After a 3 hours bus drive from Medellin, through mountains and more mountains and more mountains, we arrived in Jardin in the late afternoon. As it was the 31th of december, we booked a hotel on the central plaza to fully experience the New Years festivities. It was the most happy-colored hotel ever! Incl. typical Colombian decoration with ice bears and fake snow 😉
After installing and chatting/calling with our family and friends in Belgium – they were already celebrating New Year at 6 pm – we did a walk in the town of Jardin to have a first impression of the many plants and flowers, and to see all the new year preparations… Tradition in Colombia is to burn self-made dolls. We ran in to a Trump-doll, accompanied by a Hillary Clinton who was eager to burn him later that night!
After the walk, we decided to get drunk on the balcony of our hotel, watching the central plaza getting crowded. A super friendly Medellin-family, our hotel-neighbors, invited us to celebrate new year’s eve together. So we hurried up to grab some dinner (the cheapest new years dinner ever: 4 euros p.p.) and went back to the balcony for some tequila, traditional prayers, music and dancing with our adoptive family! And at the end of the night…the burning of a little doll on the gas stove 🙂
On the first day of 2017, we made a beautiful walk in the mountains around Jardin, to refresh our body and mind 😉
In the afternoon we took a “chiva” (bus) to Riosucio – to start our second part of the holidays: La Zona Cafetera! It was a beautiful but bumpy road through a natural park and some local villages. A 3 hours trajectory on non-paved muddy roads. Starting in an almost empty chiva, ending with 5 babies, 4 kids, a motorcycle and plenty of bags we picked up on the way.