3 statues set amidst the green hillsides
After an overnight bus ride south of Bogota I arrived in San Agustin around 8am and after resting for a little bit I headed out to see the archaeolgical park with the mysterious statues. The countryside was nice and green with deep rolling hills, while the town itself was smaller than any place I had been in Colombia so far, which was nice for a change. It was a short 3 km walk to the park past lots of restaurants and small hotels and hostels. The statues in the park were really amazing, there were many different kinds and in different shapes and sizes. Originally the statues were found buried in man made stone tombs and were since removed from the tombs for display purposes. The park had several sites with groups of statues and was fairly crowded with Colombian tourists.
Close-up of the three statues under their stone burial cover
They didn´t have any booklets or literature on the origins or history of the statues so there wasn´t much to do but wander around the sites and look at the various statues. At one part there was a bridge across a river overlooking a massive series of carvings in the rock of the riverbed that formed really interesting shapes and channeled the water in intricate curves downstream. On the trail towards on of the sites there was a shack were they were pressing sugar cane juice from the raw sugar cane. It was pretty tasty when mixed with a touch of fresh squeezed orange juice, although with all the sugar in it, one glass was more than enough, and at fifty cents a glass not bad at all. After having lunch at one of the restaurants on the way back I tried to figure out my next destination, whether I would go see the burial tombs at Tierradentro or head to Popayan
for the carnavals there on the 5th and 6th. I decided to try to make it to Pasto as everyone said that the carnaval there was the best, so I bought a bus ticket for 6am the next morning, as the road is unsafe to travel on at night because it is very isolated and dangerous, in hopes that I could get to Popayan and then move on to Pasto the same day a total of 12 hours of bus rides. Everyone said that the road to Popayan was very rough but with beautiful scenery, I thought it would be worth it as the road goes in the valley right next to a large volcano.