Intriguing archeology together with breathtaking sceneries of green Andean mountains and high waterfalls, clean air and the best hammocks in Colombia. San Agustín in the Colombian Andes tops my favourite destinations in Colombia. Hundreds of 3000 years old statues comprise the largest archeological site in South America, a UNESCO world heritage site since 1995.
There are at least 500 statues in and around the archeological park of San Agustín. The biggest statue is seven meters high. Some with remains of painting. Many are anthropomorphic figures, some realistic depictions of humans as well as sacred animals, like the eagle, jaguar and frog. Others masked monster-like creatures or gods.
Very little is known about the pre-Columbian and pre-Incaic civilisations behind the statues in San Agustín. This culture appeared 1000BC and flourished from the 1st to 8th century. But no written language has been found and they disappeared centuries before the arrival of the Europeans.
A horse back ride took us to the sites El Tablón, La Pelota, El Purutal and La Chaquira.
Others not so tender. But this one still has remains of the colourful painting that once covered the statues.
There were so many butterflies in San Agustín. Like this transparent Greta Oto, or Glasswinged butterfly. Their wings almost don’t reflect any light, but let the spectra from infrared to ultraviolet lights travel right through them.
Hostel Alto de los Andaquíes, a hammock paradise with walking distance to the village and to the archeological park.
If you have three days in San Agustín, there’s time to spend the first day in the archeological park, (3 km from San Agustín town and very near hostal Andquíes), and the archeological museum, where smaller statues, jewelry and pottery are exhibited. Spend the second day horse back riding to four stunning archeological sites El Tablón, La Chaquira, La Pelota and El Purutal. The third day (with soar muscles from the ride), take a jeep ride to the more distant archeological sites La Parada, Quinchana, El Jabón, Naranjos and Quebradillas as well as to El Estrecho of the Magdalena River.