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    Day 1.038 – The Mud Volcano (UK)

    One of the natural sights/highlights – as opposed to the colonial delights in the centre – on the tourist track here in the Cartagena area is the El Totumo Mud Volcano. Loads of tourbusses go every day, but I’ve become hysterically allergic to these animals these days, so I planned on going by public means yesterday.

    But since Janet hasn’t seen the volcano herself, and since the private chauffeur cum bodyguard, Ernesto is there anyway, and plainly because she’s a lovely person, she suggested we all go together today. No problem with me 🙂

    Apart from a police speed radar tracking us down in the middle of nowhere (we weren’t even going that fast), the drive to the volcano some 50 km northeast of Cartagena is rather uneventful. I would have been furious at the speed ticket but all I ever saw/heard from the front seats was laughter and shoulder-shrugging.

    El Totumo - the strange mud volcano, 50 km NE of Cartagena - Colombia.

    The next few hours at the mud volcano are weird. Very weird. Next to an otherwise flat(ish) meadowy marshland this 15 m mud cone rises from the shoreline of Ciénaga de Totumo (Totumo Swamp). It’s a very exciting sight, and knowing that soon I’ll be swimming in the muddy crater of the volcano makes me excited as a dog in a slaughterhouse.

    The Mud Boy.

    Some different-looking species walking around…

    More mud people...

    El Totumo - the strange mud volcano, 50 km NE of Cartagena - Colombia.

    At the end of the slightly rickety staircase there are hordes of tourists splashing around in the mud. When most of them have gone, it’s our turn to get messy.

    On the top of El Totumo - the strange mud volcano, 50 km NE of Cartagena - Colombia.

    It’s hard to describe how the mud feels like. Temperature is luke warm, but what makes the experience weird is the texture and the gravity-defying nature of the mud. According to the local guys here, the “mud vent” goes an amazing 2.300 metres down below the surface of the Earth, but we’ll never find out as it is physically impossible to push yourself completely under the mud.

    Getting in the gravity-defying El Totumo mud volcano

    You sort of just sit or stand there in the mud, without touching anything below your feet (strange feeling, I tell you) you don’t sink, you can’t walk or swim in the clayey mud soup. All you can is relax – which is not hard, especially when the “official mud guys” start massaging you all over. Blissful.

    Me floating in the gravity-defying El Totumo mud volcano

    It was one of the weirdest experiences being in the mud volcano...

    Ernesto, Janet, and I (aka The Martians) on top of the El Totumo Mud Volcano...

    Ernesto, Janet, and I (aka The Martians) on top of the El Totumo Mud Volcano...

    After the mud show some ladies are waiting down by the water’s edge to give us a good wash down, pants off and all – agates submerged throughout.

    Muddy Me.

    I highly recommend the mud volcano experience to anyone coming this way. We all grab a quick and refreshing beer afterwards, it’s the full-package deal, mind you. The price of all this, I never really figured out as – you guessed it – Janet to care of that part. Being a WorldTraveller these days is both great fun and very easy on the wallet.

    Erosions near the mud volcano...

    Deadline’s coming up at the Danish paper MetroXpress that I’ve been writing travel columns for every fortnight over the last nearly 3 years. My writing motivation is not great tonight, I just feel like relaxing in my room with cable-TV and wifi, but I get cracking and around midnight I finally hit the Gmail send button.

    Lunch in Cartagena with Ernesto and Janet.

    On this day..

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    6 Responses to “Day 1.038 – The Mud Volcano (UK)”

    1. Daniel W. Carstensen Says:

      Fedt!

    2. ulises de jesus ramos Says:

      aahhhh the real good life
      jejeje
      un abrazo grande cubano caleño
      cuidate mucho
      uli

    3. Anonymous Says:

      that looks fun aslo its 2300 metere down estimate but the mud is so think that it holds you up

    4. Julie-Tenerife Says:

      That looks hysterical. I love the new species of mud man you found there.

    5. Nicolai Says:

      It was kind of hysterical, Julie…

    6. Anonymous Says:

      The mud goes down 2300 meters? That’s kind of creepy. If someone did sink somehow, or if they stepped/swam on a watery spot, what would happen? Anyway, that looks really fun, I’ll have to go there sometime.

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