Tag Archives: Photos

Zipaquirá Salt Cathedral

On our way into Bogotá, we stopped in the former salt mines of Zipaquirá, the Disneyland of underground former salt mines. It seems a cathedral was built underground purely to attract tourists. Despite this sense of the whole place being artificial (though it is used for religious ceremonies) I was slightly awestruck at the scale of the underground cathedral.

Photos do not give enough credit to this impressive structure 200 metres underground. The cathedral and surrounding tunnels are memorable by themselves, but what really made the visit was the guide. He was a headcase. To this day, I cannot remember much of what he told us in his broken English, but I do remember his crazy arm-waving and manic movement. He even invited us to lick the walls of the former salt mine, and gave us a demonstration himself. This being Colombia, I’m sure salt wasn’t the only white stuff he’d had that day.

Mainly due to his hyperactivity, we thoroughly enjoyed our tour of the underground. Even if we didn’t learn a huge amount about it. Despite not being very religious myself, if I ever find myself in Colombia for Sunday Mass, I know which church to attend.

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Christmas Cave Jumping

I spent Christmas Day last year jumping into underground caves in the Yucatán peninsula in Mexico. Plus I’ve been back three times since then! This activity is one of the most popular optional excursions we offer on tour. There are over 1,000 of these caves and sinkholes, called ‘cenotes’, in the permeable limestone region of the Yucatán.

Each ‘cenote’ is unique and memorable in their own way. The refraction of the sunlight hitting the water makes for some absolutely stunning photos. I Skyped my family back home after they had finished their Christmas dinner and tried to explain the concept of a ‘cenote’, but it’s hard to describe without photos.

These pictures are from our guide Raúl in the ‘cenotes’ at Cuzama, about an hour from our hotel base in Mérida. Let the pictures tell you everything – this is special.