This little section is designated mostly for females that travel alone, like myself. There are loads of concerns, as always, whether It is safe to travel around Colombia without any company. I completely understand it, as I remember when I’ve had the same thoughts regarding my safety at the beginning of my solo trips. I remember well when I wasn’t sure if I will be fine in Morocco, and if I should travel there on my own, so I felt the doubt before. Somehow at the same time, I felt that It is my responsibility to simply help and share with you my observations, as because I consider myself as an experienced solo traveler by now. Perhaps, other reason may be the fact that I was often relaying on tips of other bloggers. So allow me, please, to prove that with proper attitude you will be just fine there.
My beloved Colombia was never a casual destination, well… if you can call it like that. Though, it is starting to win the title of the backpackers second favorite destination in South America, after Bolivia, the reputation that originate in bloody 90s, still stops some solo females from visiting this truly amazing country. Don`t let the past stand between you and the land full of relax, passionate, dance and music loving people, one of the richest fauna and flora in South America and, if it`s not enough, sandy, crystal clear Caribbean cost line. So girls, maybe boys, the answer is easy, and it is a big fat YES. If you wont go, you will miss a lot, trust me. Loads of backpackers, I have met, completely felt in love with Colombia and stayed way longer that originally planned. Shouldn’t even just this fact directly turn on the green light in your head to cross Colombian border?
I have to admit that, from my observations, Colombia is an extremely dual place. The diversity of the safeness strikes when the sun goes down. Yes, it is very dangerous at night. You should never walk alone in the dark, even Colombians don`t do so. The robberies happen mostly at night and, even that there`s loads of police around, it happens on a daily basis too. I haven’t been robbed, but my friend from hotel told me that he got gunned down and been theft. If this will happened, don’t panic and just give them what they wont. I understand it might be scary, however it is very unlikely that they will do any harm to you. But again, he was walking alone at night from party. Don`t turn yourself to an easy target, so don’t do such things. It is very improbable to happens if you are walking in a big group. For example, when I stayed in Cali, we were going out every night to the clubs or different hostels, for a party, and nothing like that happened, nor I did whiteness it. Bigger group then better. Clubs are usually in the city center, so I would recommend to limit your night life just to that area. Here, I want to mention a Salsa Club in Cali, very cool place! And I learned to dance it in one night…. yeah me. So yes, the bottom line is to always go out at night in a big group and to avoid dangerous places in any city, you are in. Remember that the hotel or hostel always can arrange or recommend a trusted taxi company for you too. Please note, not to carry to many valuables with you, it is safer to leave it at hostel`s locker.
During the day, please do what you like. It is relatively safe and very safe in all touristic areas. The police is on every corner there. Some places are branded as not so safe to wonder alone around. I know, as I was there, nothing happened, but there`s no police around. Why did I go there? Well, I told you in other posts how much I love local street food stands, and it happens that there was loads of them only in a dodgy areas. But guys, I guess it is better to stick to crowded areas. Colombians are extra nice, and if you’re lost, they will always point the directions to you. Never be afraid to talk to them or ask anything.
Well, sorry girls, but you will face it on a daily basis. Especially if you have a light colored eyes. Just ignore it, apart from calling you names, inviting for dinner, asking for number, you shouldn’t come across any unwanted physical contact. That`s my experience, I was just ignoring it!! But please, always fallow the ultimate rules of not accepting any free drinks or food, never go anywhere with someone you don’t know and maybe ask for directions, but don’t let anyone to walk you to the place, you are looking for. But remember that people are wonderful there, don’t make few comments towards you, from local guys, to change your opinion.
SO REMEMBER TO
First: decide to go to Colombia.
Second: don`t walk with many valuables on empty streets and never alone at night!
Third: never accept invitations or any beverage from someone you don’t know.
Fourth: use only recommended taxi companies.
Fifth: Enjoy and love Colombia 🙂