Mototaxi and Mud

Thursday, April 17, 2014
Cartagena, Colombia
One of the things I had planned to do in Cartagena was visit the Volcan de Lodo El Totumo, aka a volcano filled with mud. This is about 50K from Cartagena, and it's a 15m volcano mound.  Legend is that the volcano once spewed fire, but the local priest, seeing that as the work of the devil, poured holy water on it. He succeeded as the fire subsided and the insides turned to mud. It also has therapeutic qualities. Apparently, people around here are big on legends. Or, as I possibly think, some locals decided, hey....let's build a volcano dome filled with mud and get dumb tourists to pay us to bathe in it. Either way, I figure it had to be a fun and interesting experience that you have to do once.  

There is a gal named Kristin from Berlin also staying at the house, and she was interested in going as well . Walter asked his buddy Fernando what he would charge us to go by mototaxi (motorcycle taxi), and we worked out a price. So at around 9:30, we took off. It was a lot of fun and the ride was very pretty, with parts of it being along the ocean. We arrived at the volcano, bought our tickets, and climbed the steps. I had seen pictures of this, so I knew what to kind of expect. Kristin didn't know much about it, and her first reaction to seeing all the people in the mud were, "it kind of looks like a sexual thing." I laughed and said, yup! We had to wait about 10 minutes to climb down, as only so many people can be in the pit at once. A guy held her camera and our bags (which of course, you pay for), and we climbed on down. The mud is warm and has a creamy texture, and you pretty much float in it like you're in space. The only problem is that sometimes you are elbowing people and sometimes people are elbowing you, but it's all good. I got talking to a woman from England and she was like, I can only imagine all the people that have been in this thing . I'm like, let's not think about that. haha. The mud gets everywhere, including on your face.

After enough of floating in the mud, we climbed out and made our way down to the lake where a lady rinsed me off (Kristin refused that part) and dumped buckets of water on my head. Of course, you also pay for that, and it's amazing how these people find you when it's all said and done. The lake was actually very sandy and warm. We got out, collected our bags from our dude, paid up and got back on the motorcycles back to Cartagena. We went at a great time as when we were leaving, the tour buses were starting to ascend. Going there by mototaxi was a great move as far as money, and it was a lot of fun.  

It was definitely a fun, touristy experience that I think you need to do once. I probably wouldn't pay to do it again, but I will say that my skin feels pretty soft today. Last night I did some more strolling in the old city and took some more pics. This morning, it's off to Bogota, and then tomorrow is my flight home. I'm not sure what all I will do today as my homestay is closer to the airport and my money is starting to get low (don't feel like withdrawing more cash). So, it could be a pretty low key day, which actually sounds ok. There isn't much I need to see in Bogota anyway.  

Hasta luego,


Craig Kasemodel

Great pictures as always! Looks like a great trip! Can't wait to chat about the mudbath, was it hot like a hot spring?


Sorry I am just seeing this was cool, and I thought it would be warm. Maybe it warms up in the afternoon?