Join National Geographic photographer and Colombia expert Christopher P. Baker on a one-of-a-kind photo tour of Colombia… including the spectacular Barranquilla carnival! 

CHRISTOPHER P. BAKER
Renowned travel journalist, National Geographic photographer, and Colombia expert Christopher P. Baker–the Lowell Thomas Award 2008 ‘Travel Journalist of the Year’–authored and photographed the National Geographic Traveler Colombia guidebook and has written self-illustrated articles about Colombia for publications as diverse as BBC, Caribbean  Travel & Life, National Geographic Traveler and Vacations. He spent five months in Colombia on assignment for National Geographic, and has led photo tours for Jim Cline Photo Tours, Lumaria Workhops, National Geographic Expeditions, and Santa Fe Photo Workshops.

“Chris was the perfect trip leader. His knowledge of the country and its history is vast and he enthusiastically wanted to share it with us along with his years of experience as a photographer… He’s talented, interesting, accessible, and fun to travel with. Plus, he really did seem to care about each of us — if we were okay, getting good images, too tired, too hot, etc. I would certainly travel with him again. He certainly kept up the high standards of a Jim Cline Photo Trip.” – Judy B., Colombia 2018

Colombia is trending as a hot new travel destination now that peace prevails and the country has turned its back on past travails. There’s never been a better time to visit this scenically stunning, culturally diverse, and simply fascinating country. And few people know Colombia as well as trip leader Christopher P. Baker, who wrote and photographed the National Geographic Traveler Colombia guidebook.

Chris has designed a sensational itinerary themed to “magic realism”… birthed here by Nobel Prize-winning author Gabriel García Márquez (“Gabo”). 

We’ll begin in Cartagena, the colorful city where Gabo lived and set such novels as Love in the Time of Cholera… and where the boundless photo ops include colorfully-dressed palenqueras and colonial houses adorned with bougainvillea and tropical ice cream pastels, plus the earthy and über-photogenic Bazurto market. We’ll visit Gabo’s birthplace of surreal Aracataca, and the landlocked time-warp city of Mompox… either of which could transport you in your imagination to Gabo’s mythical Mancodo–the setting of One Hundred Years of Solitude. In the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, we’ll visit the autonomous lands of the Arhuaco/Kogi people, as profiled in Christopher’s article for BBC Travel

The spectacular highlight will be three days in the Caribbean city of Barranquilla, which explodes during our visit for the world’s second largest Carnival.

TOUR DATES:
TBD
PRICE:
TBD
ITINERARY (SUBJECT TO CHANGE):

Day 1 – ARRIVE CARTAGENA
Arrive Cartagena. We’ll have a welcome reception and dinner together at one of the city’s best restaurants.
Overnight: HOTEL BOVEDA

Day 2 – CARTAGENA
We’ take a leisurely walking tour of the historic walled city, pointing our cameras at the stunning architecture and vibrant street life. The afternoon is free for exploring at leisure (and/or a siesta) before our private photo shoot with a palenquera–one of the Afro-Colombia fruit-sellers dressed in traditional rainbow-hued costumes.
Overnight: HOTEL BOVEDA

Day 3 – CARTAGENA
This morning we’ll journey outside the walled city to visit the authentically untouristed Bazurto open-air fruit, meat and fish market. Superb photography here! We’ll then make a short walking tour in Getsemani—a rapidly gentrifying historic district with vibrant street life. The afternoon is free for you to enjoy at your leisure. 
Overnight: HOTEL BOVEDA

Day 4 – MOMPOX
Today journey to the bank of the mighty Río Magdalena, where we’ll catch a ferry through the swampy delta. The two-hour voyage offers great birding photography! We spend our afternoon and night in Mompox, once a thriving landlocked river port where time seems to have stopped in the 19th century… offering us sensational photo ops.
Overnight: BIOMA BOUTIQUE HOTEL 

Day 5 – MOMPOX
We’ll spend the day shooting the silversmiths and ironsmiths for which Mompox is renowned… as well as the riverside market… yesteryear architecture… and straight-out-of-a-Márquez-novel streetlife.
Overnight: BIOMA BOUTIQUE HOTEL

Day 6 – ARACATACA & SANTA MARTA
Today journey north to Aracataca, the somnolent little town where Gabriel García Márquez was born and raised. We’ll explore this mini-Macondo in the heart of the steamy banana belt, and afflicted (as was Macondo) by a charming drowsiness. Ground zero is Casa Museo Gabriel García Márquez, plus the Museo Telégrafo, stuffed with dusty period miscellany. We continue to Santa Marta, a lively port city and beach resort.
Overnight: HOTEL BOUTIQUE CASA CAROLINA

Day 7 – SANTA MARTA
Today we’ll escape the lowland heat with an excursion into the snow-capped Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. We’ll visit an organic coffee finca in Minca and try to arrange a private photo shoot with the reclusive and fascinating Arhuaco/Kogi indigenous people.
Overnight: HOTEL BOUTIQUE CASA CAROLINA

Day 8 – BARRANQUILLA
Head west this morning along the Caribbean shore to Barranquilla–a port city of 1.2 million people. It will already be caught up in the colorful revelry of carnival… our raison d’être for visiting.
Overnight: TBD

Day 9 – BARRANQUILLA
Riotous, jovial and kaleidoscopic sums up the Barranquilla carnival, second only to that of Rio de Janeiro in size. Every year, the Carnival begins four days before Ash Wednesday, with the most important event–the “battle of flowers”–on Saturday. King Momo and the Carnival Queen kick things off an announce to everyone that it’s their duty to party wildly. Barranquilla’s finest do not disappoint! Dazzling costumes… Gyrating, near-naked bodies…. Non-stop music… Elaborate floats and parades… And costumed characters from ghouls to Roman  gladiators. Phew! Make sure your batteries are fully charged.
Overnight: TBD

Day 10 – BARRANQUILLA
More riotous fun and superb photography as Carnival climaxes! 
Overnight: TBD

Day 11 – CARTAGENA
This morning we’ll journey west along the Caribbean shore to Cartagena. En route, we’ll stop at Volcán de Lodo El Totumo–a mud volcano where we can float in the warm bubbling mud! This evening, we’ll close with a presentation of everyone’s favorite images, then enjoy a farewell dinner together at Club de Pesca.
Overnight: HOTEL BOVEDA

Day 12: Wednesday
This morning we’ll transfer participants to the airport to connect with their flights home.

 

courtesy Carnival Barranquilla

 

courtesy Carnival Barranquilla

 

courtesy Carnival Barranquilla

 

courtesy Carnival Barranquilla

 

courtesy Carnival Barranquilla