Beautiful Bogota

Now that I was reunited with my motorcycle, it was time to move locations to downtown Bogota to explore the city.

It was only a short ride to my new hotel, but it was unreal! For a year now I have been riding in hot and humid conditions. Bogota though was cool and with little humidity. It reminded me of riding back home in British Columbia, Canada. It was like the oppression of the heat and humidity was lifted and I was experiencing freedom again.

Hotel Abitare 56

I chose the Hotel Abitare 56 in Bogota to stay at.


It was inexpensive and in the middle of everything. Well …. sort of. It was in the middle alright. Everything I wanted to see was either north or south of where I was.

But I got a room with a view.


And my motorcycle was secure.


Given that, as soon as I arrived I decided to head north to explore Parque de La 93.

Parque de La 93

As I walked to Parque de La 93 I came across a church I wanted to see as well – Nuestra Señora de Lourdes.



As I kept walking I ran into something very familiar!


Finally I reached the Park. It was a small park in the middle of an affluent embassy district. The park was surrounded by awesome restaurants with patios. And there were TWO Starbucks!



There was obviously something taking place in the park as a huge stage was set up with lots of activity.




Turns out it was an opera performance.


I kept walking until I ran into a scary clown.


Time to head home before dark 🙂


THe next day it was time for a long walk south to Monserrate. This is a mountain, I guess, that overlooks the city. You get up there by a funicular.

I was exhausted after the hour and a half walk. Bogota is quite high at 2,640 metres. It does make a difference. Of course being out of shape doesn’t help ha ha.

But I finally arrived.


Got in line to buy tickets.


Then I was ready to be pulled up the mountain.




At the top there was more stairs to climb and now the elevation was really affecting me. There was even a sign warning people about it. However, the views were pretty spectacular.




Of course lots of people were posing.


And, like everywhere in latin america, there was a church up top.



Across on the way on another mountain was a statue of Jesus.


After getting a coffee I walked back down to the funicular another way. Along the path, were the Stations of the Cross.






Back at the funicular it was time to head back down to explore the historical section of Bogota called La Candelaria.



La Candelaria

Now I was exhausted from the elevation and long walk. I cheated and took a taxi to La Candelaria. The first stop was a walk to La Bolivar Plaza.








The PLaza is surrounded by the Cathedral of Colombia, Courthouse Alfonso Reyes Echandia and Capitolio Nacional.

I kept walking around the old city.


Until I happened upon the Teatro Colón Bogotá. I read about that and how beautiful it was inside.


I booked a tour even though I was warned it would all be in Spanish. This place is really worth while to see. Amazingly beautiful.















Palacio De Nariño

I have always been intrigued by politics. So one of my stops had to be Palacio De Nariño or the Presidential Palace of Colombia.




Walk Back Home

By this time I had enough energy to walk back home 🙂


Once home I looked up where I could have dinner. According to Tripadvisor, the 5th best restaurant in Bogota was just a couple blocks away – La Castana.


They served awesome empanadas and natural lemon juice. A really informal place with couches and live music. Very cool.

Sunday NFL Football

The next day was Sunday. And you know what that means :-). I looked up where to watch the games and it looked like Hooters in Zona T was the place to go. Of course another long walk. But also a good chance to see another part of Bogota.

Like this church.



Not sure what the significance of the dog is ha ha.

Zona T turned out to be another affluent spot in Bogota with all the name brand stores and lots of nice restaurants.





But Hooters? It was a bust. I guess a pun was intended. They had the NFL on their TVs but were also playing really loud music. After a quick bite to eat I looked around for the NFL at other restaurants. But all of them had soccer of F1 on. So I decided to walk back home to watch the games on my computer.





The one thing really evident during my exploring of Bogota was the tagging and graffiti art. To me, the tagging means they have a significant gang problem in Bogota. When I Googled it I see that Bogota has 107 gangs! And people are really concerned about their increased activity. Here is a sample of the tagging I saw.







Graffiti Art

At the same time there is some amazing graffiti art all over Bogota.















And that was my time in Bogota. Next stop, Medellin.

My Route on October 20, 2017

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My Location on October 21 and 22, 2017

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Cancun Conundrum

On arriving back in Mexico I stayed a night in Chetamul and then rode to Cancun to face a conundrum. I was looking forward to Cancun as I have heard so much about it. But my first priority was to get my new Visa credit card after mine had somehow been compromised.

Waiting for my Visa Credit Card

I booked Monday to Friday in the Hotel Margaritas to wait for my new credit card which Visa said they were couriering over. It was suppose to reach me in 2 business days. The one catch was that they said I needed to personally sign for it and that they couldn’t give me a tracking number yet.

Soooooooo, for the next three and a half days I waited and waited and waited in the hotel lobby for my card to arrive.

waiting-for UPS

And spent the evenings in my room, playing Age of Empires and watching Hogan’s Heroes. Love that show.



On day two I finally got a tracking number which helped. It said the package was in Cancun. Later the UPS site said it was undeliverable because the address was wrong. WHAT?! I gave the hotel name twice to the Visa rep I talked to. And read the address to him a couple of times. I got the hotel staff to phone UPS and explain where I was. UPS said it would be delivered the next day.

It didn’t arrive!

By this time I was extremely frustrated. I could feel it welling up inside me. I shot off a couple angry emails to UPS just to vent. They didn’t answer and that made me even more ticked.

By the afternoon of the fourth day it finally arrived. For a moment I was elated. I went to my room and opened the package. The elation came to an abrupt end when I realized Visa had sent me the exact same card I already had! How was this going to solve the problem of my card being compromised?!

I Skyped with Visa and after being passed to three different people they discovered they had made a mistake. I guess those things happen but I was so pissed. I had wasted 4 days in Cancun waiting for this. Visa gave me 5,000 Aeroplan miles to compensate, but this hardly made up for everything. All I could do is phone Visa back when I had another hotel for them to send it to. Cancun was too expensive for me to stay longer.

Searching for Hotels

I had gotten my hotel for a good price from Monday to Friday. But I had wasted those days waiting for my Visa. Everything is expensive in Cancun 🙁 My hotel was going to be double the price over the weekend. At the same time I wanted to see Cancun, especially the famous beaches! So I bit the bullet and booked the weekend at the same hotel.

Cancun Beaches

The hotel had a free shuttle to the beach. I took advantage of it and on Saturday and Sunday I headed for the beach.

When I first saw the white powder beach and the crystal clear turquoise water I got a huge smile on my face. It was truly amazing! I spent most of the day walking up and down the beach in the water.










Cancun Beach Strip

It was hot walking the beach and by the afternoon I could feel myself getting burnt. I headed to the strip to see if I could find a cool place for a drink and use wifi.

The strip is made to party! It is filled with clubs and tourist stores.



This was certainly not the Mexico I had know for the last few months. I settled on going to Hooters as it was one of the few places open. It was only the afternoon so everyone must have been still sleeping.

It was cool inside and had wifi. My server? Well she was from Russia … huuummmm. Hard to tell I was in Mexico.


After my “Big Daddy” beer I saw this sign.


I guess I won’t go back on Sunday ha ha ha.

On Sunday I went to Haagen Daus for ice cream instead. I couldn’t believe it … 136 pesos or about $10 Canadian dollars for 2 scoops of ice cream! Things are very expensive in Cancun! Definitely catering to the reach tourists on vacation. That wasn’t me. This is everyday life for me.

While beach were so nice, the prices weren’t. It was time to leave Cancun.

My Route on April 3, 2017


My Location from April 4 to April 9


Alicia Sornosa at Expo Moto, Mexico City

I made a change in plans when I heard that Alicia Sornosa was going to be speaking at the Expo Moto in Mexico City. One of the advantages of not having a real plan, at least a detailed one, is that I can take advantage of opportunities when they come up. Hearing Alicia Sornosa was one of those opportunities.

Alicia Sornosa

I know most of you will have no idea who Alicia Sornosa is ha ha ha. But in the motorcycle adventuring community she is a rock star! So much so that Expo Moto in Mexico City invited her from Spain to be their keynote speaker.


I have a lot of adventuring motorcycle heroes and she is one of them.

Alicia Sornosa is an adventurous, petite, infectious, attractive woman who has traveled the world on a motorcycle. She is the first Spanish woman to circumnavigate the world on a motorcycle.

The problem for me is that her website, videos etc are all in Spanish. The blog I use google translate to read. I watch her videos just to capture her energy and see where she is at. She is inspiring.

I was hoping that Expo Moto may have a translation system to English when she spoke there. No such luck. So I just sat back and enjoyed being in her presence and taking in the adventuring vibe of her talk. There was a short video of her adventures that played in the background while she talked.



Obviously I have a bit of an infatuation with her ha ha ha. For me though, those bikini clad models on motorcycles don’t do anything for me. What I am attracted to is a real woman, who can ride and does it. There are many women adventure motorcyclist out there now and I think it is great.

I would have loved to have met her at Expo Moto, but since she is a rock star there were throngs of people around her afterward.


I suppose I could have pushed my way in like everyone else, but that isn’t my style. Plus I was a bit intimidated to meet one of my heroes ha ha. I was disappointed afterwards that I hadn’t done that. Perhaps one day we will meet up and I can ask get all the knowledge she has about adventure motorcycling.

Alicia has accomplished lots, and I admire her. She is stronger than I am, but one day perhaps I will approach her accomplishments. This photo taken from her website


Expo Moto

The rest of the Expo Moto was good. There were the usual motorcycles and equipment on display.


I need not riding boots and I looked at a few there.

One thing that was evident at this expo was that sex sells. There were lots of women at the displays dressed in “cat suits.” And presentations seemed to always have a good looking model off to the side.


They even had what they called “moto fashion.” This consisted largely of models in bikinis. lingerie and skimpy outfits sitting on motorcycles. The guys raced to the front to snap pictures. What this had to do with motorcycling I don’t know. I guess it was an attraction and brought attention to products. I thought it was a bit weird. I didn’t see much as guys pushed past my seat and gathered in a frenzy along the stage to take pictures ha ha.


The Rest of My Time in Mexico City

For the remaining 2 days in Mexico City I just relaxed.

One of those days was a Sunday so I spent it watching NFL football at Hooters. The place had TVs everywhere. I met this one guy from Oakland who smelled of marijuana and was going nuts over the Oakland Raider game. He was in Mexico city for the Oakland vs Houston game played in Mexico City the week before. It was actually a fun day of watching football.


My Location for November 26 – 28, 2016


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