Off the Grid in Desierto de la Tatacoa

Desert de la Tatacoa, located about 6 hours South of Bogotá, had been recommended to me by someone I met while traveling in Mexico. It is a place that is often overlooked by tourists and rarely visited by locals. It’s not actually a desert at all but a dry tropical forest that has dried up over centuries. The “desert” is surrounded by beautiful mountains and has been nicknamed the red desert for the unique red earth that makes up the terrain. It is easy to get to Tatacoa, it just takes a little time. To get there from Bogotá or Cali you can either fly into Neiva on a small plane which costs about $135 USD roundtrip from Bogotá, or $209 roundtrip from Cali. You can also get there by bus, which is what I did. I took a bus from Bogotá to Neiva, which I caught at the Terminal de Transporte de Bogotá Station. It’s about a five to six hour bus ride from Bogota, depending on the bus line and the time of day. When you arrive at the Neiva bus station, catch a taxi collectivo (a taxi collectivo is a taxi or small bus of sorts that takes many different people going in the same direction) to Villavieja which takes about an hour, then eventually to Tatacoa which will take you out to the actual “desert” and is another 30 minutes.

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