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I was lucky enough to spend some time earlier this year touring Colombia- it was my first visit and I spent most of my all-too-brief time there wondering why I’d waited so long.
Colombia is pretty darn big, but from the parts I did see my highlight was the Tayrona National Park- where the Caribbean shores meet rainforest in the shadow of a snow-capped mountain.
Though there are many more isolated and longer trails, though I couldn’t resist the coastal path, which, for around four hours, gave me one of the best walks of my life.
I loved ducking in-and-out of the shade of the forest, and up-and-over rocky outcrops that open out onto pristine isolated beaches. Though, you couldn’t swim off most of them because of the strangely treacherous currents.
And just as my legs started to get a little weary, the perfect rest stop of El Cabo de San Juan opened up before me. A meal of simply fried fish, a cold beer, then a relaxing rest on the beach by the sheltered, and safely swimmable, bay.
I would have happily stayed all day, but part of what made the place so special is that it was only accessible on foot (or hoof!).
My deep and longstanding fear of horses this meant that I’d be walking back. But it didn’t matter- I walked the same way back but I barely recognised it because the landscape changed with every turn in the trail. How did I miss all those mangroves on the way there?
There were a fair few Colombians visiting Tayrona when I did, though the authorities seem to take care to limit numbers enough to maintain the environment while allowing visitors to enjoy it. It’s special, and I’m going back for more.