by Vincent I. Porter
5 Very Good Reasons to go to Colombia
If you got hooked on Netflix’s Narcos, then you probably aren’t desperate to go to Colombia right now. Going by the series, the country is little more than a never-ending parade of drug cartels, terrorism and extreme violence.
Except that it is not like this at all.
In the past decade or so, Colombia has seriously cleaned up its act and it is now one of South America’s hottest travel destinations. Yes, the country still has its problems – name me on that doesn’t! But, the streets of Bogota and Medellin have replaced the sounds of gunshots with salsa music and laughter and the country is ripe for a big influx of tourism.
Are you still on the fence about travelling to Colombia? Here are five very good reasons why you should pack your bag right now and head over there.
It Is Cheap
I’m not sure about you, but cost is always at the top of my list when it comes to travelling. I like to get as much bang for my buck as possible and in Colombia your money can go really far. Honestly, Colombia probably won’t stay this cheap as more and more tourists are flocking here every year. But, right now you can live comfortably on around £40 per day. If you are on a real budget, £20 or even £15 a day is also possible.
It Is Insanely Beautiful
Colombia has every possible landscape you could want. It has the Amazon Rainforest in the South; misty highlands in the coffee region; golden beaches on the Caribbean coast; and some seriously impressive volcanoes scattered around the country. Whatever kind of scenery you were looking for, you will find it and more in Colombia. And, of course, if you ever want to take a break from this natural beauty, there are gorgeous colonial towns such as Guatape, Cartagena, Santa Marta, and Solento to enjoy.
The People Are Friendly
Again, Narcos painted all Colombians as malicious drug dealers who would shoot you in the face in a heartbeat. In reality, Colombians are as friendly as they come. In fact, most of the Colombians I met were just grateful that I had decided to visit their country despite its history. They wanted to tell me why Colombia was so great (not that I needed convincing) and to talk about Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the country’s Nobel Prize winning author.
You Can Disconnect From the Real World
On the Caribbean coast of Colombia, just an hour or so from Santa Marta, is Tayrona National Park. This beautifully conserved patch of lush, emerald jungle stretches out for miles, until it reaches the golden sand of Colombia’s finest beaches. There are no fancy hotels here. Instead, there are a few cabins and a lot of tents. There is also no WiFi or any form of electronic entertainment. Instead it’s just you and nature, spending some much-needed quality time together.
It Is an Excellent Place to Practice Your Spanish
The Spanish they speak in Spain is hard to understand. Any Latino will tell you that. They speak very fast, blend their words together and pronounce their ‘c’ like a ‘th’. In Colombia, however, it’s a completely different story. The Colombians are very proud of their accent, and rightly so. Words are pronounced properly and clearly, making it very easy to understand what is being said – even for someone who is not super confident with their language skills.