COLOMBIATHE AMERICAS

My 3 Crazy Travel Experiences In Colombia

Scariest Memories from Colombia

During my 9 months in Colombia, I had many adventurous experiences. Too many to count but these 3 experiences crossed over to the craziest/scariest territory. The kind of experiences when your heartbeat starts racing, survival instinct kicks in, your life flashes before your eyes. There’s a fine line between being adventurous and being stupid and I crossed(almost) that line on these below 3 occasions. I think I am addicted to adventure and I don’t feel fulfilled until and unless something adventurous doesn’t happen during my travels haha. So here’s my 3 crazy travel experiences in Colombia. Read on!

crazy travel experiences a night out
Our night out begins
Empty roads
crazy travel experiences a night out
The poster in question

CRAZY TRAVEL EXPERIENCES STORY 1: A NIGHT OUT 

In the first crazy travel experience in Colombia, I am going to talk about my Couchsurfing experience in a city that shall remain nameless. This city has nothing to offer as far as tourism is concerned but I was still looking forward to visiting the city because of my Couchsurfing host. My Couchsurfing request was accepted by a teenager who has been hosting for several years now. I have never been hosted by such a young individual and he has good references too. I love meeting all kinds of people because I truly believe that one can learn something from each and every one. My host is pursuing law and politically active. He doesn’t have parents and lives with an eccentric artist. I guess that goes without saying since all artists are eccentric. I reached late at night at my host’s place. He and his friends welcomed me, They are in the 18-20 age group. They were doing some sort of experiment with glass bottles. When I asked one of his friends. He said they are making “Bomba”. Just so I don’t misinterpret it. I asked “Do you mean “Bomb” and he nodded. I just looked at him and tried to unheard what I just heard. I asked my host and he explained. There was a protest happening in the city against police brutality and these college students are going to held a protest against the police. They have been preparing themselves in the worst-case scenario with bottle bombs. So we even went to a small ground nearby to test one of those bottle bombs. I was just following and observing them like a journalist. These young lads had such high-level energy that I was so overpowered by it. These bottle bombs were not just for the protest which I find out later. After doing our little experiment, My host invited me to tag along with them to a place where I am going to see something really interesting. I just went with the flow. We were 6 people. A couple, me, my host and 2 guys. It was after midnight. After walking for good 90 minutes we reached a spot where my host explained the dynamics. So he instructed me to be with the couple from the group and if the police asked me anything I should not speak a word in Spanish and let them handle it. Okay so I had only one question “Where the hell police came into the picture?” So he explained to me further that I and the couple are going to maintain a good long distance from the other 3 guys including my host and we all will meet them at a designated spot which the couple knows and then we will take a taxi back home. Okay, so it checked all the boxes of sounding like a heist. While the 3 guys went away, I have been filled with the rest of the details by the couple. They pointed me towards a big banner with a political figure. The huge banner was partially burnt. When they asked me “Can you guess who burnt that banner”. I understood their plans. They are going to complete their previously incomplete job with the help of bottles bombs. I was too excited to think about it logically. For me, it felt like I was a part of some kind of revolution even though I had a very faint idea about this political figure and Colombian politics in general. Shortly, I saw the flames were burning the poster. It was such a striking sight. We met the guys at the designated spot and we took a taxi back home. The guys were not happy since their little operation did not quite hit the mark. The guys were disappointed but not hopeless. They were already planning to return and complete the job. I feel I was lucky to be able to experience the energy and the thought process of these young lads. Surely a crazy travel experience!

 

crazy travel experiences almost deadly trek
Beginning of the trek
Nice cafe on the way
About to reach the viewpoint
crazy travel experiences almost deadly trek
Reached!
crazy travel experiences almost deadly trek
Beautiful view of the canyon
Descends begins!
crazy travel experiences almost deadly trek
Cactus all around
crazy travel experiences almost deadly trek
This picture may look funny now haha
crazy travel experiences almost deadly trek
Still following the path
crazy travel experiences almost deadly trek
Finally made it to land and hitchhiked to the town
The Town

 

CRAZY TRAVEL EXPERIENCES STORY 2: DEADLY(ALMOST) TREK 

My next crazy travel experience in Colombia. It is one of the toughest treks of my life. Scratch that. The toughest trek of my life! Not because it was difficult neither it was long but still it felt like “It is the last day of my life”. Here’s what happened. So I was doing the Barichara- Guane- Villanueva- Jordan- Los Santos trek. I was on the second day of my trek. I spent a night at Villanueva after hiking from Barichara. My plan was to reach Jordan and if I had ample energy then even went all the way to Los Santos and stay a night there. So I left for Jordan early in the morning. The way is not at all difficult and after walking for more than a couple of hours I reached a viewpoint. From this viewpoint, one can see the beautiful view of Chicamocha Canyon. I was so hypnotised by the view that I lost track of the time and something else. I finally left from there to continue my journey to Jordan. I had to climb down the mountain to reach Jordan. Simple, Right? It was such a hot and humid afternoon. Under the scorching sun, I started my descend. It is a desert mountain with no plants or trees. Just some shrubs and a lot of cactus! After 20 minutes, I had the strong urge to drink water and it turned out I forgot my water bottle at the viewpoint. I decided to continue my journey anyway. After another 20 minutes, I couldn’t able to take the heat anymore. I removed some clothes from my bag and wrap them around my head to save myself from the heat. My throat was literally going numb. I just continued walking without thinking too much. I don’t know when but at a certain point it felt like I lost control of my body and it is just walking to survive. The survival instinct was so strong that it has overpowered my body. I knew if I don’t get water soon. I was going to faint. All sorts of thoughts were crossing my mind. Is this the end of me? Am I going to see my family and my country again? It was nothing short of a nightmare. After walking for around two and half hours from the viewpoint. I finally made it to flat land. I was desperately searching for a human being which I didn’t find but I do find a small stream of water. I literally pushed my head into the water. I didn’t care a damn about what kind of water it was. I drank and drank and drank. For me, that spot, at that point in time was nothing short of heaven and the best part was I was not dead haha. After getting my life back, I hitchhiked to the town of Jordan and eat a lot of food. I mean a lot! I felt like I got a new lease on life. After resting for a while, I decided to end my adventure and head back to Barichara. I took public transport back to Barichara and skipped going to Los Santos town. Another crazy travel experience comes to an end.

crazy travel experiences deserted park
Entering the park
Little did I knew what was about to come!
crazy travel experiences deserted park
A little before the incident point


CRAZY TRAVEL EXPERIENCES STORY 3: A DESERTED PARK 

The third crazy travel experience in Colombia: At the end of my post-quarantine travel in Colombia, I booked a ticket to Mexico City from Medellin. I deliberately booked a ticket from Medellin because I wanted to visit the city before leaving the country where I spend almost 6 months of my life in Quarantine. One day, I planned to meet my Turkish friend who was also stuck with me in Medellin during the quarantine period. I told him to meet me near El Volador Hill. It was my second last day in Colombia. Several of my friends from Medellin warned me about going to El Volador Hill in the afternoon but I chose to neglect their warnings. I have been to this park before during the quarantine period but I was unable to explore the park back then as It was closed for the public. I met my Turkish friend and we had tea before going to the El Volador Hill National park. Turkish people and Tea are like synonyms haha. El Volador Hill is the largest park in Medellin. After reaching the entrance(more like a backdoor entrance) of the park, we saw a couple who seems to be choosing not to go inside the park and we chose to ignore them too! So we finally entered the park while reminiscing about our time in Medellin during quarantine and how the city feels so different now after the quarantine. We saw a guy inside the park going in the opposite direction. We were happy to see another human being and our conversation diverted to “how people exaggerate things”. While we were on this topic, we saw another guy. He was a homeless-looking guy but it didn’t bother us. Our conversation diverted again to the homeless guy we befriended during the quarantine period whom we used to talk to almost every day from our hostel’s balcony. We kept going towards the homeless guy in El Volador Hill park. When we were at the safe distance from him, He removed a rather big knife from his pocket. Yep! And the survival instinct kicks in. We just ran in the opposite direction. The Turkish guy was too fast. He was leading me. We saw the same guy whom we saw before and he was coming towards in our direction. I was like “Sh*t we are trapped”. The logical explanation was these two guys are together and now they had us trapped but the Turkish guy ran past him and the guy didn’t do anything. I was so relieved. When I was about to cross him, I warned him about the homeless guy but used the wrong word. I said “Cuchara(Spoon)” instead of “Cuchillo(Knife)” and the guy was clearly confused. I corrected myself immediately and he ran too haha. Then something crossed my mind and I asked both the guys to not go in that direction instead we take the middle path and go downhill towards the main road. They followed me and we made it to the main road. We had a good laugh after reaching the main road but we kept running away (as far as possible) from the park. When we ponder over the incident, we came to the conclusion that the guy wanted to scare us with a knife and get something out of us. He was too weak to run and follow us. My 9 months in Colombia surely came to an end with a rather scary and crazy travel experience!

Tags
Show More

An Indian Traveler

Hello! My name is Saurabh and I am the voice behind the “An Indian Traveler” blog. I'm a cinephile, travel writer, an avid traveler with a song stuck in my head which I keep humming till ad nauseam :)

Related Articles

28 Comments

  1. I’m glad all three crazy travel experiences and Colombia have come out happily, and that you now have a lot of fun storytelling material! Thank you for sharing these adventures with us!
    Nina

  2. Wow, so many interesting adventures – though your trek – and not having water, is something that I wouldn’t ever want to experience, but I am glad you made it out!

  3. I don’t think I can stand trekking without water and under the scorching heat of the Sun. That must have been very tough, thinking about it.

  4. Those are adventures I am glad you lived to tell. Climbing with no water in the heat can be so overtaxing on us. I know that one too well.

  5. Wow what crazy experiences! This is what makes the travel so beautiful. I have had similar experiences like your third one where I have ignored the warnings and gotten into trouble. Luckily I did not have any man chasing me with a knife. It makes an awesome story to tell but while experiencing it , it freaks you out.

  6. Omg.. glad you came out of these alive. Running out of water in the desert is a scary thing. This is one of my biggest fears of traveling/hiking alone. The fear of getting injured or running out of food/water with no one around to help. Anyway, love reading your stories!

  7. Those experiences you had are really scary. I would have screamed at the top of my lungs if I saw that homeless man with a knife! Be careful next time and always buddy up with somebody when hiking/trekking.

  8. The pictures from your trip are beautiful! I have always wanted to visit Colombia. I’m glad you had an overall safe trip, even if there were a few scary times!

  9. I have had locals tell me not to go to certain places and I have listened to them. I have seen demonstrations in other countries and kept away from them as I have no intention of experiencing jails anywhere on this planet. I think there is nothing wrong experiencing life to its fullest as long as the emphasis is on LIFE. That is the one thing that you never get back.

  10. I seem to consider travel to Columbia often but haven’t made the trip yet. I’m not quite sure how I would have dealt with a coachsurfing host making a bomb but am positive I would not have been as calm about it as you were! I would have been the one to trip and fall running from someone with a knife – but lesson learned at the park, if warned, do not enter.

  11. Indeed such a travel experience to share to everyone! I love to travel but I have never tried Couch-surfing. Surely another one of a kind experience too. Glad that you were safe after such experience.

  12. Always great to look back at travel adventures. But I am not sure I would want to be mixed up in a protest in Columbia and with bottle bombs! Glad you found water on your crazy hike and hope the water you drank didn’t make you sick. I am sure you learned some lessons from these incidents. But there will be others as you push the boundaries in your travels.

  13. Wow, you have definitely had some stories! I’m glad you made it through them, especially the people with the bombs. I think I’d have been running the other direction!

  14. OMG! I am glad you are okay after all of these! The first story is the maddest to me…I love that you just went with the flow, but it must be pretty stressful to think how it might have been different if police were there.

    The story with lack of water must have been awful! It is so good you didn’t get sun stroke!

    And Eep for the guy with the knife, but I sort of love that you said he was armed with a spoon! That is the kind of language mistake I make! 😀

  15. Love reading about your travel experiences in Colombia! I also stayed with some Couchsurfing hosts before but I’ve never had such a crazy experience like you did! Making a bomb and maybe involving the police? OMG. It must feel exciting to be a part of the revolution I think. The story of you in the park sounds a bit scary too!

  16. Oh my what adventure you attract along your journey! Your start with the couch surfing incident would deter me from ever doing that again. But you’re calm approach to travel, curiosity and adventure keeps you trekking. You must have so many stories from you 9 months spent in Colombia. Now that’s a serious traveller!

  17. Interesting and crazy stories indeed, I liked the couch surfing experience the most. I wonder what incited those kids so much to device a full fledged agenda. Quite something to be a part of it on a deserted night in a foreign land.

  18. OMG that is quiet a crazy travel experience. Though it is crazy, it’s these kind of different experience that stay with you through the life. I have had my share of crazy travel experiences and narrating them is always fun.

  19. Sometimes the worst travel experiences make really good stories afterwards. I can imagine that the couch surfing incident was a tricky one. When people host you, you do not want to question their actions much. But at least it seems they tried to act responsible towards you. Good that you got out unscarthed of the two other incidents as well. Keep traveling!

  20. Oh my gosh! These were really crazy experiences! Especially the one with the bomba. I wonder whether people who couchsurfed before you had the same experiences. I enjoyed reading this post very much.

  21. These are three crazy experiences for sure! Couchsurfing can be hit or miss, but the second story is a risk all of us face when doing hikes and treks, especially alone. I always try to bring water but it’s just not possible to be prepared 100% of the time. As for the third story, that would freak me out so much! I have had one major robbing and a couple of close calls, but never involving a knife. I’m glad you made it out without being hurt or extorted though!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Close
Close