Saturday, 10 May 2008

Bad Girl, What ya gonna do?

We flew from Bogota to Baranquilla in the north of Colombia and caught a bus to Santa Marta which is a pleasant enough seaside town. It was 38 celcius and extremely humid. The main attraction was the local national park which has some great beaches and excellent snorkelling. Bring your own snorkelling gear as its passed directly from previous renter to you, snot, spit and all - yeuch!
There seems to be 3 price levels for most things (taxis, hotels, beers)
1. Local yocal cheap price
2. Local tourist cheap price
3. Gringo Paddy, rip the shirt off your back price!

Guess which one I was being asked to pay?

Its expensive here for food, hotel etc even when you haggle the local tourist price.
Next we visited Cartagena (5 hours east) which is steeped in historical significance. It has an old castle overlooking the city and an old town section surrounded by a fortress and some beautiful colourful colonial style buildings.

We stayed in a hostel and woke up at 5am to a full on brawl going on in the courtyard. Some loud ass drunk bee-atch was screaming "Llama la policia Mama!" (call the cops - yo!) over and over. Thankfully after 30 minutes of this farce she got her wish and the boys in blue hauled her drunk ass down to the station for being drunk and disorderly!

We sang ourselves back to sleep to the tune of "Bad Girl, Bad Girl, What ya gonna do? What ya gonna do when they come for you?" - FYI - Theres a law against disturbing my sleep - Youve all been warned!


Nick May 10, 2008 5:19 am  

Ah, tourist rip-offs, the same the world over, eh? So even speaking the language doesn't help very much? Mind you, I suppose some places are almost entirely dependent on tourism so they're desperate to winkle as much out of you as they can.

VE May 10, 2008 2:26 pm  

So...would you recommend Columbia? It's one of the only South American countries I haven't been to (Paraguay, Boliva, French Guayana being the others).

Baino May 10, 2008 5:29 pm  

Snorkel spit! Euuwww. I suppose they do the same in the goggles to stop 'em fogging up. At least after your recent visit with the snots you can payback some other unsuspecting sucker! Wear a panama and draw on a moustache so they'll think you're a local!

Quickroute May 12, 2008 7:59 pm  

Nick: I don't have a problem with tiered pricing as long as its within reason. It seems to be getting worse down here however and unfortunately there are some for whom a dollar or ten dollars doesn't make much difference and that ruins it for the rest of us on a budget!

VE: You are well traveled! It's definitely worth a visit here just to get a little off the beaten tourist track and the beaches on the north coast are very nice.

I've been to Paraguay and didn't think it that appealing but Bolivia was very interesting. Guayana (both of them or on my list for another time)


We bought cheap snorkel gear in anticipation of the health hazard but it disintegrated in minutes (you get what you pay for!) I pity the individual who had to use the gear after me as you say I am still to the brink with germs!

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