Hi and Welcome,
Over breakfast we decided to do a day trip to Usacuri, from Barranquilla.
This would only take about an hour going down highway 90, turning right into Baraona, then continuing through town towards Usiacuri, which was only another 20 minutes or so past Baraona.
It is good to get out of town once in a while, even though the weather report was not looking great, it is still a good feeling viewing different territory.
The plan was to spend a few hours there then go back to Baraona and head over to Villa Zunilda for lunch.
Usiacuri at first Glance
To me it looked an unusual place to establish a town. The hills are not that high, but no sooner are you down one then you start climbing another.
Much of the town is situated in two small valleys either side of a hill upon which the Santo Domingo De Guzman church takes pride of place overlooking the surrounding hilly area.
Maybe it was the time of our arrival but it seemed peaceful. No street vendors, one cafe had Cumbia music at full volume (they don’t do it any other way), but not many people in town at all.
Our few hours in Usiacuri.
I wish I had of done some research on this town before leaving. Like most Colombian towns I expected there to be some walking paths. The obligatory church or three, some street vendors and a a market.
First bit of exploring had to be the church. Looking freshly painted and overlooking everything, we grabbed a some bottled water, before climbing the steps to take in the view
My first observation was the blackening sky over the distant mountains. Looking at it didn’t fill me with much optimism that we would escape a drenching here.
Walking around to the back of the church, and looking towards the back of the business area, it seemed someone had started a craze by painting their roof.
Then the neighbours decided to get in on the act and paint theirs too, only they painted theirs in different colors, some even went to the trouble of painting patterns on theirs.
Upon closer inspection the changes of color on the various roofs were birds, parrots, owls,
That’s the thing about this place, sometimes it is like walking through the pages of a fairy tale.
For me it was nothing much to write home about. There were only a couple of outdoor stalls selling basketry.
This is one of the local industries. The baskets, purses, dreamcatchers, hats, place mats and other woven items are made from the fibres of the Iraca palm.
It is one of the best known and most appreciated plants for extracting fibers for weaving in Colombia.
A little history
The town was a native settlement when the Spanish stumbled upon it in 1533. It would later become the most important indigenous reservation on the North coast of Colombia.
It has two claims to fame: Both of which I knew nothing of before leaving.
- It was the place where one of Colombia’s most famous poets Julio Flórez, spent his last years.
- People used to travel long distances to bathe in the hot springs near the town. These unfortunately, are now mostly dry.
Time to leave.
It was a relaxing time spent at this small town. It seemed to undergoing a transformation, with a couple of new buildings, freshly painted homes (and roofs ?), lots of open paved areas where you find a shady spot to get out of the heat of the day.
I will be back to visit again soon. Now that I have found out more about the the place.
Lunch at Villa Zunilda.
We had been here previously, and found it worthy of another visit. Set on a few acres, it has a swimming pool divided into two sections, one for small children and a deeper section for adults.
A large thatched roofed outdoor dining area, paddle boats you can use to paddle around a lagoon, horse rides as well if the occasion called for it a large indoor restaurant.
The rain had held off while we were in Usiacuri and although Villa Zunilda wasn’t that far away as the crow flies, the weather here was only slightly overcast, although still hot.
Again there were not too many people about. So, after choosing a table, it was off to the change rooms and get into our swimming gear, to enjoying a swim in the pool.
I was tempted to go for the T-Bone again, but settled on a mixed Colombian dish. Which is a bit of everything it seems to me. Yuca, chorizo, chicken and pork. Still it was welcomed after our busy morning.
After a couple of beers I was content to just enjoy a walk around before leaving for home.
‘Til next time
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