A quick trip to Minca, Colombia (bugs & waterfalls)
I am sooo behind on my updates. I just can't seem to find the time to blog since my time in South America is coming to an end and I'm trying to squeeze in a much stuff as possible. So I'm going to fast forward and skip a few things so I am back up to current times and where I am now. I'm currently in the coast of Colombia, specifically in Santa Marta. Santa Marta isn't that nice of a place so most, myself included, use it as a base to travel to other areas nearby. I have been to Minca, Taganga, and next will be heading to Tayrona National Park, Costeno Beach, and Palomino.
I have two words for Minca: Bugs & Waterfalls
My legs have been eaten alive from all the bugs there. But they're mysterious because they aren't like mosquitoes when you can see and hear them buzzing around you. I never see a bug land on me but next thing I know it's all over my legs. I have more red bumps like normal skin. It's also my fault for being stupid and not bringing bug spray but also for sleeping outside in a hammock all night.
There's a really cool hostel in the mountains called Casa Elemento and they're known for having giant hammocks overlooking the mountain and valley. It had such a good vibe up there! From the main town, it's a 3 hour hike up in the humid heat but I opted for a motorbike taxi instead. For less than $7USD, I got a 30 minute ride on the back of a motorbike. It's the only and best way to travel around Minca (so obviously not my only time using it over the 2 days). I'm guilty of hanging out that entire first day in Minca. I was supposed to go hike to a viewpoint with this Canadian girl but we ended up ordering a few drinks and she wasn't feeling the hike anymore. So then we decided to save the hike for the next day and just chilled on the hammocks, by the pool, and the fire at night.
To save a bit of money, I asked to help out that night for free dinner and discount on drinks. I worked in the kitchen for about 3 hours and basically earned $10usd? I know it's not a lot but in Colombia, it can go a long way and I'm always down to save $10 here and there. It was burrito night so I helped make the mix, stuff and fold the burritos, plate, and clean the kitchen after. It was really easy work so a good deal in my opinion.
That night was also the owner's birthday so they hired a band and had a big dance party late into the night. It was really lively and a good time! After the music, we sat around the campfire talking and hanging out. Again to save money, I booked to sleep in a hammock to save money. It was actually beyond comfy (except for waking up filled with bug bites).
So today it's actually touring Minca day. I got up early and headed out to the first waterfall. I went with 2 other girls but I was a bit faster than them so about 10 minutes from the waterfall I found a cute little house that served juice and such and decided to stop and wait for them there. I met a cool hippie girl from the UK who has been volunteering there for a few months now. It's a sustainable, eco house and they are trying to build a community there. She was working on different art projects for the house and two other volunteers from Lake Tahoe was building a treehouse in the back. It was super impressive! I ended up talking to her for over an hour probably and by the time I headed to the waterfall the other two girls had already arrived and spent their time in the water.
The waterfall wasn't that impressive to be honest... The "pool" area was pretty small and you couldn't even jump off or anything. Plus you had to pay, that probably turned me off the most. So if anyone is going to Minca, I wouldn't recommend it! The other one, Polo Azul, is a lot better. That's where I went next! I went down to Minca via motorbike because I got offered a ride for free, so why not. When I got into Minca I was debating on walking up but again it was hot and humid and I told myself being in the coast would be my relaxing time so no hiking for me. It was cheap for me to get up to the next waterfall and I stayed there for a bit since it had a bunch of different pools flowing into each other. The water was freezzzinnng but how could I NOT go in right? That would be a sin. As well as not jumping in.
Again lazy me took another bike down into Minca... sue me. It was about 4pm at that time and I hadn't eaten anything so I opted for a huge burger from Lazy Cat. I was muy muy delicioso and way too big to finish, even at how hungry I was. After, I walked around to digest and then jumped into a collectivo to head back to Santa Marta.