Susie Bruce

Joined February 2017
  • Day20

    San Agustin

    April 19, 2017 in Colombia ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    We spent one day exploring San Agustin, famous for its stone statues. In the morning we walked around the town looking for them, then in the afternoon we visited the Archeological Park, a world heritage sight, where there was yet more statues. It rained heavily but still a nice day out.

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  • Day17


    April 16, 2017 in Colombia ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Next stop Manizales. On the first day we visited Nevado Del Ruiz, an active volcano. A bus took us up to 4500meters but we couldn't go any further as it would have been dangerous going right to the top. Unfortunately there was a lot of fog but when at the very end it settled and we were able to see some great views. On the way home we visited a hot spring - definitely a highlight for cold water-hating me.
    The next day the plan was to visit a coffee farm, then carry on south to stop off in Pereira for a night before continuing our journey. I was 10 minutes into the bus journey before I realised I'd left my passport back at the hostel. Luckily we were with a worker from the hostel at the time so agreed to carry on with the coffee farm tour and go back and get the passport after. The coffee farm was great, we spent 3 hours there exploring and learning all about coffee. We basically learned that even if you pay for 'top quality' beans, it's probably all a lie, so I will stick to my Nescafé instant for now. After the coffee farm it was a short 3 hour detour to go back to the original hostel, pick up my passport, drive past the coffee farm again and eventually arrive in Pereira. Bed time now....
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  • Day14


    April 13, 2017 in Colombia ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Doug taking a turn at this blog thing!
    Next stop Medellin, the place for coffee and cocaine...I was asked numerous times before coming to Colombia, why on earth are you going to Colombia of all places, I thought the answer was fairly self explanatory? (See above)
    Getting there involved another night bus, oh joy! Three hours after setting off Vin Diesel, or the Spanish guy pretending him to be him finally shut up!! But Susie snoring like a train didn't....So into an uneasy sleep.
    Next day we went on a Pablo Escobar tour, to be honest, I don't think Susie had any idea who this was, I though was extremely keen.

    The man who picked us up offered us a Coca Cola now and a gram of cocaine for later, we think he was joking, but on the other hand maybe not as it turns out he was one of Pablo Escobar's two drivers (the other one being on duty with Escobar when he died, so was also dead). This made Susie uneasy, a sense which was heightened a lot when the man shouted "NO PHOTO" in a Chinese mans face when he held his camera up to take a photo of the driver, apparently this was because he had never gone to prison and didn't want to go. I felt sorry for the Chinese man it just comes naturally to them! We also met Roberto Escobar, Pablo's brother, he was the "accountant" and spent 16 years in prison and got out early as he was a changed man, that and apparently $1 billion dollars changed hands. He also lived in a huge mansion so clearly still plenty of money kicking around.

    We then went to Parque Arví (a nature reserve and archeological site) but unfortunately we couldn't get in. Now maybe our Spanish still needs improvement but I think we were told it was at capacity. Or maybe it was because we looked dodgy as we got stopped my police 2 minutes later requesting out passports. So being told by numerous people that we should have our passports on us at all
    Times with the visa stamp we course were very organised....and did not have them on us. A argument broke out, the police in Spanish and us in English, needless to say we got nowhere. Eventually they accepted looking at a photo of our passports, which they then also took pictures of!!??? No idea why. We thought this was odd behaviour it did cross our minds that these weren't police at all!! So basically if this is the last post from us for 4 days or more, we have been abducted so please come help..............

    Lastly we went to Plaza Botero, a park with statues full of work from artist Fernando Botero, who specialised in naked statues of excessively fat people and animals! Naturally I felt right at home and joined in. Apparently statues are fine, real life not so much.
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  • Day11


    April 10, 2017 in Colombia ⋅ ⛅ 30 °C

    We spent two days here exploring the city. The first day we took a boat trip out to one of the islands outside the city. The boat broke down about 3 times during the trip which the driver seemed to think was perfectly normal. In between these times we would tend to go very fast, either being bounced up and down on our seats or being soaked by the water. We stopped off to watch a dolphin show and had lunch. The next day we explored the city. The inner city is enclosed by a wall so we walked this and then enjoyed a cocktail on the wall.Read more

  • Day5

    Villa de Leyva

    April 4, 2017 in Colombia ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

    Spent one day in this lovely village, where the film Zorro was filmed. Our room was beautiful, with a balcony overlooking our garden with hammocks we could enjoy. All this for the equivalent of a tenner a night. During the day we hired bikes and cycled round the main tourist attractions - the clay house, the fossil museum, the ostrich farm and the 'blue pools'. The square was lovely and the locals were very friendly.Read more

  • Day3

    COLOMBIA - Bogota

    April 2, 2017 in Colombia ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    One day spent here exploring the city. Took the cable car up to the 'top of the city'. Also a bicycle tour around the city, stopping off at coffee shops, fruit markets and finally a game of 'tejo' - throw a heavy rock at some markers filled with gunpowder and wait for the explosion!

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