"Tumble in the Jungle: La Ciudad Perdida" Ciudad Perdida by richiecdisc

Ciudad Perdida Travel Guide: 51 reviews and 203 photos

La Ciudad Perdida has not only a rich and lengthy history but a storied recent past as well. Though settlement in the vicinity dates back perhaps a far as the 7th century and the actual structures' construction to between the 11th and 14th, the “Lost City” was just that until the early 1970s when local grave-robbers happened upon the jungle-strewn ruins of the indigenous Tayrona people. The terraced structures that remain incredibly well-preserved even today were mere platforms on which the wooden thatched homes of the Tayrona were built.

after its discovery

Even after its “discovery,” the area was far from settled and remained in a state of turmoil first with grave-robber gangs fighting over the spoils and then with cocaine cartels using the perfect growing conditions and inaccessibility to their best advantage. This was in great conflict with its tourist development and in the early years of this, a few intrepid travelers were taken hostage, thus propelling La Ciudad Perdida to backpacker mythic proportions. In a world where Machu Picchu was now all too easy to visit, this was a more esoteric jewel in the crown for those drawn to tramping on less trodden if dangerous grounds. As with all things to do with Colombia, information about such danger lagged far behind the steady progress away from it. La Ciudad has been host to many organized trekking groups since the millennium and now appears to be as safe a trek as any in South America. Of course, such organization takes from its illusive allure but it still has a few years before it is overrun like similar treks in Peru so enjoy it while it lasts.

must be done with trekking company

You must do the tour with a group and thankfully there is now some competition amongst the ranks after many years of it being monopolized by Colombia's national tourist company, TURCOL. It can be done in as little as five days but the more typical trek is six days and five nights. This can be arranged in Santa Marta or Taganga and definitely cheaper than doing it in Bogota.

  • Last visit to Ciudad Perdida: Feb 2010
  • Intro Updated Nov 29, 2010
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Reviews (25)

Comments (8)

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    Feb 10, 2011 at 3:22 AM

    Wow, so green and lush everywhere - beautiful! Interesting to read about the Kogi people too. I'm sorry about D's nasty fall though - I have a habit of falling over myself (as you know!) so can sympathise!

  • euzkadi's Profile Photo
    Dec 12, 2010 at 9:58 PM

    Wow, i´ve have heard of it, but never seen it. Thanks.

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Nov 30, 2010 at 3:30 PM

    I enjoy your stories and the wonderful adventures you two take. LOL, I really like where I live. Yet, thank you for sharing your photo's so people like me can see beautiful places across the world.

  • DoreenDe's Profile Photo
    Nov 28, 2010 at 7:10 AM

    I'm glad we did it but I DID get some mosquito bites along with that huge black & blue bump that took forever to go away!

  • Nov 24, 2010 at 4:50 PM

    a truly wonderful adventure! your photos have outdone themselves this time, just stunning! i dream of colombia now, i'd love to do this trek, and visit the beaches and colonial towns. so much to offer!

  • mircaskirca's Profile Photo
    Nov 24, 2010 at 1:54 PM

    Very beautiful pictures of jungle scenery and the stone steps look amazing too! I can imagine how refreshing came swimming after the trek. Also interesting to learn about Kogi people that we know so little about. Now I see what all I missed :)

  • Gili_S's Profile Photo
    Nov 24, 2010 at 5:48 AM

    Looks like great adventure. I often notice that mosquito & other horrors are usually way above the reality, better to go and see it for yourself. Don't they have king size double hammocks for couples ;-)

  • Trekki's Profile Photo
    Nov 23, 2010 at 11:14 AM

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOO, what an intro photo!!!!! Marvellous landscape indeed! JUst for that I would love to hike up there. Haha, the other backpackers - big heros with the mouth, but no water sandals... Love the car..

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