Palenque – Colombia

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As you may read in our story of Cartagena – Colombia, we met with Belinda – a fruit lady. Talking with her intrigued us to visit San Basilio de Palenque – Colombia village as soon as we left the walled city.

San Basilio de Palenque – Colombia

The first impression of San Basilio de Palenque – Colombia village was it has strong resonances with African culture. It is located quite far from the main road. Most of the houses were made from bamboo and covered by dry mud, and I noticed that most of them didn’t have a front door.

While we were waiting for our lunch, we took a chance to wander around. We only saw dark people and the village was quite dry as we could imagine as in Africa. They were chilling out under the trees or the gazebo to get the breeze – to keep their skin dry from the sweat. It’s so hot and humid in here, indeed.

When we were approaching the main square, we heard ethnic music. Apparently, there was a music rehearsal by a local group. We went inside and watched them closely.

A group of local teenagers was playing Afro-Colombian music with their unique mixture of traditional and contemporary sounds. They played it with the accompaniment of maracas, claves, guacharaca, tumbadora, and bongo-playing in the Palenque percussion’s style, while two vocalists fill in the melody. They called it Sexteto Tabala music. It is one of the most representative musical expressions of the African communities in Colombia. They sang a song for us before we left.

On the way back, we have agreed that the beauty of San Basilio de Palenque – Colombia is the people. Their generosity fastened in our hearts. They are beautiful from the inside.


The next day, we continued our journey to Tuchin – where Colombian hat comes from. There we ended up staying at the Finca, the typical property here we’ve been wanting to stay at – at least once – since we passed dozens of fincas during this trip.

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About Us

Hi! We are Luis, passionate about urban sketching and Anisa, passionate about photography. They met in Bali, where they lived together and travel by bike all over the world. They enjoy sharing the road on wheels or chatting over food. Since they don’t know which is the best place to live, they go about living the world as if it were their home.

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