South America

Escaleras Electricas: things to do in Medellin

...or the giant urban escalators of Medellin A system of outdoor escalators has been built in what was once one of the poorest parts of the city of Medellin.  The escaleras electricas: fun things in Medellin are educational  interesting and functional. In the barrio...

The ‘white coffee’ trade in Colombia

Trekking in the lush mountains ‘somewhere’ in Colombia and looking over the steep hillsides which were jam-packed with stubby glossy-green coffee bushes I asked my local friend about the money that the farmers here would earn from their beans. He told me that the...

Coffee and Tourism in Colombia

What do you know about the coffee industry in Colombia? Do you want to explore a region which is steeped in the little brown beans that so many of us crave each morning? An innovative project has been set up in a small mountainous region of Colombia which enables the...

My final days in Ecuador

The Day of the Dead and Climbing a Volcano Arriving in Quito on 'The Day of the Dead'  Marcel and I saw the other, Catholic side to The Day of the Dead when we managed to wangle our way into the crypt which is underneath the Basilica.  Normally only open on one day a...

Otovalo – well worth another visit or two

I survived my pickpocketing at the border but one hundred dollars lighter and I jumped on a bus to Otovalo.  I had been here before but I wanted to break my journey and this town warranted a better look around. In the end I stayed here for ten days in two different...

The ex-pat life

Living and working abroad and total immersion in the local culture.  Differences in attitude and outlook.  Travelling with attitude and a robbery. When I was working at the hostel at the beach at Santa Marianita in Ecuador I met some lovely guests while I was working...

Going South

Manizales - a city in the heart of  Colombia's 'coffee region' After my time in the steamy heat of Cartagena I jumped on a night bus and I headed south to Medellin. I had a couple of reasons for calling back into Medellin.  I had to collect my replacement bank card...

La Pura Vida; Cartagena the Caribbean Jewel

  OK - let's backtrack in my story. After Emy, Lio and I finally ran out of time cavorting on the Caribbean coast of Colombia and I survived my attempted mugging unscathed, I returned to Cartagena.  Originally I intended to just stay a couple of nights as I had...

The Amazonian Jungle – Part 2

On my second day in the jungle I woke early as the sun streamed in through my mosquito net.  The windows were just open wooden frames and from my bed I could hear strange noises.  Getting up to investigate I was enthralled to see a troop of capuchin monkeys playing in...

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