27/02/2015 Sometimes you come along a place you had no idea it even existed and then find yourself at that very place the next day. This happened to me in the case of Palomino, a small cozy settlement not too far from Santa Marta in Colombia on the way to Riohacha. It is famous for tubing down the river Palomino and a great place to just relax and enjoy the calming effects of the ocean.
Once again I hopped into a bus from Santa Marta towards Tayrona National Park, but this time I would stay in the bus for a bit longer and get off at Palomino instead. I spotted a familiar face and strangely enough, it was Tristan – the guy we picked up with the Jeep on the way to Minca! He’s really nice, so I was glad to see him again and of course we joined forces. The ride took two hours in total and we started to walk through the sandy streets to find a place to sleep. One of the first places along the road was really rude, pushing us to sign in while I was still checking if they even had a working WiFi. Ending up in another, much nicer, place for 20.000 the night, I could finally start enjoying the relaxed atmosphere of the town.
I had no plans of doing the tubing myself, it just seemed to be much more enjoyable in a bigger group and Tristan was not so keen on it either. So instead I was walking to the point about 20 minutes away along the beach to see the groups coming in with the tubes. The beach there was really nice and because of it’s length, it actually feels like you are alone there. It is not a major tourist spot yet, so actually there are not too many people around and having a beach of that size certainly allows you to find a spot just for yourself.
I could see people walking towards me way in the distance, having their tubes on their back. It made up for a nice photo motive while the sun was slowly setting in the background. Arriving at the river Palomino, I could still see groups coming in with beers in their hand while the sun eventually went down, turning the place into a beautiful display of sunset reflections on the river. Walking to that spot just to see the sunset was already amazing, although I would have done the tubing as well in a bigger group.
Once again, I could negotiate the price for the bus ride and paid only 6000 to return to Santa Marta. Arriving there at 6PM, I made it to the water front just in time for another nice sunset. I had no CouchSurfer to host me so far and looked out for a place with WiFi. Sadly no one new came up to host me, so I decided to look for a cheap hotel instead. Meeting up with some CS for some dancing and drinks, I was told that the area of my hotel was a really bad one and the guys tried to convince me to go somewhere else. I already put my stuff in the room though and was too lazy to get it now.
After a great night out with some interesting Break dancing artists in one bar and then another awesome roof top party in a hostel, I made it back to my hotel at 3AM, wondering if something would happen. The only thing that happened were some homeless people asking for drugs and some prostitutes offering their service – nothing serious and nothing I could just thankfully decline 🙂 The only thing that was a bit worrying was the fact that I had no key for the hotel and I was forced to ring the bell in the middle of the night. After 15 minutes of waiting, the not-so-amused owner finally opened the door and I could retreat into my smelly, hot (but very cheap) single room without any drinking water left and totally thirsty, looking forward to get out of this mess as soon as I can in the morning 🙂
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