Featured Traveler, Jim from Chicago

Jim is always so much fun to have on our tours, and those who meet him, instantly love him. Having joined us in India, Bhutan, Nepal, the Caribbean, the Mediterranean, and more, it was time to Zoom to Colombia.

Zoom: What made you want to visit Colombia?

Jim: I love the Latin culture and spirit! Additionally, Colombia is still relatively untraveled and exotic and it has amazing coffee.. what more could you ask?

Zoom: What surprised you about the country?

Jim: It is safe!!! The hype about danger is really untrue anymore from my experience. Also the beauty of the landscape was unexpected. There are mountains and Caribbean-like islands.

Zoom: What were your highlights of the trip?

Jim: I loved so much about this trip, but if forced to pick a few things it would be playing Tejo, the national games which involves beer, throwing things, and gunpowder. Also the old city of Cartagena is second to none when it comes to quaint, colonial, walkable cities.

Zoom: Did you experience much of a gay scene while there?

Jim: Gay people are very much accepted in Colombia so the scene is very integrated. One night we went to Theatron, which is a mixed (but predominantly gay) club in Bogota. There were 4000 people there, and it was incredibly fun and welcoming. 

Zoom: How was the food throughout the trip?

Jim: OUTSTANDING. We experienced everything from great local stews and seafood, crispy pig (lechon), ceviches, exotic fruits right at a fruit stand, to gourmet degustations which were on par with the best of Chicago restaurants and only half the cost. 

Zoom: If someone really likes fine hotels, would this be a good destination? 

Jim: Every hotel was unique and and interesting. The service and standards were high.

Zoom: How was the shopping?

Jim: I was very surprised by the selection. There were interesting local products at the markets in Bogota and trendy clothes and leather goods in the amazing array of shops in Cartagena.  The prices were really favorable. 

Zoom: Any tips for those wishing to visit Colombia?

Jim: Do it soon, before people find out how cool it is! It’s definitely a place you want to use a group tour like Zoom on your first visit because it’s still developing and the guides make all the difference in terms of ease. Plan to spend some extra time in Cartagena once the tour is done. So many restaurants, shops and islands to explore.

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