|cloud filled valleys|
We arrived at Covenas at about 8pm, by which time it was dark. After a bit of an effort to get Cindy through the gate and parked up, we started setting up the tents. It was just as well that our three older ladies decided to upgrade to a room, as there was only just space on the 'grass' for the tents we did put up. Otherwise the camping area was gravel which would have been most uncomfortable.
None of us were impressed with the campsite. The camping area that we were in looked like it was usually the carpark, and the gravel area at the front is clearly the gardens. The only shower is a beach style shower - cold water out in the garden, and the one and only toilet didn't flush at all and had huge cockroaches threatening to land on you. We resolved the toilet issue by demanding they opened up an empty room for us to use the toilet in there, but we were far from happy campers. The food they served us took forever and whilst OK, was definitely overpriced, and their general attitude was poor. They didn't even have any cold beers. Those in the rooms weren't too impressed either.
In the morning, Izzie suggested that if she could confirm rooms could be available, we might want to do a late drive to Cartagena that evening, rather than stay here another night. The agreement was unanimous and enthusiastic. I gather Dragoman won't be using that place again.
|fishermen at Tolu|
|'snorkelling' for turtles|
We were all quite relieved to be back on the boat again. This was definitely one of those places that was just so bad that it was good. It was farcical, and had absolutely nothing to recommend it, but we found it hilarious.
The next stop was the island of Tinitipan, where we waded off the boat and had three hours and lunch on a caribbean beach that we had to ourselves. I was quite happy lying in a hammock under a coconut tree, sipping a coco loco out of a coconut!
On the way back we made a delivery of some tamales (at least we thought it was tamales, but given what we found out later we may have been wrong) to another island. This one was far from idyllic. Every available space was covered with run down huts and houses. It reminded me of that film Waterworld. This was certainly not intended to be a tourist destination.
|very crowded island|
The journey back was done at speed and for those of us at the front was pretty bumpy as we hit the large waves head on and dropped over the crests. For those at the back, especially on the right of the boat, it was very wet. Very, very wet. But at the end, we all got wet anyway, as we had to get off some distance from the shore in water up to our thighs, and wade our way to land. We suspect that our bus driver knew this would happen, as instead of the little coach that we had on the way there, we had a minivan with plastic seats on the way back.
Back at the campsite there was good news. We were striking camp and going to Cartagena.
The next day, we saw a newspaper article that showed that, on the day we were there, there had been a police raid on Tintipan island that had seized 936 kilos of cocaine, worth around $23 million. So maybe they weren't tamales that our guide dropped off after all?