Saturday, January 31, 2009

Bogota the other days

Saturday morning January 31, 2009 - it is cloudy and a few rain drops we are on the way to the Gold Museum and the place to get chocolate and cheese (Ari´s recommendations) Florida Cafe. Also looking for a bus to go South so will make a stop at the bus depot, a very busy place.
At this time Helmut is re packing his backpack, could not find anything and discovered more strings, snaps and compartments. Suggestion: open the backpack before you use it and try all compartments don´t just pack it!
Dinner time is difficult, many places serve big Lunch and close at 4:00PM.
Our hotel is very close to a large University, just like in the States there is a lot of drinking going on here and many places live of the students.
More about Saturday -went to the Gold Museum (great place).

The city center on Saturday.

Had a snack at Cafe Florida Cake (like Pulla) with cheese and hot chocolate (Ari´s recomendation). Picture below.

Then we had a great Colombian meal - Ajiaco Santafereno a soup with 3 types of potatos, chicken and much more (see picture below) at the restaurant La Pola (a Lonely Planet recommendation) was right next to our Hotel.

The soup!

The restaurant owner and several friends (one German) invited us to their table and we had a l

ot to drink, we were the last ones in the restaurant (5:30PM) closing time. Picture below.

Sunday morning we will take a bus and be on the way to Melgar, Southern Colombia about a 5 Hour bus ride.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Bogota - the first days in Colombia

January 29, arrived 9:45 PM in Bogota nice Taxi drive with no hussle from driver.
Clean looking city on way to hotel and when walking in evening.
Clean hotel, but noisy at night so need ear plugs.
Wether is good around 60 F not raining. Will walk and explore the town Friday.
Friday - walked the town, Botero Museum, plazas and streets also up to the highest point in Bogota with the cable car (picture Meinhard).
On top of Monserrate the highest point in Bogota 3,600 meters (about).

It is a busy city, 8.2 million people?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Ready to leave - the night before!

In the morning with the local METRA train to the airport and then Delta over Atlanta to Bogota.
Will meet Helmut at the Hotel for a drink or two or three.

One backpack and one small daypack (that can be attached to the backpack), never traveled this light and there is still space left. The clothing on the bed is what I wear on the way. Backpack has handles to carry and also straps to carry on back. It is a 92 ltr or about 6,000 cu. in. Eagle Creek Grand Voyager fro REI.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Backpacks - Yes NO suitcases!

Meinhard's backpack.

Helmut's new backpack for this trip.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Countdown to Bogota Colombia

January 29, 2009 is the day we meet in Bogota - Helmut leaving the night before from Lake Alfred making it by train to Miami to board a plane for Bogota and arriving around Noon in Bogota.Meinhard is leaving by communter train from Grayslake, Il to O"Hare airport to board a Delta flight at 11:00AM to fly to Bogota, over Atlanta, arriving in Bogota 9:45PM. Reservations have beeen made at the Platypus Hotel 

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A preliminary list of places and hostels



Web Address







(57-1) 341.3104

 Calle 16 No. 2-43, Bogota, Colombia 


Hostel Trail


2 831 7871

Carrera 11 No. 4-16 Popayan

San Augustin

El Jardin


8 837 3455

Carrera 11 No. 4-10  San Agustin


Koala Inn



Calle 18 No. 22-37 Pasto


Iguana (Suisse)


032 6613522

Avenida 9N No. 22N-46


Plantation House


315 409 7039

Alto del Coronel Calle 7 No. 1-04


Finca Villa Maria

Carrera 13 No 14-60 Local 109 Centro Comercial


(6) 3349883 - 3349916

Marbella / Pereira


Mountain House


00 57 (6) 887 4736

Calle 65 No 24-97 Avenida Lindsay Barrio Guayacones


Casa Mayde


034 312 1248

Calle 10 37-39  Poblado  Medellin


Black Sheep Hostel



Transversal 5a No. 45-133 Barrio Patio Bonito


Hostal Real


5 664 7866

Calle De La Magdalena No. 9-33  Cartagena




Santa Marta

Casa Familiar


5421 1697

Calle 10c No. 2 - 14  Santa Marta


La Casa de Felipe



Casa Blanca


Hotel Las Nieves


7 681 0144

Calle 30 No. 25-71 GirĂ³n

San Gil

Macondo Guesthouse


311 8282 905

Calle 12 No. 7-26, San Gil


La Casa Amarilla



Cra1 #13-59 La Albarrada con Santa Barbara Mompos




(57-1) 341.3104

 Calle 16 No. 2-43, Bogota, Colombia 

1967 - The last day in Colombia and on the way to the USA

Planning - Colombia for One Month Trip

It all started with ideas about re-visiting South America as we did in 1967 when we traveled from South Africa through South America to the United States.

A Rough itinerary was developed by Helmut December 2008:


Arrive in Bogota. Stay a couple days to look city over. Can do more upon return after trip's conclusion.


Head South to Popayan, Purace National Park, San Augustin, boat rafting, etc.)


Further South, Pasto and its surroundings (including Volcan Azufral, most picturesque lake in Colombia: Laguna de la cocha, West of Pasto: Tomaco (on Pacific)


Fly round trip from Pasto to Leticia/Amazon. (visit various tribes by boat, etc.)


Upon return to Pasto, head North, to Cali. Spend a couple days visiting Rocio’s relatives. My cousin Politico will show us around, I am sure).


Head further North to Manizales, glaciers, thermo springs)


Next Northern stop Medellin, explore finca Villa Maria.


Next Caribbean, through Cartagena, Barranquilla, and Santa Marta. Stay a few days around Taganga, a fisher village north of Santa Marta at the Caribbean).


Finally, heading South toward Bogota: Stops at Bucaramanga (huge paragliding area - not that I want to try, or perhaps yes??), San Gil (nearby Barichara is regarded as the most beautiful colonial town in Colombia).


Of course this is a very loose itinerary: We can improvise as we go along…I am sure Ari can provide some more suggestions.