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My Travels: Rafting Down La Vieja River

Puerto Samaria - Colombia

It's Sunday, a good day for another travel post. This time, rafting and swimming down La Vieja (old lady) river, there in the middle of Colombia's coffee zone. And guys, I have to tell you that this is one of the most amazing outings I've had in my entire life!

Most of the time I blog about DIY projects and home dΓ©cor, but once in a while, I change the beat and instead share a post like this one, about my travels. You can check more travel posts right HERE.

Now, if you don't like these travel posts, it's OK. You can come back next time for more dΓ©cor and DIYs.

My previous travel post was all about arriving at a pretty house in Puerto Samaria. A house where upcycling was taken to the next level.

It was from this pretty house that we boarded our raft. - Below you can watch a video of this wonderful experience.

As you can see, our ride was waiting for us there on the side of the river. A bamboo raft with plastic chairs attached to it, and a couple of shades that shielded us from the sun. 

This isn't a motorized device, the raft rides the river's current, and bamboo poles are used to avoid any collisions with obstacles.

The "Bogaderos" or raft workers, were two guys who piloted the raft all the way down the river. They gave us information as well as fun facts about the ride and the areas we were traveling. They answered our questions and above all, they were SO very funny! 

They were the ones that made this entire experience a remarkable one.
Rafting down La Vieja River - Bogadero

The route: 14 Km -about 8.7 miles done in about 3-4 hours. It was an easy ride with a few gentle rapids.

And there we went!

My daughter, two of my sisters, two nieces, and me.
Claudia Herran

The raft workers guided the raft, one in the front and the other in the back. They each used a long bamboo to steer the raft.

It was all so peaceful! Gorgeous views. 

Below you can see a roaming herd of cattle. Many farmers in the region are finding it hard to grow crops as they require lots of time and resources. Instead, they are turning to raise livestock as cattle are easy to take care of and profitable. 

However cute they may look, they have been eating entire pastures, polluting the environment, and farmers' crop yields have decreased significantly. 


The Bogaderos also let us know when we could go for a SWIM, as there were parts that were too shallow or too rocky. These guys knew it all. 

We all had loads of questions before jumping into this river. My youngest niece asked if any crocodiles were living in the river. One of the Bogaderos told her that not only were crocodiles living in the water but piranhas as well. But do not worry because they all were vegetarian!   πŸ˜‚

In certain parts of the river, they even organized little games. :D When the water became too shallow he instructed us to do the "Cucaracha envenenada" (poisoned cockroach) which meant we floated on our backs with our legs raised to avoid getting scraped by rocks.  
We were all having so much fun!
My sisters had the hardest time getting back onto the raft. It was hilarious! We had to hop back into the raft quickly as the river got dangerous to swim in some places. 


We then got to this point where we had to disembark and go hike up this hill for about 10 minutes until we reached this waterfall. 

We didn't stay too long as the water was cold. 


We got back to the river and traveled/swam a few more kilometers before reaching this spot. And at that point, we were all super hungry and tired.

Up there, we sat to have our lunch: FIAMBRE! πŸ˜‹
With a GREAT view. πŸ˜ 

While looking out into the trees we could hear the growling of what they told us were monkeys. Although we couldn't see them and the sound was blaring.   
Lunch was delicious!
The fiambre consists of chicken, pork, rice, plantain, and egg, all topped with a yummy sauce and served in plantain leaves. Our drink: "Aguapanela" - Sugar cane drink. ;)

They didn't use any plastic materials, as they try to avoid polluting the environment. 

Back on the raft, they served us hot Colombian coffee, to keep our spirits up. 

Those tiny enamel cups were the cutest.


After lunch, these girls were feeling sluggish and didn't even want to get to the water again, too cold!!

Here again, the raft workers turned our sluggish mood into laughter as one of them hit the water with its bamboo pole while exclaiming: "Let me warm it up for you!!" πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ 

Many times he also persuaded us into the water by smacking his pole and warning us about the snakes jumping onto the raft. 

After lunch, I went for a very loooong swim. It felt surreal being there in the middle of it all.

Feeling so little in the middle of all these wonderful mountains and forests. Floating and letting the river take me down the stream.

These pretty girls had a blast!

We still have vivid memories of this outing. An unforgettable experience! ❤️❤️❤️

If you ever visit the coffee zone - Montenegro, Colombia, I totally recommend rafting down the La Vieja river.


Enjoy what you read today?



  1. What fun! That sounds like a wonderful way to spend a day.

    1. Hi Sue, it certainly was a wonderful day. We were here, once again, watching the video with my daughter and all those memories came afloat. ❤️❤️

  2. WOW!! This looks divine! I am saving this post in case I visit beautiful Colombia someday! Thanks for sharing your gorgeous country with us. Viva Colombia! <3

    1. Lilly, it is a wonderful experience! The people so welcoming and warm, the "bogaderos" so funny and helpful, the weather and food delightful and it all happens in the middle of a stunning landscape!😍 Thanks for stopping by!

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