As announced in my last post, I recently booked a cheap flight to Cartagena and will be spending 8 full days next month traipsing around the Colombian coastline. South America was never in my immediate future travel plans, and to be honest I haven’t spent much time at all thinking about or researching it. But, you know, maybe that’s a good thing? Maybe for once I should override my tendency to over plan my travels and try my hand at truly spontaneous travel!
Though I can’t say Colombia held a spot on my bucket list, I’m actually really excited to visit. I like that Cartagena and the Colombian coastline aren’t hot topics in the world of travel, and that no one I know has ever been there. That hasn’t been the case with most of my travel destinations, and I’m eager to break the mold and discover a new place without many expectations.
And and and – my friend and fellow wedding photographer Nicki will be joining me in this Colombian adventure! We both have a tendency to travel frugally, take way too many photos, and prefer off the beaten path adventures, so all signs point to our travel styles meshing well. We haven’t planned a thing, but beaches, photo excursions, salsa dancing, and coffee are 100% happening.
And arepas. OH GOD, the arepas – just try and hold me back!
Old Town Cartagena
We’re a little wary of Cartagena being too touristy, but hey, if it is – we just won’t spend too much time there. But obviously, certain places attract hoards of tourists for a reason: because they’re AWESOME and well worth experiencing. Based on my recent google image search, I’m convinced that this city is going to charm the shorts off of me. Between its vibrant colonial architecture, walled city and fortress, and cobblestone streets, I’m pretty sure that we photographers are going to have a field day in this town.
I may be a teensy bit more excited about Colombia’s beaches than its cities. We’ve had a rough winter so far in New York, and come mid-February I know there’s nothing I’d rather do than be someplace beautiful in 80-degree sunshine getting a tan.
There are beaches all along the Colombian coast, but the ones I’m most excited about are within Tayrona National Park. Accessible via bus, trek, and then horse, getting there is an adventure in itself – but once you’re there, you pick a campground and then spend your entire time there beach hopping – maybe doing some jungle trekking if you’re feeling ambitious. I’m looking forward to lazing on the Caribbean Sea by day and sleeping in a hammock by night.