"Country of El Dorado" - the so-called Spanish conquerors Colombia. The picturesque nature of Colombia, long sea coast, the unique nature of the Amazon, as well as numerous traces of ancient civilizations suggest this country one of the best tourist areas of South America. Due to the extreme social contrasts Colombia is also called "the land of princes and paupers." Coffee business has transformed the once inaccessible Intermountain in the central part of Colombia, in densely populated areas, where the city grew millionaires. Colombia is one of the most expensive countries in the world.
Colombia is located in the north-western part of the South American mainland and is connected to the Central and North America Darienskim isthmus. It is the only South American country, with access to the Atlantic, and (through the Caribbean Sea) and the Pacific Ocean. She belongs to a group of islands in the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. Colombia is bordered by Panama in the north-west, with Venezuela in the north-east and east, and Brazil to the south-east with Peru and Ecuador to the south-west.
By the size of the territory - 1,141,748 square meters. km - Colombia ranks 25th in the world and the fifth largest in Latin America, behind Brazil, Argentina, Mexico and Peru. Together with the sea area of possessions is 2,070,408 square meters. km. In Colombian territory could stay at the same time France, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
In Colombia, a lot of rivers. Almost all of them originate in the Cordilleras. The main river of the country - Magdalena (1550 km), referred to as "the river of life." It crosses the entire country and empties into the Caribbean Sea. The influx of Magdalena, Cauca, the second largest river in Colombia, stretches for 1,100 km.
Capital - Bogota.
The northern part of the country, adjacent to the coast of the Caribbean Sea, occupies a vast plain area between the sea and the northern spurs of the Central and Eastern Cordillera. Showcase of the region considered the vast plains, often swampy and overgrown woodland and ancient volcanic laccolith mountains of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (5794 m), the ascending to heaven like a beacon at the north-east of the Magdalena Department. It is a region of long beaches, luxurious resorts, music "salsa" and quiet fishing villages, as well as the almost imperceptible from the coal and gas deposits. Here are the major ports of the country - Santa Marta, Barranquilla and Cartagena, as well as the resort island of San Andres, Providencia and Santa Catalina.
San Andres and Providencia
A group of islands of San Andres and Providencia lies 750 kilometers north-west of the Caribbean coast of Colombia and only 230 km to the east of Nicaragua. The archipelago consists of about 25 small coral islands, forming two groups. The southern group of islands clustered around the seahorse-shaped island of San Andres, northern (90 km from San Andres) - around the mountainous island of Providencia.
San Andres - one of the best resort areas of the Caribbean, and the natural beauty and charm of the island is largely untouched. Turquoise waters, extensive coral reefs and rich marine life - a paradise for diving enthusiasts. A relaxed atmosphere of island life, friendly people, an adequate (although not cheap) travel service, duty-free trade, and overall security make the archipelago a great place to escape from the bustle of the outside world. The capital of San Andres Town (El Centro) lies in the northern part of the island and is the center of social life - here the set of duty-free shops, hotels, clubs and restaurants. Also interested in the Baptist Church Iglesia Bautista Emmanuel (XVI-XVII centuries.) In the village of La Loma, a beautiful beach in San Andres Town and the legendary cave of La Kyuva de Morgan or Morgans Cave, in which, according to legend pirate Henry Morgan in 1670, buried his treasure (in San Andres was once the base of the British privateer). The best beach area is considered Sprat Bay, bays Sound Bay near St. Louis, Kokoplam Bay and Cove, as well as the island of Johnny Cay. In the waters of the island are wrecks "Blue Diamond" and "Nikaraguense" reef wall Blue Hole and Blue Wall, as well as underwater geyser El Hoyo-Soplador at the southern tip of San Andrés, attracting the attention of divers.
Providencia, or as they call it 6 thousand. Locals - "Old Providence", in contrast to the San Andres hardly touched by tourism boom (but the formation of the structure is very fast). There are almost unchanged to preserve the tradition of the island - the original English and "patois", spoken by people from the African continent, pastoral manners and quiet, measured life. Hotels are more reminiscent of the XVIII century tavern somewhere in Wales, there is almost no bars, and the main celebrations coincide with the canonical day Saints. But the natural environment is more natural, and the conditions for diving are more diverse than in the San Andres (the most popular in this regard Freshuoter Bay Bay). A walk to the top of Kasabaha the biggest "mountain" on the island - El Pico, allow to consider it almost all.
Santa Fe de Bogota
Bogota - the capital of the Republic of Colombia, the administrative center of the Department of Cundinamarca and the largest city in the country. The city lies on the banks of the Rio San Francisco, in the vast plateau basin Sabana de Bogotá (the highest plateau in Colombia - it is the average height of 2600 m), at an altitude of 2650 m above sea level. The city was founded by the Spanish conquistador Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada in 1538 under the name of Santa Fe de Bogota. Prior to the arrival of Europeans civilization flourished Indians "muiska" and "Chibcha", one of the fortresses which - Bakata, and became the basis for a future capital of Colombia. As elsewhere, the new Spanish possessions, the Indians were quickly evicted from such an attractive place, and in 1598 Santa Fe de Bogota became the capital of the Spanish Captaincy General (from 1739 - the viceroyalty) of New Granada. After independence from Spain (1824) the city was renamed to Bogota, and by the end of the XIX century it became a major center of the revolutionary movement as Colombia, and other Latin American countries. Despite its political influence and favorable geographical position, the development of Bogota for a long time suffered from poor transport links with the rest of the country, so by 1940 there remained only 300 thousand. Residents. Only a civil war 1942-1958 biennium. led to an exodus of peasants from the war-torn countryside to the capital. By the end of the XX century, industrialization and mass migration have led to the fact that Bogota has become the fourth largest city in South America and one of the most cosmopolitan capitals of the region.
Today is the quintessence of all Bogota Colombia. It is a city of futuristic architecture, vibrant and diverse cultural and intellectual life of luxury colonial churches and brilliant museums. And at the same time - it is a city of tramps, slums, drug traffickers and perpetual traffic jams. It is this amazing mixture of prosperity and poverty, super cows and pack mules, ultramodern offices and poor neighborhoods makes Bogota one of the most charming and, at the same time, chaotic and aggressive capitals of the world.
Modern Bogota is a complex and intricate network of narrow streets, winding along the hillsides. Over the old blocks towering dozens of churches and other architectural monuments of XVII-XIX centuries, and new areas shine concrete and glass, offering up to heaven tower banks and offices. The central part of Bogota stretches between Avenida Jimenez de Quesada and Calle 7. The main square of the capital is considered to be the Plaza Bolivar (1807-1823 gg.) With the famous statue of the first President of Colombia and Cathedral Cathedral (1572-1610 gg., Rebuilt in the early XIX century, renovated in 1998) to the graves of Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada, a war hero for independence Antonio Nariño and the most famous artist of the colonial era - Gregorio Vázquez de Arce and Kebalos. To the south of the square is the Presidential Palace, where every day at 17.00 a colorful ceremony held guard replacement. On the north side of the square is the building of the Palace of Justice, restored in 1999 after the building was stormed by the rebels in 1985, also in the center and the adjoining city's oldest neighborhood of La Candelaria is the Church of San Francisco (1567 g), Santa Clara (XVII-XVIII centuries., now a museum), the church of La Concepción (XVIII century, now it houses a wonderful repository of art in the style of "Mudejar"), the Church of San Ignacio (XVII-XVIII centuries., one of the most ornate churches in the country), the church of La Tercera (XVIII-XIX cc.), Nuestra Señora del Carmen, La Candelaria and San Diego. Deserved reputation of the city bring colorful buildings Casa de Poesiya Silva (now here is the Museum of poetry), Fundacion-Alzate-Avendano, Palacio de San Carlos, Casa del Marqués de San Jorge, Luis library Angel-Arango, Teatro Colon, Catedral Primada, Capilla del Sagrario, Palacio Arsobispal, Palacio Echeverri and Palacio de Nariño (the residence of the president of the country).
Second largest city in Colombia, capital of the province of Antioquia, and "terra Pais", Medellin was founded in 1616 at the height of 1538 m above sea level. This is the most dangerous city in the world (here in the year 5000 is made about serious crimes - eight times more than in the worst cities in the USA), the city "sikarios" (teenage gangs) and drug cartels, village, oddly enough, more than 3 million very friendly people who, even within Colombia have glory merry and artists. A valley Aburro whose slopes occupy urban neighborhoods of Medellin has a great climate, the average temperature year-round is around the mark of 24 C.
The town itself is very flavor - of the old quarters and the cobbled streets of the center of the Spanish church towering rare, intermittent villas and huts made of red brick. The sights of the city are the Basilica de la Candelaria, Basilica Metropolitana (beginning of XX century, is considered to be the largest brick church in the South America) in the Parque de Bolivar, Pueblito Paisa - a replica of a typical village of the region with numerous shops selling handicrafts, Plaza de Toros la Macarena, Plaza Botero, which exhibited numerous works of Fernando Botero - the world-famous local sculptor, museum Museo de Antioquia with the works of the same Botero, as well as university two stadiums (local football team - the leader of the national championship) and, of course, the famous botanical garden Jardin Botanico Joaquin Antonio Uribe and his equally famous collection of orchids - Orhideorama.
Annual Flower Festival Fier de Las Flores is held in Medellín in late July and early August. This colorful holiday parade opens "caballero" (in some years this number comes to 7,000 riders) parading through the city. The culmination of the festival falls on the Defile de Sileteros when thousands of locals descend from the slopes with flowers in their hands, forming now moving sea of colored spots of national costumes and bouquets. It is also widely known for the Medellin International Poetry Festival, which takes place in mid-June.
Capital of the department of Magdalena and the oldest city in Colombia, Santa Marta was founded by Roger de Bastidas in 1525. Selecting a location for the port is easy to understand - a lovely harbor of Santa Marta lies in the interior of the picturesque mountain peaks that arise from the wall of the city blocks, and the local tribes "Tyrone" in the days of the Aztecs were widely known for his ability to work with gold. Some of their products, and are not sent to the conquistadors to Spain through the new port of Santa Marta, you can see the famous Museo del Oro in Bogota. And from the ancient masters themselves was only Tayrona Heritage Discovery Center and a few relatively isolated communities that inhabit the mountains of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.
For a long time the city served as a haven and a base for British and Dutch pirates, so few people are surprised that this wonderful port is still a haven of smugglers and drug dealers, and his once brilliant beauty dimmed by dust and exhaust fumes. However, this does not mean that it is a simple export port in which only stay travelers, the following inland. Here you can find Villa La Villa de San Pedro Alehandrino (XVII century, 5 km from the city center), which has spent the last years of his life, Simon Bolivar, a small museum of Bolivar (the exposure are works of art donated by the people of countries who fought for the independence of Bolivar - a truly national hero of many countries in the region), the Cathedral of Santa Marta (XVII-XVIII centuries.) building Sitios-Historikos, Centre for heritage Tayrona and dozens of houses in colonial style.
But the destinations are rich in attractions - within 50 miles of Santa Marta National Park you can see the Sierra Nevada del Santa Marta, has the widest range of ekotsenozov - from rainforests to dry Andean plateau; the famous "Lost City of Tayrona" - Ciudad Perdida (50 km south-east of Santa Marta, V in n. e.), and a complex network of paths and steep stone stairs (more than 1350) of the period of the Inca civilization to the south of it, in the valley Buritaka; isolated settlements of Indians "Kogi" - one of the oldest ethnic groups in South America; Tayrona National Park (25 km east of Santa Marta); included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage historic city of Santa Cruz de Mompoks (founded in 1540) with dozens of colorful colonial buildings in the Spanish style (almost all of them are still being used for its intended purpose); coastline with fantastic beaches and many resort areas - Playas Cristal, Playas Grande Neguanhe, Arresifes and El Rodadero, as well as the beautiful bay of the same name and Taganga village, well known for scuba diving and beach holidays.
The center of all tourist activities in the eastern region of Colombia - a small town Leticia, located on the banks of the Amazon, near the border with Brazil and Peru. Leticia was founded by Peruvians in the middle of XIX century, but was ceded to Colombia after the revision of the boundaries in the 30s of the XX century. Despite the once-strained relations with the "neighbors", today Leticia almost merged with the Brazilian port of Tabatinga (4 miles up the river) you do not even require an entry visa.
Leticia itself - a quiet and unremarkable town of all the attractions that mark usually only Isla de Los Mikos ("Monkey Island", there really is home to over a thousand of these restless animals), the zoo and the beautiful main square of the city - Park Santander filled great restaurants, cafes and offices tourism organizations, as well as hundreds of tropical birds, especially strong chirping at dawn and dusk. But what is really worthy of attention because it is the very Amazonia, where the city sent dozens of tour groups every day. Leticia located near the National Park Amakayu (an area of about 20 thousand. Sq km.), Tarapoto lake - the habitat of freshwater pink dolphins, reservations Indian tribes "Tikkun", "Yagua" or "uitoto", and just - Amazonia itself with all its puzzles and rich nature.
Founded in 1533, Cartagena de Indias was one of the first Spanish settlement in the New World and the main port through which flowed the wealth of the continent to the metropolis. One example of this is the Spanish galleon "San Jose", still lying 50 km from the harbor at a depth of 750 m. He carried in the holds of their prey, which is currently estimated at more than $ 3 billion when it was sunk by British ships in 1708 . It is not surprising that the city is a tasty morsel for British corsairs, repeatedly tried to capture it in the XVI century. The most famous raid of Cartagena led the famous Francis Drake, who in 1586 captured the city, burned the cathedral and held hostage more than a hundred days, instead of requiring enormous at the time of redemption. It is not surprising that the Spaniards tried in every way to secure such an important trading port for them, having built around the outer contours of the city a complex system of fortifications, which are now the main attraction of the city (the total length of the fortifications of Cartagena is more than 11 km).
"The most charming city of Colombia," is literally filled with historic sites. Not all of them have been preserved in its original form, but even that left a lot to say about this picturesque town. Interesting walled Centro-Amuralyado ("Old Town") - the heart and center of the history of Cartagena, full of colonial buildings, shady squares, churches and convents, beautiful pedestrian zone near Getsemani ("Outer City"), dominates the city fortress Kastilo- de San Felipe de Barajas (construction began in the 1533-1657 years, but until the end of numerous forts and not completed), picturesque mansion Casa de Marques Valdehoyos at Calle Factoria, Museum de oro and archaeologist at the Plaza Bolivar, the Palace Palacio de Inquisition (1770), the Cathedral of Cartagena (1575-1602 gg.), the oldest church in the city - Iglesia de Santo Domingo (1536), a former prison Las Bóvedas (XVI century, now a shopping arcade), more like a fortress former convent convent de la Popa (XVI century), with its historical Museum and Chapel Virgen de la Candelaria in honor of the patron saint of Cartagena, recreation Bocagrande and El Laguito with a lot of upscale restaurants, hotels, clubs and bars, coast Playas Blanca - one of the best beach areas in Colombia, a lovely old port of Cartagena on the Baja de Las Enimas, as well as entire neighborhoods of the old colonial architecture in the former river port Mompis lying between Cartagena and Santa Marta.
30 km south-west of the island of Cartagena are the Islas del Rosario, famous for the stunning coral reefs, rich marine life, beautiful beaches of white sand and crystal-clear sea, which makes them extremely popular destination for diving.
Barranquilla city, also known as Kurramba La Bella, capital of the department of the Atlantic, is located in north-western Colombia, about 13 km upstream from the mouth of the Magdalena River and 80 km east of Cartagena. Founded in 1620 as a trading post on the banks of the Magdalena, today it is one of the largest industrial centers in the country and one of its major ports (ocean-going ships can not go up the river, so the role of the seaport serves the small town of Puerto Colombia at the mouth of the Magdalena) . The main attractions are the Atlantic University (1941) and Del Norte (1966), a wonderful zoo, Anthropological Museum, Natural History Museum, guarding the relic wet forests and swamps Salamanca Island National Park (an area of 21 000 hectares). However, business card Barranquilla - famous Carnival El Joselito or "Carnival of Barranquilla," notes usually 4 days before Ash Wednesday, and is widely known as one of the biggest carnivals in the world.
One of the most beautiful and well-preserved colonial cities in Colombia, Popayan is the capital of the department of Cauca. It was founded on the slopes of the volcano Purache all the same Sebastian de Belalkasarom in 1537. Located halfway between Bogota and Quito, it soon enough became a major center for the cultivation and processing of sugar cane. The temperate climate has attracted many immigrants here, and the city has grown into an important religious and commercial center with many churches, monasteries, seminaries and successful companies.
Nowadays, you can see the church Iglesia de San Francisco (widely known for its beautiful altar), Iglesia de Santo Domingo church and convent of San Agustin, Iglesia de La Ermita (1546 g - the the old church of the city), Cathedral Cathedral (rebuilt after the earthquake of 1983, when the entire city center was almost completely destroyed, and all restoration works carried out the residents of the city), Iglesia de Carmen, Iglesia de Encarnacion, Iglesia de san Jose, as well as the Chapel de Belém, the walls of which offers a beautiful view of the city and surrounding area. Noteworthy Museum Casa Museo-Mosquera with a collection of samples of colonial art, a collection of religious art in the Museo de Arte Religioso (located in the old Franciscan monastery), Museo Casa Negra (contemporary art), Museum of the poet Guillermo Valencia, Museum natural History, University of Cauca, the building of Morro de Tulkan the statue Belalkasara bridge Humilladero with its brick arches.
The third largest city in Colombia, Cali is in the southwestern part of the chain of the Western Cordillera, at an altitude of 995 meters above sea level. The city was founded by the Spanish adventurer Sebastian de Belalkasarom in 1536, and since then, as they started to develop the production of sugar and coffee, the city has grown rapidly from a small village miners in major industrial and commercial center of the country.
The sights include the Cali church Iglesia de La Merced (XVII century - the oldest church in Cali) on the area Qaeda, Iglesia de San Antonio on a hill near the center of the city, the Plaza de Toros de Kanaberaleho - place of traditional bullfights, the Museum of Colonial art in adjacent to the cathedral monastery, the Archaeological Museum with extensive collection of pre-Columbian period, a small museum of gold Museo del Oro with a collection of gold jewelry culture Kalima, Museum of Modern Art Museo de Arte Moderno-la -Tertullia, Natural History Museum Federico Carlos Lehmann Valencia, Experimental Theatre Cali (TEC), the Museum of sugarcane, numerous halls of salsa ("salsoteki") along the north bank of the river and in the area Huanchito and the zoo.
Near town noteworthy traditional place of pilgrimage - a monument to the Monumento de las Tres Krusas on top of the mountain, one of the most beautiful colonial buildings of the country - the hacienda Casas Gordas on the southern outskirts of Cali, National Park Faralones de Cali and reserve Reserba- Straight Hato-Viejo, numerous old hacienda sugar barons, now used as a small museum, hacienda El Paraiso Piehechinche and 40 km from the city, as well as archaeological sites of pre-Columbian civilizations in the archaeological parks Arkeologogiko de Tierradentro and Parque Arkeologogiko- de San Agustin.
Equatorial and sub-equatorial. Two seasons: the dry (May-September), rainy (September-May). On the coast, the average temperature of +26 to +29 C, in the capital - 13-16 + C.
Time behind Moscow for 8 hours.
Official language - Spanish. In the eastern and mountainous regions of Colombia Spanish is markedly different from the canonical language - it uses a lot of words with Indian, English and Portuguese origin.
English is studied in all schools, but in the everyday life of its use is very limited - in English is well spoken only residents of Cartagena and representatives of business circles. In the Amazon and Orinoco widespread Indian languages, the total amount of which is estimated at around 12 major language groups and 75 languages.
On the islands of the Caribbean is widely used so-called "African-English" or "Jamaican English" language.
Most Colombians speak only Spanish. Even in the capital of foreign languages becomes no more than 10% of the population in the province to explain in English or in another language of the planet is almost impossible.
Colombian pesos, equal to 100 centavos.
Difficulties with the exchange does not normally arise, used around the exchange rate on bank differs slightly. You can pay in dollars and, especially beneficial when buying jewelry. Traveling around the country, it is more convenient to pay with local money.
In the capital and the resort areas you can pay with credit cards the world's major systems (especially in large shops and hotels), in the province that is not possible. Currency can be exchanged at exchange offices, airport, banks.
Colombia - one of the most expensive countries in the world, prices are significantly larger than those of neighboring Peru and Ecuador.
Citizens of Russia and the CIS to visit Colombia visa is required. Tourist visa entitles you to stay in the country for up to three months. Standard term visa is 7 working days.
Colombia - a real ethnic mosaic, culture, folklore, arts and crafts and lifestyle of the population which affected all the nations that make up its population. Mixing traditional Indian tribes with their rich ancient culture, Spanish and African traditions led to the formation of a unique community of people, which today is known as "Colombians".
Here you can find almost all phenotypes, and all the traditions of the world. "Chechakos" (residents of Bogota and surrounding areas) have a reputation for a few cold and arrogant people, fixated on the work and politics. "Lyaneros" - the inhabitants of the north-eastern regions of the Orinoco are considered severe and self-absorbed people, very hard-working and closed, all interests are reduced to the prices of livestock and type of the weather. Residents of the southern departments allegedly obsessed with bullfighting and wildly talkative, and the Indians of the Amazon are rare hermits who can not stand the alien. But all these speculations, of course, have little in common with the present character of the people of Colombia. This courageous and proud people, honoring their sacred history and fervently believe in God, very sociable and cheerful, able not only to express their opinions, but also keenly interested in everything that is happening around.
Here do not like Americans, but very respected and well-Cubans are Russian (though, will first have to prove that you're just Russian, but not "gringo"). Here are a measure of decency relations with its neighbors and a visit Sunday services, and the status of the person is often measured not by the presence of money in his wallet ("easy money" on cocaine and emeralds here sometimes do in a year), and it works for the benefit of other members of the community or country. The majority of Colombians live very wealthy life, considering it his duty to his family and relatives to make money work, not war. There is also quite strong communist ideas and a certain nationalism, which manifests itself usually has quickly bethought himself in disbelief to "gringos", and in a few exaggerated emphasizing the merits of their lifestyle.
And with all that Colombians are amazingly welcoming and friendly people. The owner of a cafe or diner politely welcomed at the entrance to every visitor counter Colombians easily and eagerly greet each person, even a stranger or foreigner, in any locality will be glad to tell you and all of its attractions, asking for a fee in the form of a very shy. Local drivers who are considered reckless drivers, even among far sparkling driving culture of South America, and those easily give way to some venerable matron or leisurely trusyaschey the road wagon with a bundle of reeds. Sedately sitting on benches in the shade "caballero" can instantly jump in and with their unusual physique lively rush to transfer across a flock of children, and the police, especially in the provinces, often itself a tourist attraction - hung with arms and badges in the American manner, they just ooze self-confidence and awareness of their own responsibility for everything that is happening around. Service itself the guardian of order here is hardly easy - every year at the hands of bandits killed several hundred police and newspapers regularly inflate noisy campaign about the corruption of law enforcement, but the fact remains - Colombian police are among the best on the continent.
Colombians are widely known and as big fans of art. In any town, in most provincial village can be found either an art exhibition, or just a collection of reproductions of the local library. And local interest extends not only and not so much for the worldwide masterpieces, but also on the historical works of ancient Indian masters or works of contemporary authors. Accordingly, great desire and to decorate their own lives - local folk costumes are very colorful and decorated the house with panache and elegance.
Hazardous Plants and Animals
In the waters off the coast of the country is found several species of sharks and a variety of poisonous sea creatures. Some types of fish contain a meat poisonous toxins, so it is always recommended to consult with local residents about the safety of a product. When swimming is better to use wetsuits, and to enter the water on unequipped coast shoeing sturdy footwear that protects feet from the needles of marine animals and the sharp edges of coral debris. Also note that the ocean waters, especially on the Pacific coast, is quite restless - here are strong enough and for a lot of turbulence zones. So choose a place for bathing should be cautious. Also quite strong tidal currents. At low tide formed a very wide flat area, which usually abound in shells, algae and debris. In the Caribbean Sea tidal bands are usually quite narrow (from half a meter to 4.5 m), while on the Pacific coast can reach 10-40 meters.
Traditional cuisine Colombia
In the Colombian cuisine blended into one distinctive mosaic of traditions of pre-Columbian America, European settlers and immigrants from the Asian continent. Like many of its neighbors, is dominated by the ubiquitous beans and maize (corn), rice ("arroz"), potatoes, and a variety of vegetables and spices that are often used in the most unimaginable combinations with meat and seafood.
Of the meat dishes are noteworthy "pandeha-pice" - a huge platter of beef, pork, sausages "chorizo", beans ("friholes"), rice, fried plantains ("Platano"), eggs and avocado; thick soup of poultry meat with potatoes and yucca "Ahikam"; roasted over charcoal pig "lechona" stuffed with rice, corn, peas, and spices; "bandeha-pice" beef, cassava, rice, fried plantains and red beans; steak "sobrebarriga"; fried with onions and tomatoes "uevos-perikos"; empanadas "empanadas-paysas"; spicy sausages "Cabano"; ubiquitous "ceviche" (pickled or stewed meat with vegetables); stuffed with rice and peas Liver sausages "Morcillo" or "relena"; fried pork skin "chicharron"; grilled meat with beans and rice "komidas-Corrientes"; sausages from poultry "chunchulo"; beef stew "carne en polvo"; stewed with onions and tomatoes steak "carne-desmechada"; braised rabbit with coconut "Conejo-gausado con Coconut", as well as soups "mazamorro" (soup with meat, vegetables, flour and beans), chicken "sankocho de galina" and other types of traditional for all Latin countries "sankocho. "In the southern part of the country's popular dishes of roast meat guinea pigs, known here as "Kui" or "smoke", and in Santander, you can try exotic dish "ormugas-pendant" - fried ants special form.
Garnish usually served beans "friholes" in all forms; all kinds of rice, "arroz"; fried plantains special kind of "Platano" or their version of cheese - "aborrahado"; "ahs" - a kind of salad of chili peppers, spices and vinegar; Chips "Papas", including "Pappas-chorreadas" (grilled cheese, tomatoes and herbs), as well as all kinds of fresh salads, and they are here salty or sweet. Also extremely diverse variety of sauces, as well traditional kinds of ketchup, mayonnaise or curry and colorful local condiments like avocado green sauce or sauce of onions and roasted tomatoes "ogao."
The long ocean coast provides Colombian table lots of fish and seafood ("mariskos"), including excellent local lobster.
Habitual Europeans bread here is rare and quite expensive, so it is replaced with a variety of cakes. The most common "AREP" or "tamale" - simple unleavened bread, made even without salt, which are used as the usual bread. They wrapped all sorts of toppings, they baked, fried and smoked and used as cutlery or spoon the sauce. In every region of the country way of preparation "AREP" his, so variations of this simple dish can be found here simply unimaginable number - "AREP-paisa", "AREP de uevo", "AREP-santandereana", "AREP de Choclo "" AREP de yuca "," AREP de anise "," bunuelos "pan de bono", "almohabana", "pan de CESO", "arepas-fritas de keso- on-chicharron "(with cheese)," AREP-henesanenses "and dozens of others.
For dessert served cooked in coconut milk rice 'arroz con coco "," dulce de leche, "" manhar-blanco "(vanilla milk), a sweet dish made from milk, sugar, eggs, cinnamon" Arequipa "" natilya "(sweet custard)," bunuelos "(cheese balls, fried in vegetable oil)," ohuelas "(fried dough strips of fruit) cake" Maria Luisa "pie yucca" panderos "cheesecake" pandeyuka "(a kind of" AREP ")," panel "(brown sugar), cheese cake with Yuka" enyukado "," bokadilo "(paste of guava and other fruit), flan" el Carmel ", roasted with sugar, vanilla and cinnamon bananas "tentason" and other sweets.
In Colombia cultivated many varieties of fruits and vegetables, most of them have not only a Russian name, but also English. Along with well-known mango, pineapple guava, pineapple, orange and papaya, you can try such exotica as "zapote", "Lulo", "kuruba", "mamonkilo", "uchuva", "Mami", "Guam", woody tomato, "Borochov", "Aras" (in the Amazon), "pomarossa", "chontaduro" (eaten with salt), "guayyabamanzana" (a cross between an apple and guava) or "pitahaya". Of these same fruits here doing a variety of refreshments, including a very original - "gaseosa" (all soft drinks), "chichas" (a mixture of fruit juice with ice), "Sodas" (lemonade), "Malta", "Colombiana "(cream soda) and others. The most popular soft drink of Colombia, especially the Caribbean coast of the country, cola. It bears little resemblance to the well-known Coca-Cola because it is made from natural ingredients.
In large quantities are consumed coffee, usually completing their meal. Despite the fact that Colombia is one of the largest exporters of coffee in most local institutions can be found only mediocre coffee "tinto", only in specialty coffee shops you can find the best varieties of this drink. Colombians also consume a huge amount of traditional Latin American tea "mate" and other herbal drinks, referred to herein as "aromatikas." Good remedy for altitude sickness is considered normal hot water with brown sugar and lime juice "Aqua de-panel" (sometimes it added an infusion of coca leaves, which has no relation to drugs).
Colombian wine is very mediocre, but almost universally available imported drinks, including first-class Chilean and Argentinean wines. Of alcoholic beverages noteworthy rum (here called "Ron"), "aguardiente" - the local equivalent of bread vodka (sometimes very strong), as well as traditional Indian "chicha" made from sugar cane. Decent Colombian beers, which are brewed many varieties (the best are Dorado, Club and Aguila), foamy drink "champus" cereal, pineapple, Lulo and other special components, as well as "kanelazo" (strong drink, which is a "akua- de-panel ", mixed with cinnamon," aguardiente "and sugar).
A typical day starts with a Colombian breakfast, main dish which is traditionally considered "uevos-perikos" (scrambled eggs - eggs with onions and tomatoes), accompanied by corn tortillas with various fillings. Dinner ("almuerso" or "komida-korente") typically accounts for the period from 12.30 to 14.30 and consists of three courses: soup, main dish and dessert. Sometimes there is even a light snack after lunch ("onses") or lunch ("Medias-nueves"). Dine Colombians usually from 19.00 to 21.00, and dinner much "lighter" lunch, although the presence of meat on the table is a must.
Additional charges Colombia
Airport tax ($ 19 will be charged only in the currency in cash) is taken only with passengers whose presence in Colombia longer than 2 months. Exempted from payment of duty transit passengers continuing journey on the same day and do not leave the international zone of the airport.
All international flights purchased in Colombia are taxed at a rate of 15% (one-way tickets) or 7.5% (both ways).
Political system Colombia
Since 1991, the country has a constitution that declared Colombia legal and social state, organized in the form of a unitary, decentralized, participatory and pluralistic republic.
"The country is beautiful girls" - and even the so-called Columbia, the population of which about 75% are mulattos.
Prohibits the importation of unpreserved food, weapons and ammunition. Banned the import and export without special permission from subjects and objects of historical, artistic or archaeological value. The export of products made of wool and leather, jewelry, local souvenirs, you will need to present a receipt the store where they were purchased these products.
When exporting jewelry (Colombia - one of the largest exporters of emeralds) requires the presence of the receipt of purchase and export of the brand. Import and export of local and foreign currency is unlimited.
Medical aid Colombia
Medical facilities outside major cities are extremely poor and few in number. Good medical care is available only in Bogota, Cartagena, Cali, Medellin, and in some other major cities. In the province of the whole range of medical services provide small clinic, experiencing a significant shortage of qualified staff and supplies. In severe cases, patients are being sent for treatment in the capital and other major cities. Medical insurance international standard, providing evacuation by air if necessary, it is strongly recommended.
For all foreigners arriving from endemic areas of yellow fever vaccination is required against this disease. Especially these measures are recommended for those tourists who intend to visit the middle Magdalena Valley, the eastern and western foothills of the Cordillera and the Sierra Nevada, the border with Ecuador and Venezuela areas, as well as the Orinoco and Amazon. All travelers visiting these areas should be in possession of a certificate of vaccination against yellow fever, otherwise - Colombian immigration authorities may refuse permission to travel. Exempt from vaccination only children under the age of 1 year and transit passengers not leaving the airport grounds.
For all tourists traveling outside the country's major cities, it is recommended immunization against cholera, hepatitis A, B and D, rabies, tetanus, typhoid, American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease), mucocutaneous leishmaniasis, tetanus and measles.
The risk of contracting malaria (P. falciparum - 42% and P. vivax - 58%), there is year-round in all areas, located at an altitude of less than 800 m below sea level. The highest risk of contracting the disease in the Amazon provinces of Choco, Cordoba, Guayniya, Guaviare, Putumayo and Vichada. Resistant to chloroquine form P.falciparum common in Uraba-Bajo, Cauca, Pacifico and Amazonia (recommended drugs sulfadoxine-pirimetaminovoy group). It is recommended to carry insect repellent and to lodge in hotels whose rooms are equipped with mosquito nets necessarily ("Toldo" or "moskitero").
Direct flights from Russia to Colombia is not. There is air service via third countries: Flights from Moscow to Paris Bogota (Aeroflot-Avianca), Moscow-Frankfurt-Bogota, Moscow, London, Bogota, Moscow Lima Bogota, Moscow, Mexico City, Bogota, Moscow, Havana, Bogota, Moscow-Miami-Bogota.
Potable water Colombia
All tap water is chlorinated in the country, but is not recommended for use. For drinking, brushing teeth or creating ice is recommended to use only boiled or bottled water (especially in the first week of stay in the country). Milk and dairy products are often pasteurized and dangerous to use without prior heat treatment.
Voltage - 120 volts.
Colombians - heavy smokers. Almost everywhere you can find active smoking locals, which creates some problems for the rest of the population. Therefore, in a number of institutions are allocated non-smoking areas, designated special signs.
Also it is not recommended to smoke in the presence of women and children, although many of the local ladies are actively consume tobacco potion Colombians are very jealous of the purity of the air around their "beautiful halves."
Tipping in bars and restaurants are typically 10-15% depending on the level and location of the institution.
In most hotels, additional payments are often already included in the bill. Porters, guides, maids and hairdressers expect a tip of $ 0.5-1 or 500 pesos. Taxi drivers do not usually expect a tip, but it is recommended to keep them up to 10% of the cost of the trip - it greatly reduces the risk of being wrong place at the wrong time.
Stringent standards for clothing is not here - in most localities residents dress up very democratic, preferring simple and comfortable clothes. In Indian villages has a strong tradition of local forms of dress, which is not surprising - local ponchos and knitted hats are ideal for changeable weather highlands. However, for special occasions the picture is quite different - to a church service or meeting an important guest Colombian will put all the best, and expect the same from the guests.
Helpful information Colombia
United Rescue - 119 or 112
Police - 156
Fire service - 119
Ambulance - 132