Do you want adventure? Mystery? Well Dominic Degrazier experiences adventure, mystery, discovery on her trip to South America, Colombia to the lost city of Teyuan. The trail to the lost city was very precious, only one group was allowed per day and the trek lasted more than two days to travel to.
Settling into my hostel in Santa Marta, I learned that we would spend three days of trekking into the mountain range in order to reach the lost city, then another three days to return. There would be a guide, a cook, and seven of us travelers.
Two rivers had to be crossed within the first hour — our shoes and socks were soaked with an oozing mud that would self-crust itself to form new hiking boots. This “new shoe” would appear and disappear repeatedly over the remaining days’ hike as we crossed more moving water and accompanying wet earth. We quickly learned to be little Indiana Jones characters via traversing, swimming, swinging, and rock hopping across obstacles while at times being pelted by cursory rain downpours.
When the trail allowed us an open view to the land, we were consistently exposed to valleys and peaks exploding with unobstructed trees and vegetation. It was as if we were being swallowed up in an untouched dreamland. Along the trail, the group also passed several small hut villages inhabited by the Tayrona descendents -– the Kogi and Assario indigenous people — who have, for the most part, remained unchanged for thousands of years.
Then came the magical moment: realizing that we had reached La Ciudad Perdida while standing in front of mossy, stoned staircase hugged closely by palm trees and ferns. We had jumped, scurried, fallen down, endured and more along the route; it was a bit surreal to actually arrive. As we climbed the reported (although I was very far away from counting my steps at this point) 1,200-plus steps, the exaggerated closeness to the ancient town grew.