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Letter from Caroline: Bye-bye Colombia!

Average: 4.3 (15 votes)

This weekend I am returning from Colombia, the country where I have spent the past few months. I was inspired to visit by the many wonderful Colombian people I have met as both students and friends, and I wasn't disappointed! Colombia is a beautiful country full of new sights, smells and tastes. I found this fantastic article which explains why you should visit the country, despite the negative things you may have heard in the press. First read the article, and complete the gaps with the missing words, then visit the website and read the rest of the article. Ciao Colombia! I'm sure I'll see you again soon.

By Caroline Devane


Stereotypes. Whether we want to admit it or not, we all have them. Some have more than others, but everyone prejudges at some point, fairly or not. When you spend your entire life hearing horrible things about a group of people, or a country, or a culture, it's hard not to form an _1_ – regardless of whether you’ve met those people, visited that country, or know anything about the culture in question.

So, when we decided to visit Colombia during our time in South America on our RTW trip, many family _2_ and friends were up in arms. We've all watched the news. We've all read the reports. We know that Colombia is filled with nothing but drug-dealing, machete-wielding, machine-gun-carrying, kidnapping, violent people – right?

While I have to admit that I was _3_ when contemplating a visit to Colombia, I am more than ecstatic that I listened to the people who had actually been there instead of the doom-and-gloom reports of the media. I can't help but chuckle now at the absurdity of thinking that traveling in Colombia was going to be a bad idea.

So, check your _4_ notions at the door and forget everything you've heard about Colombia, because I'm here to break down the biggest barriers that might prevent you from visiting this wonderful, awe-inspiring, beautiful country filled with the most _5_ people I've ever met.

There are bustling metropolises like Bogota and Medellin that have everything large, _6_ cities in other countries have to offer, but without the attitude that usually comes with them. Tinto (sweet, black coffee) vendors are everywhere offering 25¢ cups of coffee. Beautiful, unique tourist attractions like the Gold Museum and Police Museum offer something that most other museums don't – like free admission and personalized tours by Colombian police officers, all with the goal of _7_ their English.

There are stunning beach cities like Cartagena that offer not only beautiful white sand beaches, but also gorgeous _8_ and wonderful food. A short jaunt up the Caribbean coast offers fishing villages like Taganga, where literally everyone we met stayed longer than planned – I'm serious, everyone.

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