Posted by: robinson2000 | January 28, 2011

Butterfly-Mania in Great Cali

Just arrived back to the hostel after an excellent visit to the local zoo in Cali. The main selling point of the zoo was that you are able to get so close to the animals that it’s actually dangerous! This we had to see. Most of the enclosures were pretty standard zoo type stuff with the usual array of big cats, monkeys and reptiles. Some of the more exotic creatures that you don´t often see were the condor with its 3 meter wingspan, the giant anteater and the largest rodent in the world, the capybara.  The highlight of the zoo was the butterfly enclosure which was more like butterfly heaven and contained literally hundreds of different types fluttering around your face. For butterfly lovers and in particular my Dad, enjoy some of the photo´s in the slide show.

26th-28th January – We left the beautiful town of San Agustin after having spent 5 quite active but relaxing days there. The last couple of evenings had been particularly quiet as the Colombian weekend falls during Sunday and Monday. Most Colombians spend the weekend drinking heavily, starting very early in the morning and burning themselves out by late afternoon so the evenings tend to be very quiet. The bus ride to Cali turned out to be a bit of a mission. The first leg of the journey was spent bouncing around at the back of a bus along the bumpiest road i´d ever travelled across. It felt like we were in a giant cocktail shaker during happy hour except it lasted for nearly 6 hours, but the scenery outside was fantastic. We then changed to a mini-bus in Popyan where we had a tiny amount of space and Rice was left to sit on a toolbox for 3 hours. The journey was particularly eventful for the bolt of lightning that struck the road only a metre to our left and made the most enormous bang! After driving for most of the journey through the storm we reached Cali safely in the early evening. We tried hailing a cab at the bus terminal but none of the drivers were interested in taking us to the hostel that we wanted to stay at. A policeman ended up helping us and we finally got taken to our destination. Later on the hostel owner explained that the taxi drivers only prefer taking passengers for longer trips across the city but we think they just didn´t like gringo´s. 

We spent the following day wandering around Cali´s numerous churches, cathedrals and seeing some of the Colonial buildings in the old part of town. In the evening we headed to an area of restaurants where Cali´s plastic people come to show off their most recent enhancements. We´ve yet to experience the “wild” side of Cali which Colombian´s often boast about, but we are having some Salsa lessons this evening which should be both humiliating and entertaining.

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Responses

  1. The butterflies are beautiful. Looking forward to seeing the salsa photos!!!!

  2. Ben. Loved your butterfly photos – a right little David Attenborough!!!!. I must admit that I couldn’t have done much better myself. Hope you survived the flights to Quito and will hear from you soon. Love Mum and Dad

  3. […] The highlight of Cali was the Zoológico, containing lots of animals, focusing especially on the big cats (a tiger, lions, pumas, an ocelot and the ever-present jaguar). I enjoyed the plethora of animals, kept in good condition and the £3 entrance fee was a bargain, however personal taste dictated that exhibits such as the capybara enclosure, avery and especially the butterfly house weren’t enjoyed as much by me as by some. […]


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