Saturday, February 22, 2014

Ciudad Perdida Trek, Part 1

 Ciudad Perdida (also known as The Lost City) trek was probably one of the top highlights of my trip to Colombia. It was a huge part of why I even decided to go on this trip and one of the best experiences I have had as far as backpacking and trekking go.
Ciudad Perdida was built over 1000 years ago (older than Machu Picchu) by the Tayrona people. It was later discovered by the outside world in the 70s when grave robbers found gold in the area. Since then, it has become an archaeological wonder and sacred place for people to visit today. Today, there are still indigenous people living there, the Koji tribe, trying to preserve what little history they have left. You can tell that there has been a little bit of outsider influence with some of the modern tools they have, however the majority of the old traditions are still very much alive and thriving.
 Back in 2003, tourists were kidnapped (not hurt) while hiking to the Lost City and since then, the Colombian army is present in Ciudad Perdida and you are only permitted to do the trek with a guide.
Photo courtesy of Amber Walker
Shot by Amber Walker
A view of the Sierra Nevada mountains
Having one of many fruit breaks.
Breakfast time - the food was awesome!
Dinner time.
Good morning everyone!
Trying to dry our clothes - yeah that never really happened, it was just too humid.
Cooling off in the river.
Some of the homes were the Koji people still live today.
Shot by Amber Walker
Shot by Amber Walker
Amber and I parted ways with our friends and headed out from Santa Marta to meet up with our guided group. We decided to go with Magic Tour Colombia on our trek to Ciudad Perdida and I'm so glad we did - they were fantastic! If you ever get the chance to do this trek, I highly recommend using Magic Tour  and request Saul Gallego as your guide. He is the best!
Originally we signed up for the 5 day trek but once we met our group and guide, we realized we would be running circles around them and opted to get into the 4 day trek group. If you are in decent shape and know you can hike for 5-7 hours a day with a pack on, I highly recommend the 4 day trek. It is very doable and you have plenty of time to take photo's, swim, as well as have nice breaks along the way. The hardest part about the trek in my opinion was the humidity. At some points it was like you were hiking in a sauna and there were definitely some brutal hills that seemed to never end, but you were always rewarded with gorgeous views, fresh fruit, or cooling off in a swimming hole.  
All in all I would rate this trek on lighter side of moderate.
Side note: A lot of my photo's from the trek are not that great. Humidity really did a number on my camera's. Better than nothing though.
Stick around for Part 2 of this amazing trek.
Until next time,
Happy Trekkin'.