Camino Real a Guane
Barichara is crossed by numerous ancient trails that were used many centuries ago by the Guane indians. Some of these trails were adequated over time and became "Caminos Reales" (Royal roads) during the Spanish colonialization. Walking these roads is a wonderful experience, and one of the best ways to learn about the tropical dry forest ecosystem that characterizes the region. Furthermore, it is a great chance to do some bird watching, and to learn about local plants and animals. If you pay close attention to the road, your will also have the chance to find fossils and stones of paleontological interest.
The old "Camino Real" connecting Barichara and Guane was rebuilt in the 19th century by a German citizen named Geo Von Lenguerque, as part of the commercial route used at that time to transport agricultural products (mainly tobacco) from this area towards the Chicamocha Canyon and eventually reaching the Magdalena river.
Brief hike description: - Start: Tocagua, Barichara - Finish: Guane - Distance: 5.2km - Elevation gain: 230m - Estimated Duration: ca. 1 1/2 - 2hrs
Tocagua is located at 1,330 meters above sea level. From this point on the road comes down along 5.2 kilometers until it reaches Guane at 1,100 meters. In Barichara, the route begins at the "Piedra de Bolivar" monument, just a few steps down from our parking entrance. The first part of the trail comes down very fast until it crosses the paved road. From there on, it continues with gentle ups and downs over a firm stone floor. Hiking down to Guane takes about one and a half to two hours at a normal pace. You don't need to go fast, we suggest you to take your time and to stop once in a while to appreciate the details and to enjoy the beauty of the landscape.
RecommendationsThe best time to do this hike is early in the morning, as you will get a clear view of the Yariguies mountain range. These are some useful tips for you to take into account while planning your hike: - Use comfortable shoes - Wear a hat and don’t forget to put some sunscreen - Bring your own water bottle for the hike - Early hikers arrive to Guane just on time for breakfast. Bring some extra cash to enjoy a delicious and traditional meal in this town. Finally, if you are tired and don't want to walk upwards, you can ride back along the paved road using public transportation. Buses and tuc-tuc leave from Guane’s main square.