Lakes, hills and the mad Frenchies

Guatape Travel Blog

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stunning views every where you look...Guatape village in the distance to the right

Fully recharged after a decent nights sleep (loving the beds at Black Sheep!) and after a couple of hours of sorting crappy house/bank problems out via Skype, Ruaridh and I headed out for the day.  Kelvin had recommended going to Guatape as a nice chilled out place a couple of hours from Medellin.  We got the metro to the North bus terminal and then were lucky enough to jump straight on a local bus heading to Guatape ($CP10,000/£3/US$5).  A couple of hours of reading Adrian Mole:The Capuccino Years and Kelvin (who came with us with two Frenchmen Olivier and Christophe) got us up and off the bus at La Piedra.  Its a 200m high lump of rock (which looks a bit like Sugar Loaf in Rio), slap bang in the middle of a beautiful area of Antioquia.

  It looks more like Switzerland than what you would imagine of Colombia, and I was stunned by how beautiful it was.  We grabbed a bite to eat at the bottom and then headed up the 649 steps ($CP6,000/£2/US$3 entrance) to the summit.  Christ, was it tough!  It was a hot day (probably about 32 degrees or so), so it was sweaty stuff.  It made me realise yet again how bloody unfit I am - months of sitting on buses, planes and boats does little for your stamina I can tell you.  But every drop of sweat was worth it when we saw the views from the top - just stunning. 

Kelvin and the Frenchies came up at the same time and it was soon apparent there was more to these two chaps than at first met the eye.  It turns out they were part of Alliance Francaise and were in Colombia filming their own performances as a two-piece.

The random Frenchies performing!!
  Kelvin was in the directors chair (not literally of course, that would be ridiculous on the top of a bloody big stone) and Olivier and Christophe got changed into their outfits - kind of 1930s style suits with full face make-up - I had real trouble not bursting into laughter at the absurdity of it all.  Crazy!  As the film rolled, they started their routines - Christophe on banjo and Olivier singing a little French tune - totally bizarre.  Absolutely one of the most sureal moments of my trip so far.

To get back to reality, Ruaridh and I went back down and made the half hour walk to Guatape town, succesfully managing not to get run over on the main road, which had a inconsistent approach to providing footing for pedestrians.  When you've got loud chivas hairing round every corner, it gets kind of dicey.  Guatape is quite a nice little town, and we strolled round before getting the 5pm bus back to Medellin, ready for Friday night on the town!

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stunning views every where you loo…
stunning views every where you lo…
The random Frenchies performing!!
The random Frenchies performing!!
El Penol...the rock from where we …
El Penol...the rock from where we…
Not what you expect from Colombia,…
Not what you expect from Colombia…
photo by: AndySD