A positive recommendation for the Plantation House from Elke at El Gato Negro, plus confirmation from Sandra at Casa de Felipe, made this hostel our first choice in Salento. Sandra had made reservations for us while we were in Taganga, so all was well.
Once we scrambled off the bus, local residents took one look at the two of us and inquired, “Plantation House?” We shook our heads yes and they pointed the way. It was only a few blocks from the bus stop and, although it was dark, we found our way easily. We had been there only a few minutes when we recognized familiar faces Sven and Ildi, who had been so helpful when we met them in Medellin. Small world, indeed.
Our room was ready and we were given a tour of the hostel, then offered a beer. We were delighted to see we could get on the internet quite easily. It promised to be a pleasant stay.
Tired, we decided not to walk to a restaurant and immediately other travelers offered us some food. This was an indication of one of the highlights of Plantation House: great networking. Staying at the old, original plantation house, we spent time on the deck chatting with other travelers and catching up on their lists of the best of Colombia and other countries. We took good notes because this was some of the best travel gossip we had heard in Colombia.
The next morning, we took advantage of the hand-drawn map of the town and decided to explore. Breakfast supplies were easy to get at the shop a short distance away. Breakfasting on the veranda gave us an excellent view of birds. Located in the heart of the coffee-growing region of Colombia, Salento looked most promising for a good cup of java. Typically, Colombian coffee growers sell all their best beans and then drink what is left but we hoped for something better in Salento. We were not disappointed. (We will add posts on coffee growing, so stay connected.)
Plantation House also featured hand-made maps of hiking areas as well as excellent verbal directions to wherever we were going. Phil, one of the owners, returned on the second day and proved to be an excellent travel gossip himself. If we accomplished only a quarter of what he suggested, this was going to be an excellent 3-4 days.
Truth to be told, because we enjoyed the setting, Plantation House, the staff, and Salento so much, we ended up staying more than a week. A month would have been better!
We had reserved a private room which, although a big tight, was comfortable and located near the social area. All was clean, bed comfortable, and bedding changed regularly. We chose to get our laundry done there, which yielded quality results, even from mud-soaked apparel. But that is another story…
Colombians had already proven to be welcoming very friendly and those in Salento were even more so. It turned out to be one of our favorite travel spots so expect a lot of blogging!