I was invited to join 3 others in traveling to Cartagena for 1 night and driving 2 hours to Barranquilla for a three night stay - during Colombia's Carnival.
Has anyone on BBI been to Colombia (Cartagena or Barranquilla)and/or the Carnival. I have done a lot of research online the past few days and I'm left both excited with this once in a lifetime trip opportunity - but also nervous due the stories of crime and all things that are related to Colombia.
I understand that the country has gotten a lot more safe for tourism in the last 10 years and if we don't walk around like Lavar Ball's Big Ballers - the odds are in our favor of us being left alone. I would be traveling with 3 other American's all 30 years old. We've been all over Europe together and enjoy getting wild but understand this is a third world country and not a quick trip to Amsterdam or Dublin.
I've come to the forum before and I got great insight before a few of my backpacking trips through Europe so I was hoping for some helpful comments again.
Thanks and Happy New Year to all my fellow NYG fans.
I had a client come in today who recently returned from a trip to Columbia. He is in his 70s and went with his wife and another couple. He raves about the trip and said he never felt unsafe. Accomadations were reasonable and he said dinners were very inexpensive. He enjoyed the experience.
Its as safe as any other place. Just keep your head about you and just have fun. Don't be the ugly americans over there either thinking you can just party and be drunk and obnoxious over there (not saying you are). Be respectful, have fun, don't try to buy "illegal" drugs over there. Just keep it straight and you should be good.
Not sure about your marital situations but if you're looking to pick up girls it can be rather easy. You're Americans. They all think we are millionaires. And to them you are because you'll see how far an american dollar can take you. But be respectful. Don't be like the secret service guys that went there a few years ago and not pay your hooker (which are Grad A meat btw) or don't try to not give a girl a drink that you promised. Just do it.
The food is great, get ready to dance if you're going out to party cuz the girls LOVE to dance...doesnt matter if you're not good. Don't be stupid either, the girls over there will hustle you bone dry if you let them. So be respectful but keep your head about you and you'll be fine.
Enjoy its a beautiful place.
Sounds like you have been? What area's have you visited? I agree with all your points - would be keeping a more mild temper with partying - as in not getting blacked out and bringing attention to my group.
Little tip...don't bring cash with you. Pull it out of the ATM once you're there. Reason is if you bring cash then you gotta pay taxes on it.
When you use an ATM NEVER use it alone. Make sure your buddies are around you covering. When you punch the numbers in they usually have a metal keypad. After you punch in your pin rub the entire key pad with your fingers. Why? Cuz guys over there have figured out to get heat readings off the keypad once you're done using it. The hottest keys are the ones you just pressed. So just rub the whole keypad when you're done and make sure you have your guys blocking the view.
Also take out the max which I think is like 300,000 pesos...which is like 150 bucks.
If you have any pesos left over when you're coming back just stash them as souvenirs. Don't bring much pesos back thinking you'll convert them back to dollars.
In comment 13780808
ELI THE GOAT said:
| Sounds like you have been? What area's have you visited? I agree with all your points - would be keeping a more mild temper with partying - as in not getting blacked out and bringing attention to my group.
Yeah in that case you'll be fine. I've been to Medellin, Bogota and then the small towns where my family is from. But yeah it can be a fun place, the women there are gorgeous, the city where you're going is gorgeous. Old colonial type. Food is awesome.
Their pizzas and hamburgers are not like the ones here. So don't expect italian type of pizzas lol That can shock some people when they bite into it.
Beware of the Aguardiente!
Thats right...you can get whiskey over there...dont remember much vodka but they have a vodka looking shot drink called aguardiente. Its basically fire water but it'll get you f---ed up!! lol
Their beers are ok. Their main ones are Aguila and Club Colombiana...I like the latter better.
Who would post once a month about how he was moving to Columbia because he was inheriting some money. Those threads were always funny to read.
Great time - minor occasional herpes flare up and a kid name Jose emailing me since 2011 - but cheap beer.
In comment 13780910
| Great time - minor occasional herpes flare up and a kid name Jose emailing me since 2011 - but cheap beer.
OK, I laughed...
Wait until you get there....the most beautiful women are the ones living in the little towns. They're everywhere and they blow Sofia Vergara out the water.
I was traveling with a very connected person and spent time with a Barranquilla native in Barranquilla.
It is really, really hot there!
Anyway, Barranquilla is the Carnival capital of Colombia. In Colombia, Carnival is all about Barranquilla.
You will be awake night and day, very little sleep.
I've socialized with two former Barranquilla Carnival queens. It's a high honor to be selected, and extremely competitive.
Enjoy yourself. Colombia is an awesome country. The Costenos know how to party!
Be aware - it will be extremely helpful if you speak Spanish. Do not expect everyone to speak English. Those who do will probably do so haltingly. They don't get much practice. If you don't have a Spanish-speaking person with you, good luck. You'll have difficulties in Barranquilla.
Also, watch out for the horse-driven, banana-laden cart sauntering down a main street in the midst of rush hour, going against traffic in the wrong direction!!
I have extremely well connected friends in Barranquilla.
If you get in trouble while you are there, and you can believe me, post here and I will contact them.
They can get you out of any police-related jam.
Shakira is from Barranquilla. She'll be there, almost for sure.