Today we decided to stay for one more night. We bought tickets back to Bogota on Viva Colombia airline- which like their version of Spirit or Frontier airlines. We just didn’t want to go for that long winding bus ride again.
We booked the room and the tickets and then got an uber up to the Ecoparque Cerro del Santisimo – it is this huge statue of Jesus waving on a mountain outside of Bucaramanga. The road up was very old and not at all finished – there were huge chunks of concrete and massive potholes throughout the road. There were poor people living alongside the road and it was hard to believe that the city could finance this massive and amazing statue and area around it and leave these people to live like this with no real road service. The road was so narrow that only one car could go at a time for much of it. As it was holy week, there were people who were walking up and down doing a pilgrimage. That is very popular is this predominantly Catholic country. We had to go very very slowly up the mountain and when we got to the top, it turns out that there is only entrance to the park from the other side, so we had the uber driver drop us off and we walked down to the fork and then up to the front of the park. It was a lovely day and we entered the park excited to be here and enjoy ourselves. We tipped the uber driver about $7 for the trip – more than the uber cost – because of the wear and tear on his car – we felt badly about how bad the road was – he was a really nice guy, too – a microbiologist who does research in the area for large firms needing air, water and other things tested.
The eco park was very nicely taken care of. It cost us $22,000 COP to enter the park and everything was maintained and clean. This entrance got us into the area, admission to the grounds and a roundtrip ride on the teleferico to the little area at the bottom in the jungle where there is a creek and the old Cerveceria Clausen grounds, that now house restaurants. It was an extra $.60 to get the lift up to the top of Jesus’ head – so of course we did that!!
It was weird, when we got to his head – there were cell antenas sticking out of his head and the hand he was waving to people! It looked really odd –
We sat outside of the open area café and had a drink while looking down at Bucaramanga and enjoying the day. There were people all around walking and talking and it was so relaxing. In the shade, with a light breeze and a drink we were in heaven! And Jesus was there.
We then took the teleferico down the mountain to the little area – it was a beautiful ride. We were all alone in our car and we were literally in the middle of no-where. There was only jungle all around. It was amazing! The area that we were going to was the first brewery in Colombia. It opened in 1887 and they have preserved it very well.
We had lunch there and then walked back into town. From the Cerveceria to town it was shorter and much better maintained. The evening was not as hot as so the walk was much more pleasant. We were on the other side of town, so quickly discovered that it would take us a very long time to make it to the hotel. It was time for an uber!