I missed out on some things. Colombia is a country I can definitely picture myself coming back to, so hopefully I can return to San Gil and see the things I missed the first time around.

We arrived at the bus station in the middle of the night. We had no reservations for the night so we found ourselves exhausted and knocking on the door of a hostel around 3am. Luckily the manager was kind enough to let us in. San Gil had a pleasant small town atmosphere. We wandered around a bit and then arranged our whitewater rafting trip.

manager of Hostel Santander Aleman

Parque Principal


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Colombia In 18 Days! — Part I : Bogota

A li’l while ago I showed you the preview trailer for a trip I took with some friends in August 2010. Over the next seven Mondays I will show you a short video from each stop we made on the backpackers trail in Colombia. I hope you enjoy them. The first video is at the bottom of this post.

To begin our adventure we all flew in from Los Angeles to Bogota, Colombia. We stayed at Destino Nómada Hostel in the La Candelaria area where most backpackers stay. It was a nice, convenient hostel to stay at. The first day and a half Jose, Mathieu and I walked around La Candelaria taking in the sights. We checked out Plaza de Bolivar, Catedral Primada, and the Botero Museum. For my first dinner in Colombia I enjoyed a bowl of Ajiaco, a thick traditional soup with potatoes, chicken, avocado, dairy cream, herbs, and corn. After dinner, the owners of the hostel invited us along for a night out in Zona Rosa including lots of shots of aguardiente.

Destino Nomada Hostel


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Colombia in 18 Days – Preview trailer

A few weeks ago I shared some of the highlights of a group trip to Brazil. After that phenomenal trip my compatriots and I were yearning for another international adventure. A year and a half later we hopped on another plane and headed to Colombia. What ensued was an unforgettable journey on the backpacking trail through Colombia. The trip included stops in Bogota, Medellin, Santa Marta, Cartagena, San Gil, Tayrona National Park, and Barichara. It also included quite a variety of sights and experiences. Here is a little preview of the adventure.

Keep your eyes on this site for more about this trip in the future!