Pretty Picture Time – Colorful Guatapé in Colombia
Tomorrow I will have muscle pain in my jaws. There’s no doubt about that. Guatapé is undoubtedly one of the most colorful villages in Colombia. It’s like a painter has thrown his color palette all across the village. I walked through the city with a big smile on my face, all the time. Because let’s face it, who wouldn’t be happy in this place? If I ever make a career switch into politics, I will plead for more colorful buildings in the Netherlands. What I really liked in Guatapé were the decorations on the houses. Moreover, daily life goes in the happy village continues. It is for sure a magnet for tourists, but I didn’t had the feeling that the inhabitants exploit this at all.
A few kilometers away from Guatapé you will find La Piedra, or the Stone. This rock has a dominant place in the landscape around Guatapé. From the top of the rock you have a wonderful view over the lagoon. It’s not that easy though, because you will first have to take 740 steps before you reach the viewing platform. The entrance fee is 12,000 pesos, about 3.5 euros (october 2015).
Apparently the villages of Guatapé and El Peñol are already arguing for years who is the ‘owner’ of the rock. After all, a famous stone with nice views attracts a lot of tourists. One day the people of Guatapé decided to paint the name of the village on the stone. The people of El Peñol noticed and stopped this, but you can still see the letters G and I (a half U) on the northern side of the rock.
I want to go to this amazing place!
Guatapé is located in the department of Antioquia, about 80 kilometers from Medellin. You can take a tour to the village and the rock, but it is also very easy to go there by yourself. Regularly buses leave for La Piedra and Guatapé. The journey will take about 1,5 hours and the costs are around 12.000 pesos, around 3,5 euros (oktober 2015). You can stop in Guatapé, strolling through the village, have lunch and then walk to the rock. The walk is more or less 5 kilometers. Even the biggest idiot as regards navigation can’t miss it, because you will see the rock right from the village. If you prefer to save your energy, you can also grab a tuktuk from Guatapé to La piedra.