Last weekend Kelsi and I took advantage of a Friday off from school to do some traveling to the coffee region. This has definitely become one of my favorite regions in Colombia because of the rolling patchwork hillsides, cooler weather and small town mentality.
We left from the Cali bus terminal on Friday morning and headed to Pereira, a city about four hours from Cali by bus. The road is mostly straight, so we actually got the chance to sleep and read a bit on the bus without feeling sick. From there we continued on the bus to the small town of Santa Rosa where some guy associated with the hot springs in San Vicente picked us up and drove us about another hour up into the mountains.
Upon arriving at the Termales de San Vicente we immediately noticed the drastic temperature difference from Cali and put on our long pants and fleeces! We spent the night in a two person room in one of the many cabins at San Vicente, ate our meals at the on-site restaurant and spent a lot of time in the hot springs! On Saturday we also took advantage of some of the spa activities at San Vicente. They offer a variety of things, like massages, fruit therapy, oats & honey therapy, sand peeling, mud therapy, etc. We opted for the sand peeling and oats & honey massage.
The sand peeling made me a bit nervous at first to have my whole body (besides the face) covered in sand, but I totally loved it! The sand was really hot because the hot springs ran right underneath where we were laying, so we didn't get cold and our skin felt super soft afterwards.
Oats & honey was also a good experience and made our super soft skin smell like a delicious bowl of oats!
In between our spa sessions we embarked on a hike to a nearby waterfall. We originally waited around a bit for a guide to take us, because the people at the office insisted we needed a guide. However, when it became evident that we were going to be waiting a long time for a guide, I explained to them that I had already done the hike twice, both times with about twenty 8th graders on our annual field trip. Therefore, I was 100% confident in my ability to do the hike with Kelsi. After laughing at my insistence they let us go! We rented some boots to avoid the typically muddy paths, we headed off for the 90 minute round trip hike. The path was just as I remembered it, muddy and adventurous. We finished the hike in great time and spent the rest of the day relaxing.
Sunday morning we headed back early, because we wanted to get home to work on schoolwork and watch the Academy Awards. A fabulous end to a relaxing weekend :)