Thursday, December 29, 2011

Medellin to the Max! (by Juli)

After an hour delay on the ground in Miami and a three hour flight we touched down in Medellin - thanks to the first class upgrade it was much more comfortable, and we got quickly to the front of the immigration control line. From there we grabbed a taxi for the 45 minute ride into Medellin, which was only remarkable for the strange naked dude we saw walking along the road - for a second we wondered if we were back in San Francisco! We got to out hotel around midnight, and decided to crash for the night and take over the city the next day.

On our first real day of vacation, we put on our bulletproof vests and double-checked our pepper spray (Todd was given a can when he graduated from UC Davis) before stepping out of our hotel and into the dangerous world of Medellin. JUST KIDDING! Since we arrived everyone has been very helpful and we feel very safe - much safer than other places we have traveled. I'm sure this will not be a surprise to others that have visited Colombia.

Unfortunately, we couldn't figure out how to do the Pablo Escobar tour, which might be a good thing since it sounds like many feel that the tour glorifies narcoterrorism. Instead we hit the metro (a reliable and clean transportation system in Medellin) and visited various parts of the city. We took the Metrocable (a series of gondolas over some good and bad areas of Medellin) up to see fantastic views of the city and hike in a nature reserve. Todd blended in so well, that people repeatedly asked us for directions while hiking. Hopefully, we understood what they asked because every answer was "si, uno kilometer mas o menos".

After hiking a couple of hours we headed back downhill on the metro to visit the Cemetario San Pedro, which we were told is more garish than any other in South America. Unfortunately, Todd embraces the macabre and felt that this was nothing compared to the Recoleta in Buenos Aires where Eva Peron is buried. We also visited the Plaza Botero, which has numerous statues by Botero, Colombia's most well-known modern artist - you may not know the name but it is likely you will recognize the rotund style of his sculptures:

For nightlife we headed to the Cory Coder-approved area called Parque Lleras, a small park surrounded by restaurants and bars offering 3 for 1 happy hours all day long. Its definitely a people-watching and pub-crawl ready scene, so we hopped from place to place grabbing food and drinks as we went. We went down one side alley and noticed an American import, a gleaming new Hooters restaurant! Needless to say we did not stop there on our pub crawl. We also tried to hit up the fanciest place in town, the rotating restaurant of Tony Roma's, but one couldn't even get past the maitre'd without a reservation - guess we'll have to wait for that until next time!

1 comment:

grace c tullis said...

So fun to read about your adventures.Didn't know Todd likes macabre??? Where did he get that trait??? You both look great! Enjoy!