Medellin Travel Blog› entry 3 of 12 › view all entries
November 13th, 2009 – by: alexindc
Was greeted by a very friendly guide, who appeared to be a college student. He wouldn't let me speak Spanish, insisting that he speak English because he needs the practice. It was a little raw, but I could follow everything and besides, it was way better than my Spanish. I wish I could remember his name. Then the other guide, Diana, arrived and we loaded up on the bus, me and six tourists from Mexico city.
I did not expect this, but both guides took turns sitting next to me giving me an English version of the tour. Thye also both came out with me at most of the stops for a few minutes.
The route is circular from parque Poblado. Stops include parque botero, Parque boliviar (including la catedral metropolitana), parque pies descalzos (barefoot park), parque de Los deseos (which is across from the jardin botanico) and cerro nutibara. Each stop is between 20 and 30 minutes, so this is definitely more geared towards showing newcomers around the city so they can become better oriented. I definitely plan on gettig on the metro tomorrow and returning to the parque botero, parque pies descalzos, and parque de Los deseos/jardin botanico.
Oh, and the entire thing was only 15,000 pesos! For the service I got and the unique experience I had, WELL worth it.
Interesting things I learned about medellin today:
-the lettering on the backs of the jackets or vests of the seemingly ubiquitous motorcyclists isn't their gang or club; look closely: you'll see that it matches their license plate! Diana explained that this is so the police can easier identify them since many crimes (such as assassinations) used to be committed by people on motorcycles. Today, many bikers and their passengers will have their biker ID permenantly affixed to their jackets rather than wear it on a vest.
-cars, bikers and busses definitely have (or feel they have) the right of way at all times. If you have a crosswalk and no light, watch out!
-in a display of in your face progressivism, many of the sidewalks here have a lane for the blind! Look down and notice the narrow path with elevated bumps (kind of like a rumble strip). These paths all change shapes where there is a turn or a crosswalk, so the blind can tell that it's time to carefully cross the street.
Tomorrow: we attempt to conquor the metro!
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!