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Monday, June 9, 2014

Day 411 Monday June 9, 2014

The adventure is now in Ayampe, Ecuador. Ayampe is about two hours south of Manta on the Pacific coast. I entered Ecuador on Sunday May 1st and Colombia and Ecuador were the simplest borders I have crossed. Leaving Colombia and entering Ecuador took one and a half hours total. No problem. I have been here for four days and I do not know when I will leave. When I do leave I plan to go to Salinas which is a couple of hours further south.

Since my last blog post I have been to Medellin, Arminia, Coli, Popayan, Pasto and Ipiales in Colombia. Colombia was my favorite country of my travels so far. I fell in love with the country and it's people. The country is simply beautiful. The Colombian people are the friendliest, kindest and loveliest people I have encountered.  

This is Lieras Park in El Poblado area of Medellin. While in Medellin I stayed in a room above the Shamrock Irish Pub in El Poblado. El poblado is the most fashionable part of town. There are many expats there and I met many new friends.

The metro in Medellin.

This is central Medellin.

The Museum of Antioquia (Museo de Antioquia) is an art museum in Medellín. It houses a large collection of works by Medellín native Fernando Botero and Pedro Nel Gómez.

 Just another photo op while stopped for lunch.

A new friend who passed me on his bike and flagged me down. Eduard is from Popayan and he wanted me to turn around and return to Popayan and stay at his house for a few days. Unfortunately I had a date in Pasto and had to pass. Eduard placed this decal on the bike and I have told him that I will take a photo of the decal in Terra del Fuego and send it to him.

In Pasto at the cultural museum there.

This lady is the curator at the museum and this picture depicts a scene from her farm outside Pasto where some local men unearthed a trove of artifacts. She contributed them to a another museum. The Colombian homes that I went into were all full of these treasures.

The plaza in Pasto.

The young woman pictured is Salome Solarte. Salome contacted me shortly after I had entered Colombia and offered to be my host and guide of the Pasto area if I would come to Pasto for a visit and I told her that I would.

The garden at Salome's home.

This photo is of Salome and David. They have a two year old daughter and are both lawyers in Pasto. They acted a my hosts while there.

The Gold Museum.

These are photos of Lake Cocha where I spent a day before leaving Pasto.

This was my guide while on the island in Lake Cocha. Maria has elected to study english at her school and we had a wonderful time.

These photos were taken during my visit of Santuario de Las Lajas in Ipiales.

The Shrine of Our Lady of Las Lajas is a Roman Catholic cathedral and basilica church dedicated to the worship and veneration of Our Lady of Las Lajas Ipiales. It is located in southern Colombia and has been a tourism and pilgrimage destination since the eighteenth century. The Spanish Franciscan Juan de Santa Gertrudis (1724–1799) mentions the sanctuary in Book III, Part 2, of his four volume chronicle of his 1756–62 journey in the south portion of the Kingdom of New Granada (titled "Wonders of Nature"). This is possibly the oldest reference to its existence.
The current church was built between January 1, 1916 and August 20, 1949, with donations from local churchgoers. It rises 100 metres (330 ft) high from the bottom of the canyon and is connected to the opposite side of the canyon by a 50 metres (160 ft) tall bridge.

This concludes my Colombian adventure. After leaving the Sanctuary I entered Ecuador and have been here a little over a week. As always more will be revealed... 

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