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About Santander and the town of San Gil
Colombian Bike Junkies is fortunate to have its main offices in the town of San Gil, a “pueblo” (town) 6 hours northeast of Bogota and 10 hours south of the Caribbean coast. Its lush green mountainous area with an abundance of trails for both hiking and riding bikes is a dream come true for the most demanding thrill seeker. It has quickly become the adventure sports capital of Colombia with activities including class 5 whitewater rafting, paragliding, caving, abseiling, rock climbing (in nearby Mesa de Los Santos), kayaking, hiking, and now thanks to Colombian Bike Junkies, some seriously sick downhill MTB!
Safe and community-oriented, this 40,000 people small town has a bustling feel to it. The historical town plaza is beautiful, surrounded by old buildings and the town’s main cathedral. The plaza is considered the heart of the town, with many locals spending their day under the shade of the large trees. Pull up a bench and watch the world go by while you delight in an ice cream from one of the many local heladarias (ice cream shops).
There are plenty of places to grab a drink and a bite to eat here. The market starts at 5 am and runs until 2 pm, and it´s a great place to find fresh juices and fruit salads and to experience first-hand, the bustle of a Colombian food market in full swing. On weekend nights, you´ll find bars and parties all over town, with plenty of people dancing the night away.
Is nothing short of perfect! 20 to 25 Celsius all year round. It can rain for a couple of hours but normally in the night or afternoon and this just means the green is greener! The raining season is October and November but even at this time there are plenty of dry sunny days. The nights are cool and there is little or no humidity. As we said, prefect! See forecasts and year averages here.
Around San Gil there are a number of day trips and places of interest. Take a trip to the 180 meter waterfalls of Juan Curi and swim in the chilled waters below. Or the natural pools and slides of pescadaritos in Curiti are great places to grab a suntan while listening to the sounds of the natural waters gently rush past.
Barichara is famous in Colombia for being one of its prettiest villages. It is built completely in a colonial style and is a short bus trip from San Gil. White cottages and stone walkways with magnificent views of the mountains make’s this place very special indeed. With great places to stay and even better cuisine this is a place to relax and unwind. There are these and many other places to explore in this area.
See what other sport activities are available in Santander.
Wait for it, the famous and traditional delicacy of this area is Hormigas Culonas, meaning literally “big ass ants”. Roasted and sometimes spiced this delicacy has long been a tradition since the times of the Guane Indians who used to populate this area. You will without doubt get the chance to try this unusual but surprisingly tasty dish. One of the best spots to try the hormigas is ‘Color de Hormiga’, a great restaurant found in Barichara.
But don’t worry if ants are not your thing there are plenty of other great dishes to be found!