Part of the fun of riding a motorcycle is the thrill of conquering new terrain. Like pushing yourself all the way to the peak of a fourteener on foot, getting to the top via two wheels is a grueling yet exhilarating feeling and one you’ll remember for a lifetime. The sharp switchbacks over flat-faced cliffs […]
The first time I took off on a two-week adventure ride through Northern Thailand (my first long-distance ride anywhere in the world), I carried two travel guides with me.
Naturally, I lugged around that brick-in-a-backpack, the Lonely Planet, religiously. But my real bible turned out to be tiny enough to slip into a motorcycle jacket pocket.
Get hungry on the approach to a random town in rural Colombia, and wherever you pull in, it won’t be an air-conditioned coffee chain, or anywhere with English speaking staff or Israeli salad on the menu.
When it comes to motorcycle travel, this enigmatic and hugely varied continent has it all. Riding the continent for weeks on end, it’s rare that any two days seem like “more of the same”. This is why South America is quite possibly the cream of the continental crop when it comes to bringing joy and exhilaration to a rider’s heart and wide grin beneath their helmet, day, after day, after day.
Colombia’s history is as rich, surprising, startling and complex as its geography. It’s this history that has led to a blending of people and cultures unique in all of Latin America.
When you look at the country’s tumultuous, often brutal history, it’s almost miraculous that Colombia has survived at all – let alone functioning successfully enough to now be attracting record foreign investment and a growing number of tourists year-on-year.
South America’s reputation as a motorcycle touring paradise is legendary. This single continent encompasses all the ingredients of the motorcycle journey of a lifetime. And we’re not just talking about the roads themselves, as intoxicatingly thrilling and enchanting as they are.
Welcome to Part 2 of our blog series on motorcycle touring in the South America just beyond Colombia’s borders. This time, we’ll be giving you an introduction to riding in Colombia’s other southern neighbour, Peru.
MotoDreamer started out as a motorcycle tour and rental company to help introduce motorcyclists to the beauty of Colombia – and in particular, its off-the-beaten track destinations. We’re talking about the sorts of places where busloads of tourists rarely venture. Not because they’re not worthy of outside attention, but quite often because they’re not so easy to reach by conventional means. But with the right set of wheels, entire parts of the country suddenly is unlocked, making so much more of the country free to be explored.
Just like Colombia, Ecuador’s road map is one of zig-zagging mountain highways and scenic country backroads. Split in half by the Andes Ranges, with the mighty Amazon Rainforest flanking its foothills, Ecuador’s sweeping high altitude highways and rarely-ridden jungle tracks are adventure motorcycle touring heaven.
The Spanish founded Popayan in 1537, one year after Cartagena, establishing it as the capital of southern Colombia before Cali eventually took its place.
Popayan’s historic downtown is a collection of beautifully preserved colonial era buildings. Dozens of striking historic landmarks, some dating back to the 16th century, are clustered around a massive central plaza, the lovely, lively Parque de Caldas.