Punta Gallinas to Palomino – Day 51

Fri 23rd Mar

Tom comes to wake us around 6ish as we’re meant to be getting across the river for about 7. We get up to change and pack away when Fritz finds half the contents of her day sack over the floor – the bloody pig has only come back and ransacked her bag! Least it was only the pig and not a thief hey!

A few decide to get breakfast as the hostel guy tells us our driver won’t be across the river yet as he hasn’t called….Sitting around waiting isn’t for a control freak like me thou and once we’re done suggest it’s better to wait for our driver the right side of the river than here so off we go.

Boat runs out of petrol just before the dock and another boat taxi has to pull us in!

Our driver is there waiting for us. He tells us the journey will take 2 to 2.5 hours.

If I thought our previous drivers were a bit wreckless, it’s nothing on this guy! I think he thinks he’s Michael Schumacher!!!

He honks his horn well before the child barriers and gets ready to pass the loot out the window without having to stop!

He gets us to Uribia in 1 hour 45 mins!!! At least there’s not much in the way of on coming traffic in the desert!

We pull up on a bustling street and straight away are loaded into another car to take the 4 of us to Riohacha. It’s so much easier doing these journeys in groups when u don’t have to wait for the driver to fill his car.

Looking forward to getting there and getting some lunch as I skipped breakfast. We make this journey in record time too and he shaves about 30 mins off this journey! The drivers are complete nut jobs here. We actually have no idea of the speed we were going in any of these vehicles thou as all their speedometers are broken!!! Poor Frizti nearly has heart failure!

Out of the car and outside the bus terminal we are accosted by people trying to find out where we’re going and to get us on their bus without even entering the terminal.

Fritzi and Manuel are off to Cartagena and there is a bus leaving now. I know I can get on this one too as I’ve decided to spend a night in Palomino but am desperate for the loo and some food! I grab an empanada and a coke and jump on the Flamingo bus with the rest of the gang. It cost me & Tom 15000 to Palomino and the other 2 35000 to Cartagena which isn’t bad at all for the kms they’ll be covering.

The bus is full, hot and stuffy. Brasilia Express is much more luxurious! Busting for the loo, that’s the first port of call as we pull off and they’re not nice. The window won’t close and we pull up at traffic lights…oh well…! Then I have a problem with my seat – 2 heads pop out of the cupboard behind me to try and help….wtf….are these stowaways from Venezuela or something???

At one point a policeman gets on walking up the aisle checking out all the passengers…he goes to the cupboard, speaks to the 2 ‘stowaways’ but nothing happens so either a backhander job or all is legit!

After about an hour, we get to Palomino and say goodbye to our 2 great travel companions – Fritzi and Manuel (if u read this, message me as I cdnt find u on Facebook)

It’s been a blast travelling with them and we’ve giggled so much. Enjoy San Blast guys

Tom and I walk down Carrera 6 which is a bustling sandy street leading to the beach which is full of bars, hostels and restaurants

Tom is only going to collect his stuff and is then heading on so I bid farewell to him too before finding my hostel for the night – Primaluna.

As it’s now Semana Santa and rooms now expensive, I’ve opted for a dorm bed as it’s only for 1 night and I have just slept in an open air hammock for 2 nights!

It’s nice enough thou, 3 bunks, each covered in a mosquito net (I’ve seen the state of people’s legs having returned from Palomino so am quite worried)

and our own bathroom. I’ve no idea what prices are normally but I pay 40000 for the night (but it does include breakfast).

Stuff dumped on my bed, doused in mozzie spray I venture out. I grab a beer in Tiki Hut as a lot of people I’ve met have stayed here so I wanted to check it out…I cdnt stay here as was full. It is a great venue and definitely worth a look if coming up this way.

I carry on down to the beach. The weather is much cooler here than in Santa Marta as it’s a bit cloudy but that leads to more humidity and it feels quite muggy. The beach is long and vast and a few beach bars stem across the bay.

It’s not great for swimming here as the current is quite strong but is better for surfing and there are a few out there. Not the most beautiful of beaches on this northern coastline but I’m glad I’ve come to check it out.

As I wander around, a lot of the hostels here seem quite nice and have bars and pools.

I walk past a bar called Munchies and it isn’t just the name that gives the type of establishment it is away but also the array of pipes and grinders it sells!!!

Palomino has much more of a hippy vibe and reminds me a lot of San Pedro in Guatemala. Hippies selling all their home made jewellery, vegan eats and yoga etc.

Definitely elephant pant territory – the first I’ve seen since arriving in Colombia!

It’s got a massively cool vibe and I like it here – not sure how much I’ll say it when I see how many bites I have tomorrow thou!

I chill by the pool for a bit

and then head to my bunk as sun falls to hide from the mozzies!

Back in the land of WiFi, I catch up on a few things before heading out for a bite to eat and a beer or 2!

I decide to eat where I’m staying as they’re playing pretty cool music and prices are pretty much the same around town. It’s also a really nice, clean hostel with friendly staff

Lying in my bed, googling a few up coming destinations, bug sprayed up and fully covered, I’m content that nothing can get in then a fricking lizard lands on the net right by my head!!! I absolutely crap myself! I change ends and the little shit runs the same way!!! I’m really not great with nature and is really making me think twice about my trip to the Amazon….

I set up a pitch in the middle of my bunk and put earplugs and eye mask on….can’t hear or see anything and fall asleep!!!

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