The last couple of days I’ve been in La Guajira, one of the 32 departments of Colombia, this department is on the Caribbean coast and it’s beautiful with the most northern point of South America, Punta Gallina, with beautiful beaches in Cabo de la Vela and around a desert with filled with cactuses, rocks and sand. And this place is bloody hot. I love it!
From Santa Marta I left way too late to Riohacha (2,5 hours) to get into a shared van (cooperativa) to Quatro vias and then a jeep to Cabo de la Vela. I was so lucky after Riohacha the people wait until the cars are filled up. But I didn’t have to wait any longer than 15 minutes to go to the next place. (An Israeli couple was waiting 2 hours for the last jeep). From 9.30 to 16.30 I was on the road. The last part in the jeep was a very bumpy ride, I had my hopes up when I saw a part of the road was asphalt but soon I realized it was only about 200 meters. But it’s part of the experience.
At Cabo de la Vela I stayed at Kite Addict, http://kiteaddictcolombia.com not to do any Kite Surfing (not a good plan with my hernia, it was still recovering from the bumpy jeep ride) but to spend the nights in the big hammocks they call chinchorro, sleep under the bright beautiful stars. The people there are so friendly always many people (kite instructors, other staff and tourist) and they love to explain cultural differences. I had a very nice time with the people running the place there.
The first day I went to spots around Cabo de la Vela: Playa del Pilon, Pilon de Azucar and La virgin de Fatima. Rent a motorbike and go around or if you enjoy walking a lot and bring enough water and sunscreen with you, you can also walk, that’s what the Italian guy did I met. He is also vegetarian so we tried to find a vegetarian place and we were recommended a French restaurant. I was wondering in the poorest department of Colombia I’m going to support a French restaurant, really… well hell yes! These two French guys:
- With the profit they feed local children (between 25 and 100 every day) the foundation is called Soy juya
- They have the best food ever
- It’s the nicest restaurant with nice music and good atmosphere (only open for dinner)
So everyone wins! I only forgot the name of the place, so it you are in or are going to Cabo, EAT WITH THOSE FRENCH GUYS! It’s called Hemet’s
The next day we left for Punta Gallina the most Northern Point of Colombia, and of South America. After a couple of hours with too many people in a jeep, a driver who was maybe practicing for the Dakar race since he was just going as fast as possible but with some short breaks: seeing black flamingo’s, eating palitos de queso (cheese sticks) and a 15 minutes boat ride and then we arrived around 14.00 at a beautiful place where we have lunch, dinner and sleep they arrange the tour to Punta Gallina, a beautiful lookout point and Playa Taroa, with their golden dunes and a nice refreshing swim in the ocean. A little bit of time to catch up with my reading and some relaxing.
The final day we left and the driver was an old guy, he was an indigenous guy and could tell a lot about the culture, bout history and the people. He was stopping for everyone who was trying to stop the cars to give food, water, money. Some drivers just horn until they open the roads. Most of the time children do this job of asking toll, sometimes you have to pay 4 times within 200 meters….
This asking for toll is just a rope with some fabric hanging on it, sometimes they actually maintain the roads for the toll sometimes they don’t.
That day I was supposed to visit the project of the French guys I was soooo looking forward to it. But unlike I was told before that we would be in time before 11.00 to see the project it seemed impossible. It was 13.30 and I also needed to go to Santa Marta. So I went straight to Santa Marta. Very sad, since those guys were expecting us to visit. To Santa Marta it was quite a ride being checked 3 times by police having the bus broken down once I didn’t made it before 19.00 (and my dad who was waiting in Santa Marta was sooo worried…)
3 nights and 4 days I was lost in the desert, it was beautiful time!
For people going there:
- No signal, nobody can call no internet totally disconnected.
- In Cabo you can buy everything, just bring enough cash there isn’t an ATM
- For Punta Gallinas bring enough water (5L p.p. is more than enough but you can give what you have left on your way out)
- Eat with those French guys! Eat at Hemet’s