Even though we are staying in Colombia for three months, we narrowed down our inland travel. I wanted to hike the El Cocuy National Park (the highest peak in the El Cocuy is 17,550 feet) but I substituted it with ‘Laguna Iguaque’. This lake is in the Iguaque National Sanctuary, about 12,000 feet high. The hike starts at about 8,500 feet. The distance is not long, only about 3.8km but it is steadily up hill. The trail is well marked and maintained. The climate and views change variously on the trail. There are ten station marks on the trail.I almost quit after station number five as my headache was getting worse due to the altitude. It was surprise for me that I thought about quitting; at the same time, I realized the importance of the journey. I previously traveled and did many things. What I did in the past is the past. What it is, it is the journey, HERE and NOW.
Quitting is perfectly okay as long as I do well in my journey. However, I kept going up and counted my steps to 30, 50, and 100 and took a rest and counted it again. A downhill hiker told me that I am almost there and the trail will be flat soon. I made it. On the top, I was cold with even three layers of clothes, a hat, and scarf. I briefly saw the lake when the heavy fog moved aside. Coming down, I enjoyed the views and the sound of nature even more. The wind in the bamboo forest, the sound of exotic birds, and all the different butterflies flying by me brought me a sense of wellbeing.
*** Our Five Day Travel Details (Bogota and Villa de Leyva, November 2015) ***
- Flying from Santa Marta to Bogota (1.5 Hours)
- Take a bus from Bogota to Villa de Leyva (5.5 Hours from the Terminal de Transporte)
- Look around Villa de Leyva (8 hours over two days)
- Bus Ride to/from the Entrance of Santuario Fauna y Floria and Hike to Lake Iguague (One Day)
- Take a bus from Villa de Leyva to/from Tunja (Half Day including Bus Rides)
- Bus Back from Villa de Leyva to Bogota (4.5 Hours)
- Walking Tour in Bogota (1.5 Days)
- Flying back from Bogota to Santa Marta (1.5 Hours)