safety, transport, arrival
Replies: 5 - Last Post: Mar 9, 2012 8:02 PM Last Post By: adioscali
Mar 8, 2012 2:11 PM
safety, transport, arrivalso, apparently im not the only one worried about safety in Colombia. I have shocked many people by telling them that i want to fly into Colombia to start my South American adventure...but I am not convinced that my non traveled family members and friends know what they are talking about. It seems that safety in the country has been increasing over the past couple of years, but the US state department discourages citizens from traveling here, insisting that the country is still unsafe. It is my understanding that the big cities are pretty safe, as long as common sense is exercised. I would love to get away from the big cities though, and was hoping to find out how safe bus travel throughout the country is. I am debating on which city to fly into, but am fairly set on Cartagena (seeing as it is the farthest north, and will be heading down anyways). I feel like it would be a shame to miss what sounds like a vibrant, friendly culture based on fear I am sure is legitimate. I hope to do a fair share of beach relaxing, but also love hiking and camping. I do not want to be surrounded by tourists, but would like to go to semi well traveled places, to ensure my safety...if there are places to volunteer short term, i would love to do that! I guess my questions for you lovely adventurers are as follows...
is bus travel throughout the contry safe?
which city do you think is best to fly into? Cartagena seems cheapest, but am open to others..
what places should I absolutely avoid?
know of any good volunteer sites that i dont have to pay out the ass for?
is boarder crossing into Ecuador safe?
I should also mention that I am a 24 year old white female..and will be traveling with one..possibly two male friends.
I am open to any friendly, informed input on these, or other topics pertaining to travel in Colombia.
Mar 8, 2012 5:33 PM
Mar 8, 2012 6:32 PM
2I've been to Cartagena many times and it's arguably the safest city in Colombia, especially within the walled part of the city where the main tourist area is.
For a first trip, and for someone with your interests, you can't go wrong sticking to the "gringo trail": Cartagena, Santa Marta, Taganga, Parque Tayrona.
Relax, go, you'll have a great time!
Mar 8, 2012 7:01 PM
3It's extremely safe, relatively speaking. Also, the latest US travel warnings have eased up significantly; make sure you're getting up-to-date ones. If people shoot their mouth off about it, use it as an opportunity to explain that crime has gone down and silly stuff like "kidnapping" simply does not affect the millions of tourists who visit every year.
#1 is actually a bit off... there are indeed cities and towns to avoid at all costs, but they are places whose names you'd probably never stumble across so you don't even have to worry about avoiding them. Try to be sure to check out Medellin too; its progressive changes in the last decade put other world cities to shame.
Mar 8, 2012 9:38 PM
You're right, they have no freaking clue what they are talking about. Colombia is perfectly safe for travel if you're not flashing-your-new-rolex-idiot-type-of-traveller.
Enjoy your time there, is one of my best countries in whole continent.
Cartagena is great, but hot like hell, always consider rooms with air-con.
Some Pacific cities are also a bit dodgy
I think if they are not willing to privide you with basic food & shelter they area all scam.
Mar 9, 2012 8:02 PM
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