We woke up at 4:30 am and by 5 am we were on the road out of Cartagena. Even at that time of the morning, it took us almost 45 minutes to get out of the city!
We had mapped out how to exit the city from our previous cab rides around Cartagena, so we managed to exit the jumble of clogged arteries that make up the Cartagena road system without too much trouble...
Our drive today took us through the arid plains south of Cartagena and up into the beautiful lush mountain valleys that surround the City of Medellin. The roads are ok in some spots, not so good in others, but slow going with a lot of truck traffic and many, many towns spilling onto the roadway.
We finished our day at 5:30 pm in Santa Rosa de Osos , about 1.5 hours north of Medellin. We made only one stop for gas and one for lunch and made it about 500 Kms. That's an average of about 40 kilometres per hour! Needless to say, we are both completely gassed!
One last thing - Colombian drivers are crazy. They will pass at any time on the road, even on hairpin curves - especially buses! We saw one accident and nearly another today... Let's just say their risk tolerance is a little different than drivers at home!
Tomorrow we have a short 4 hour drive to the Town of Jardin, in the coffee region, where we will spend New Years Eve. The real Juan Valdes lives nearby in Andes, so we may pop by to say hello...
“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”
- Mark Twain