The Lost City Colombia

The Lost City in Colombia was found back in 1972 by a group of local treasure hunters looking for gold. They certainly did find a hidden gem and now you can hike for 5 days on an organised trek to the ruins.

Where to begin?!?!

Santa Marta is the nearest town to the Lost City and so all tour operators are located here. In fact, any hostel in Santa Marta will be able to point you in the direction of a tour guide that specialise in these fantastic tours to the lost city.

Wilson was our guide and he has been walking these tours for over 15 years. He was friendly, informative and you could just tell he loves the area. His English was great too so there were no problems there.

I got a great understanding of the history of the city and learnt a lot about the flora and fauna of the forest.

Essentials equipment:

  • A water purifier
  • Good shoes are a must
  • Black bin liner to put rucksack in (cross rivers a lot)
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Swimming trunks
  • A celebratory drink for your pending arrival 3 days later - You will definitely deserve it!!!!

The tour Itinerary

Day 1

I started this trek as excited as I could possibly be. The tour guide picked us up from the hostel and we set off on the journey to the beginning of the trek.

Jonnie find the first hour really hard!
Jonnie find the first hour really hard!

So we began walking and ...... Reality set in! The first hour of this trek was really hard.

You will basically spend it trekking into the jungle and you are walking up an incredible incline on a chalk path. The saving grace of the entire day was the fact that you don't go too far before stopping at a tiny village for a rest and to get some food.

It was the first time that I felt like I had truly stepped off the beaten track.

Day 2

You will have to get up early so that you can get going before it gets too hot to walk and to avoid the tropical storms that hit at 3pm every day!

Passing through an indigenous village
Passing through an indigenous village

The day begins with a walk along a jungle path that passes through a quiet, indigenous village. It is amazing that people can live in such tranquil, stunning locations! You will see a lot of jungle fauna and animals and you will be exhausted by then end of it.

The trek lasts for around 5 hours before finishing off in a purpose built shacks, called cabañas, with bunk beds and mosquito nets. You will be so thankful for them after all day in the jungle. The shower facilities are basic but after a day like this it is so refreshing!

Las cabañas - day 2 accomodation
Las cabañas - day 2 accomodation

Day 3

Today is the day that you will arrive at La Ciudad Perdida!

It is probably the most tiring day as there are around 10 river crossings that take a lot of energy out of you. But it is worth the effort!

The Lost City Steps
Las cabañas - day 2 accomodation

After several hours trekking and a climb of 1200 steps you will reach the ancient site and you be spending the evening in rustic cabins. so you can throw your bag into your dorm and relax!

The Lost City
The Lost City

Don't be put off by the soldiers guarding the historic ruins. They are just keeping the area safe. All the soldiers are extremely friendly and if you are interested in taking a souvenir they are easily persuaded in parting with a Colombian military cap or a photo with their machine guns.

Photo with a gun at The Lost City
Jonnie posing with a soldiers gun at The Lost City

So day 3 provides the opportunity to get your essential celebratory drink out of its case!

We shared our drinks with the soldiers and had a great time. It surely wasn't something I thought I would do before leaving the UK. My family would have been terrified if they knew I was going to be having a quick drink with Colombian soldiers in the jungle! It was a great and surreal experience.

Day 4

In the morning, you will have a chance to explore the city properly with the tour guide who described beautifully the history of its creation and discovery in 1972. After the city tour you will trek all the way back across all the rivers until you get back to the familiar cabañas.

Day 5

Day 5 is spent retracing steps back to the starting point. It is a really tough day and the pace is quick but you will be able to jump into small pools of fresh water every now and again to cool down.

Rich celebrating with a beer
Rich celebrating with a beer after completing the trek

On arrival to the finishing point, a nice meal in a restaurant will be waiting for you along with your first steps back into civilisation for over 100 hours.