I recently visited Medellín for two weeks to meet with my new team at Ride. I had an amazing time, with great people in a lovely place.
When I first told family & friends about the trip, they were worried about me traveling to Colombia due to some of it's more well known history. I must admit, I was a little nervous myself.
However, El Poblado is one of the nicest city centers that I have visited with many things that modern European and American cities don't have including walkable streets, common acceptance of credit cards with chip & pin, and super friendly people!
Weather & Altitude
The first thing that struck me when I got off the plane at MDE was the thinness of the air. The second was the heat (it was between 22 and 35 degrees celsius every day).
It's really hard to explain how altitude sickness feels but it's similar to constantly exercising - with your body always fighting to get enough oxygen and being dehydrated a lot. I felt awful for the first ~9 days, but after that, I started feeling a lot more like myself.
- El Metrocable: A trip that takes you from the centre of Medellín all the way over the residential parts of the city and to the top of the surrounding mountain. This is where we found a market with local artisans and a man who was very insistent that Cate could speak Spanish.
- Pergamino Café: A cafe in the centre of Medellín with great espresso and an incredibly varied clientele. I met a couple from Bristol who were traveling South America and making a movie, as well as a few other traveling developers. The wifi was also significantly faster than my hotel.
- Coconut Lemonade: My new favourite drink. Somewhat specific to Colombia and hard to explain as anything other than magic in a glass.
Mi español es muy malo. Duolingo is slowly saving me, but I managed to get by in cabs/restaurants/shops.
Medellín was a wonderful city and I'm really sad to have left, but I'm really excited to return soon. It is a magical fiery maze on the side of a mountain which puts it in the top 5 of my favourite cities in the world. I've also learnt that staying in AirBnB's is much nicer than hotels for more than a few days - living without easy access to a washing machine and (~0.7mbps) hotel wifi is hard.