We visited the Valle de Cocora here in Salento yesterday. This sanctuary is home to ---here I'll let wikipedia tell you:
The area was designated a protected park by the Colombian government in 1985 in response to the imminent threat of extinction of the Ceroxylon quindiuense, the Quindío wax palm. The palms were brought to the verge of extinction in part owing to their utility in making wax candles and building materials for farmers, but most of all because they were traditionally cut down annually for fronds on Palm Sunday. The park remains to this day pretty much the only place in the world that you can find these immense trees which, while quite rare, are no longer under imminent threat.
This place was soooooooo coooool! The wax palms were just massive and reminded me of how small I am in this beautiful world. Mike and I were talking about this last night with some Irish friends--how there is so much to see in this world, don't get caught up in yourself and your bubble. We talked about how when we were back in our jobs and schools, we had this ego that built up around our life like "I deserve that" or "I'm entitled to that" and sure there are things everyone is entitled to like: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness and clean drinking water.
We all agreed that traveling the world and understanding different cultures breaks down our egos and molds us into better global citizens. Wow such a great conversation. We love meeting new people especially really intelligent people who converse with us for hours!
Our hike up to the Valle was so lush, green and just alive. Everything was SO green--everything. Our Irish friends remarked that it reminded them of home. We hiked up a mountain and over sketchy bridges that took us up into the valley. I read online that it was usually cloudy--sometimes too cloudy to see anything so I was keeping my expectations low.
But when the valley opened up to us we could see the palm trees just fine! And the mist added a mysterious feeling to the giant trees--kinda like in Machu Picchu.
|imitating nature..or trying to haha|
This place was so amazing. It blew my mind that we got to just walk underneath these giants for free! It was a beautiful hike and wow it felt so good to sweat and work after traveling in buses for four days.