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Colombia

The perfect travel itinerary for one week in Medellín

Medellín Comuna 13 owl grafitti

My girlfriend visited me for a week in Medellín and I felt a great responsibility to maximize her vacation experience. She had come all the way from Germany to visit, so I made sure that she experienced Medellín in all its glory. I lived for four months in Medellín and I crammed all the touristy activities in one week because my main focus was work and I didn’t want to do the activities twice.

I did extensive research and wrote the perfect travel itinerary in advance. It was important for me to find a good mix of action, culture and nature. The only activity outside of Medellín is the day trip to Guatape. I slightly tweaked the original itinerary based on my experience.

Day 1: Arrival at José María Córdova International Airport

The easiest option to get to Medellín is to take one of the white airport taxis lined up in front of the airport. The white taxis are bigger and more comfortable than the small yellow taxis and the ride costs $24. There are also cheaper options like taking a bus or a shared taxi.

Cost:
$24

Day 2: Coffee Farm Tour

Colombia is known for its excellent coffee and coffee is still a central element of the economy. As a hardcore coffee drinker, I wanted to know more about the production process of the black gold. Most coffee farms are in the countryside of Medellín and you have to drive for a couple of hours to get there. I was delighted when I found out that there is also a coffee farm in Sabaneta. Urbania Café organizes the tour. They empower coffee farmers by helping them to produce higher quality coffee. I booked the Coffee – From the seed to the cup tour on Airbnb experiences. As the name suggests, the tour covers the whole process of coffee cultivation and production and it takes 4 hours.

You can take the Metro to La Estrella Metro station and take a taxi from there to the coffee farm. You can also walk from the station. An American woman was the only other person taking the tour. Our guide Julian explained the harvest, the post-harvest, the milling, the roasting, the sourcing and the different forms of coffee preparation. He also explained the coffee business and the coffee market. We finished the tour with a coffee tasting.

Costs:
$33 + Metro/taxi fare

Day 3: Walking Tour Comuna 13 and Paragliding in San Felix

Comuna San Javier better known as Comuna 13 is one of sixteen districts in Medellín. When tourists talk about Comuna 13, they usually mean the small area around the outdoor escalators on the hills. Once considered the most dangerous neighborhood of Medellín it is now a major tourist attraction because of its graffiti and its view over the city. There is plenty of security and police presence and I felt safe during the day. I recommend taking a free walking tour for a better understanding of the dark history of the district.

We did a free walking tour organized by Zippy Tour. We met at 10 AM in front of the San Javier Metro station and walked to the escalators with our local guide John. He talked about the history of Comuna 13, his personal story and the graffiti. We went to the viewpoint at the end of the escalators and our tour ended soon afterward. He suggested an appropriate tip and I recommend to be generous.

We wanted to go paragliding next, so we walked back to San Javier Metro station. We had booked a flight with paragliding medellín. They operate in San Felix just outside of Medellín and you have to take the Metrocable to get there. We took the Metrocable from San Javier Metro station to the last station called La Aurora. The Metrocable ride is an experience in itself. We had arranged a shuttle from La Aurora station with paragliding medellín. The owner Ruben aka “Ruben Fly” greeted us warmly and drove us in his van to his office. From there we had to walk up a steep hill to the launch site. The whole operation was very professional: We were insured and we had to sign a form and watch a safety video on an iPad.

It was my first time paragliding and I didn’t know what to expect. It turned out that paragliding is more relaxed than I thought. For the take-off, I had to run down the hill and we took off before reaching the abyss. The pilot did all the work and all I had to do was enjoy the view over Bello, a suburb of Medellín. My girlfriend and I had gotten walkie-talkies, so we chatted for a little bit. We circled up and down for 20 minutes and then we landed on the back side of the starting spot. I can’t imagine a better place for paragliding than the Andes. The experience was exciting and surreal at the same time. It’s like discovering a whole new world and it felt similar to scuba diving for the first time. We walked down to the office where Ruben drove us back to La Aurora Metro station. From there we took the Metrocable again. You don’t have to pay for a ride at San Javier Metro station because the Metro and the Metrocable belong to the same system.

Costs:
Walking Tour tip $X + Paragliding $52 + Paragliding Shuttle $8 + Metro fare

Day 4: Memory House Museum, Botero Park, Jardín Botánico

Three sights might seem excessive for one day, but they are all in the same area and it’s easy to hail a taxi to get to the next one. You have to pay only the taxi fare because all three sights are free.

The Memory House Museum is dedicated to the victims of the armed conflict in Medellín. It’s a good place to get a better understanding of the different layers of the conflict and to learn about the perspective of the victims and their families. The Memory House Museum does a great job of explaining the timeline of the conflict in Medellín. I recommend starting with the Memory House Museum and doing more lighthearted activities afterward.

I was surprised that I didn’t see any tourists when we visited Botero Park. The center has a somewhat sketchy reputation, but during the day I felt safe. Botero Park is an outside park that displays 23 sculptures by Botero. I like his sculptures more than his paintings, so I enjoyed walking around and taking pictures. If you want to see a collection of his paintings you have to visit the Museum of Antioquia next to the park. After 30 minutes we took a taxi to Jardín Botánico.

I noticed people sitting on blankets on the grass in Jardin Botánico, which I hadn’t seen before in Medellín. In Europe, it’s common to see small groups of friends (mostly students) and families sitting on the grass and enjoying the sun in public parks. I didn’t sit down because the Iguanas caught my attention. After an hour of Iguana watching, we walked to the nearby Universidad metro station (Line A) and headed back home.

Cost:
Metro/taxi fare

Day 5: Day Trip to Guatape

Guatape is most famous for its giant rock overlooking the surrounding lake scenery. The ride from Medellín to Guatape takes around 2 hours and therefore you should plan a whole day for the excursion. You can take a public bus or pay for a private shuttle to get there. Both options didn’t appeal to me, so I booked a guided bus tour with Tours Guatape. Normally, I am not a big fan of guided bus tours, but I was pleasantly surprised by this one. The tour was a bargain and cost $30. The biggest advantage is that you see more than just the rock. You also visit the towns Guatape, Marinilla and Peñol. Breakfast and lunch are also included in the price. My tour included a boat trip, but they have removed it from the program. A competitor called Viaje Medellín offers a Guatape tour with a boat trip for $45.

I recommend visiting Guatape during the week because the Rock of Guatapé is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Antioquia. A local family owns the rock and you have to pay an entrance fee of $6 to climb the stairs to the top. The view from the rock is well worth the $6 and a must for outdoor enthusiasts.

Costs:
Guided Bus Tour $30 + Entrance fee $6

Day 6: Pablo Escobar Tour

The Pablo Escobar Tour is the only controversial item on the itinerary and I can understand people who feel uneasy about the current glorification of Pablo Escobar. I have to cringe at the thought of a group of clueless American and European backpackers doing a sensationalist Pablo Escobar Tour and buying a Pablo Escobar t-shirt afterward. But Pablo Escobar is also part of Medellíns history and you have to understand the past to understand the massive transformation of Medellín. I recommend visiting the Memory House Museum before to understand the negative consequences of his actions. It’s a balancing act and I was careful to choose a legitimate guide.

I booked the Pablo Escobar, the complete true story tour on Airbnb Experiences. The guide Camila was friendly and knowledgeable. The tour took three hours and had three stops: the Monaco building in Medellín, the cathedral jail in Envigado and his grave in Itagüí. The Monaco building was recently demolished to make room for a memorial. My highlight was the visit to the cathedral jail, which Pablo Escobar build for himself. The prison overlooked the city and had a helipad. The last stop was Escobar’s cemetery in Itagüí. I felt a bit uncomfortable about visiting the grave of a mass murderer. The grave itself wasn’t interesting, but the graveyard was impressive. It’s a large meadow with a beautiful view.

My girlfriend and I were the only ones taking the tour. The tour included a driver who picked us up at our apartment in the morning and dropped us of afterward. Camila presented us with different viewpoints about events so that we could get a better picture of the conflict. The American perspective is different from the Colombian one. And the narco perspective is different from the perspective of the government.

Cost: $43

Day 7: Departure at José María Córdova International Airport

The most convenient option is to order a white taxi for the ride back to the airport. You can buy souvenirs like Colombian coffee and mugs at the small Juan Valdez Café inside the Airport.

Cost:
$24

Alternatives

If you don’t like an item of the itinerary you can replace it with one of the following items:

Cerro de Las Tres Cruces: A moderate hike with a great view of the city. Don’t go late in the day to avoid getting robbed.

Ciclovia: Avenida Poblado closes between 7 am and 1 pm every Sunday and opens for cyclists, runners and the general public.

Museo de Antioquia: The most renowned museum in Medellín with a large Botero section.

Museo de Arte Moderno de Medellín: Underrated museum for modern art.

Parque Arví: A popular nature preserve accessible by Metrocable.

Pueblito Paisa: A small replica town on Cerro Nutibara. The view from Cerro Nutibara is more impressive than the town.

Check out Catalyst Weekly if you want to find out about events during your stay.

Accommodation

Most people stay either in Laureles or in Poblado and I have written a comparison of both neighborhoods on Quora. We stayed in an Airbnb apartment during the week. Our apartment was on the 16th floor and had an incredible view. Our building was right next to Calle 70 in Laureles. A similar apartment in Europe or the States would have been out of reach for us. In the afternoons, we strolled around Medellín and I showed my girlfriend my favorite cafés (Café Naturalia, Café Revolución 2 and Café Zeppelin) and restaurants (Naan, Opera Pizza and Uno más Uno) in Laureles.

Conclusion

I researched the current prices carefully, but they can change slightly based on exchange rate fluctuations and price changes. The prices have already gone up since I did the activities last year. Medellín is still great value for money and I recommend to spend at least a week to get a feel for the city.

It’s tempting to cram as many activities and cities as possible into your itinerary to maximize your experience, but fast travel comes at the expense of depth. In particular, Americans tend to travel fast. I think it’s because they have less vacation than Europeans and therefore they want to make the most of their limited time. I tried to find a balance between action and relaxation. The itinerary has two full-day activities (Comuna 13/Guatape + Paragliding) and three more relaxed half-day activities. Now you know everything you need to know about traveling to Medellín for one week.
The rest is up to you,

 

 

 

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Review of my meditation retreat at La Casa de Loto (December 2018)

Terrace of La Casa de Loto

I decided to finish my four-months stay in Medellín with a week-long meditation retreat. I had been planning to go on a retreat for a long time and I figured why not do it in Colombia. I also like to work towards a goal and use it as motivation. After a quick google search, it became clear that La Casa de Loto was the only option for a retreat in Medellín. I didn’t mind because the program looked well rounded and the retreat had great reviews. The small group size of the retreat also appealed to me. La Casa de Loto is located in El Carmen de Viboral, which is an 80 minutes ride away from Medellín and a 45 minutes ride away from the José María Córdova International Airport.

Booking

You can book a private room ($660 per week) or a shared room ($450 per week). The monthly rate is lower. I booked a shared room by email. You can also use a booking platform like BookYogaRetreats. Additionally, I booked a driver, who picked me up in Laureles. I was the only one booking the service so I wasn’t able to share the costs and I had to pay the whole price ($45). Transportation from Poblado is a little cheaper. You can also hire a driver on your own, but he might get lost because the road to La Casa de Loto is easy to miss. A couple of retreaters came late because their driver got lost. Another option is to take a shared taxi from the San Diego Mall to the airport and book a driver from there.

Sunday, Day 1

I arrived in the afternoon and got greeted by Pema, the German founder of the retreat. He has an extraordinary life story, which led him from a struggle with addiction and depression in Berlin to living in Tibetan monasteries for over two years before finally coming to Colombia. He instantly made an impression on me with his centered and compassionate demeanor and I knew I was in good hands during the retreat. We went inside to the living room, where other retreaters were already gathering. I spent the first 30 minutes filling out a questionnaire, booking an Ayurveda Massage and choosing my meal plan (chicken or vegetarian). Usually, retreats offer only vegetarian food and almost everyone in our group chose the vegetarian option.

The afternoon was the last chance to talk to other retreaters before the silence started. I spoke briefly to a social worker from the Netherlands, who was traveling around Latin America with her boyfriend. Our group consisted of 7 retreaters (3 men and 4 women), a yoga teacher and Pema. The yoga teacher was from Spain and took part in a teacher-in-residence program of La Casa de Loto. I shared my room with two other young guys. Both were in their twenties and I talked to them for the first time after the retreat. One of them was a British guy who had worked for Goldman Sachs and was using his free time in between jobs for this retreat. The other one was German. He had finished his studies in Australia recently and was about to start a finance job in Australia.

I noticed the clean air and the calmness in comparison with the constant noise pollution of cars and street vendors in Medellín. The silence was only broken by an occasional dog bark or a call by a donkey. The altitude of El Carmen de Viboral is higher than Medellín and therefore the temperature was lower and I wore a sweater instead of a t-shirt.

The finca itself was also impressive. The living room terrace overlooking the surrounding valley was the centerpiece of the finca. I also liked the natural style of the interior and my room was much nicer than expected. Four well-trained dogs and two cats were milling around and added to the relaxed atmosphere. I felt at home right away and was more than happy to spend a week in this environment.

We went to the dojo for our first guided meditation and the introduction. The dojo is at the bottom of the valley and you have to walk downwards for a couple of minutes. I liked the separation of the dojo and the finca because the walk to the dojo became part of the daily ritual. Pema guided a meditation, explained the schedule to us and answered remaining questions about the retreat. He recommended meditating between 24 and 48 minutes per session depending on our experience level. I am still a beginner, so I decided to meditate for 24 minutes per session. His talk centered around the elephant mind and the monkey mind (picture below). His daily talks focused on different aspects of Buddhism.

Monday to Wednesday (Day 2, 3, 4)

We followed the meditation schedule from Monday to Wednesday. The program consisted of yoga in the morning and several meditation sessions throughout the day. The days started at 6 AM and ended at 10 PM. The daily schedule was as follows:

6 AMSilent Meditation
7 AMBreakfast
8 AMWalking Meditation
9 AMGuided Yoga
11 AMSilent Meditation
12 PMLunch
2 PMWalking Meditation
3 PMGuided Analytical Meditation
4 PMTea Time
6 PMSilent Meditation
7 PMDinner
8 PMWalking Meditation
10 PMLights out

Despite living together, we spent most of the day in solitude. The silent meditations and the walking meditations were our responsibility and we could do them wherever we felt most comfortable. I meditated in my room in the morning and the evening and during the day I went to the dojo. Other retreaters also mediated in the living room, on the terrace and in the garden. The guided yoga and meditation sessions and the meals were the only group activities. During the guided yoga and meditation sessions it was allowed to speak and ask questions.

Thursday, Day 5

Thursday was different in that reading and long walks were banned to reduce stimulation and to facilitate introspection. The schedule was reduced to the meals and the guided meditation and Pema recommended to skip the yoga session in the morning. Pema also told us to meditate without the fixed times and without a timer. I enjoyed the missing schedule and I was able to let go of the checklist mentality, which I had brought with me from everyday life. As a result, I was more present during the day.

Friday, Day 6

After the Thursday break, we went back to following the regular meditation schedule. My presence from Thursday carried over to Friday and I felt great. My Ayurvedic massage was scheduled for the afternoon and I went to a small hut in the garden for the massage. The masseur Carlos had a strong presence and radiated positive energy. The massage was great and ended with a short explanation of my Ayurvedic body type.

Pema revoked the silence after the guided meditation and I was a little taken aback by the sudden eruption of chatter. It seemed like everyone was happy to talk again after one week of silence. In the evening, I got to know the other retreaters and we shared our experiences. I think a meditation retreat attracts open-minded people and I liked everyone.

Saturday, Day 7

A final guided meditation with Pema replaced the yoga session in the morning and the retreat was over after lunch. I left La Casa de Loto with a great sense of gratitude and inner peace. One of the retreaters gave me a ride back to Medellín, where I was greeted by the noise and air pollution of city life.

My Experience

I read The Miracle of Mindfulness and You are here: Discovering the Magic of the Present Moment by Thich Nhat Hanh during the retreat. I like his clear and personal writing style. The books complemented the daily meditation sessions and the talks by Pema.

I think the peaceful environment of La Casa de Loto is perfect for a retreat. The combination of cats and dogs, healthy food and scenic countryside has a calming effect. I also liked the personal responsibility of following the schedule. Some people in our group took the meditation schedule very serious and others were less committed and skipped a couple of meditation sessions. I think it’s nice that people can meditate at their own pace.

I noticed how I slowed down throughout the week, mentally and physically. I didn’t get caught up in random thoughts as often, and when I got caught up, I noticed quickly and shifted my focus back to the present moment. I had never experienced a mental clarity like this before and the effect probably would have been even stronger if I had stayed longer than one week. I also moved slower and more deliberate. I noticed this the most during my walking meditations, where I slowed down with each passing day.

The daily talks by Pema were my highlight of the retreat. I liked his straightforward teaching style and his thought-provoking impulses. He was able to make Buddhist concepts like gratitude and forgiveness more relatable. He also gave practical advice on how to implement mindfulness in your daily life. He answered general questions during the talks and he was also available for personal questions after the talks. I had a short conversation with him and he was able to give me a new perspective on my problem. The retreat was the highlight of my four months stay in Colombia in terms of personal growth.

Conclusion

Our group consisted of meditation beginners, but I think the retreat is also valuable for advanced practitioners. The retreat was a great starting point for my spiritual journey. I think the teacher, the program and the environment are the most important elements of a retreat. Pema is a great teacher and he created a balanced program in a peaceful environment and therefore I can recommend La Casa de Loto wholeheartedly. Now you know everything you need to know about La Casa de Loto. The rest is up to you,

 

 

 

Recommended books

The Miracle of Mindfulness
You are here: Discovering the Magic of the Present Moment

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The ultimate Bootstrapping Guide for Medellín

view of the Santa Elena Mall in Medellín

Imagine that you can upgrade your lifestyle while saving money in a matter of days. You can rent a nice apartment, eat out daily, work out in a premium gym, hire a personal trainer and take a cab whenever you want. What sounds to be too good to be true is accessible to everyone in the Western world. The only caveat is that you must be willing to move to another country.

Geoarbitrage

Tim Ferriss popularized the term geoarbitrage with his book The 4-Hour Workweek. Geoarbitrage means moving to a cheap location with a high quality of life while still earning your income in a strong currency like Dollar or Euro. This way you kill two birds with one stone. Your expenses are substantially lower and your income goes much farther. The idea is as brilliant as it is simple. The internet and technological progress have made this decoupling of location and income possible in recent years. However, the majority of people can’t take advantage of this opportunity because they have a 9-5 job, which requires them to work in a gray cubicle for 40 hours a week. You should consider this loss of locational (and time) freedom before taking a new job.

Extending your runway

Saving money is especially important for entrepreneurs in the early phase of their business. You want to invest every penny in your business and reduce your personal expenses to the minimum. Reducing your living costs can prolong the runway of your business significantly. It makes a huge difference if you can stretch your budget from 6 months of runway to 12 months of runway. This extra six months can make or break a business.

You should only consider cities with a large entrepreneurial scene. Connecting with other entrepreneurs increases your chances of success because it keeps you motivated and accelerates your learning process.

Digital Nomad Hubs

Chiang Mai and Ubud are classic examples of geoarbitrage. Both cities are dirt cheap and offer a high quality of life. This attractive combination makes them the most popular hubs for digital nomads in South East Asia. What sets them apart from similar cities is their strong entrepreneurial scene, which reinforces their status as top destinations.

Medellín is the biggest hub in Latin America for digital nomads, but it’s not as cheap as Chiang Mai and Ubud. It’s still less expensive than the States and Europe, but the affordability is not its main selling point. Digital nomads mainly come to Medellín because of its proximity to the States, Latin culture, warm weather and overall high quality of life.

Medellín

Medellín isn’t a cheap city for Latin American standards, but it offers excellent value for money. I spent only $180 on rent instead of $540 like I did in Cologne. I was also able to upgrade my lifestyle in many ways while saving money. I never take taxis in Germany, and I took dozens of them in Medellín because it’s so cheap. For example, the ride from Laureles to Poblado costs $3-4. I also ate out every day for a healthy lunch, which set me back a measly $4-6. Here are some pointers on how to bootstrap in Medellín:

Location

My first piece of advice is to live in Laureles instead of Poblado. Rents are cheaper and it’s less touristy. I have written a comparison between Poblado and Laureles on Quora. Other neighborhoods like Bélen and Sabaneta are still cheaper, but they lack an entrepreneurial scene.

Accommodation

Finding a room in a shared flat on CompartoApto is the cheapest option. You can also find rooms and apartments in all price ranges on Airbnb. Airbnb affords you more flexibility with your dates, but you have to pay a little premium for this convenience. I recommend finding an apartment as close as possible to your coworking space to save time.

Coworking

You can save money for a coworking membership by working from home and in cafés, but I recommend saving money elsewhere. Medellín has an excellent community of entrepreneurs and you should take full advantage of this opportunity. People who invest in a coworking membership also tend to be more serious about their work than their café counterparts in my experience.

A coworking space provides structure and easy access to likeminded people, who can hold you accountable and give you valuable advice. Not to mention working among other creative people is more fun than toiling away on your own. I worked for four months in La Casa Redonda and I loved every minute of it. They offer a monthly plan for $140 (COL$433.000) and an 8-day-ticket for $60 (COL$185.000).

La Casa Redonda closes early on Saturdays and is closed on Sundays, so I was forced to work in Cafés on the weekend. I can recommend Café Naturalia, Café Volcánico, De Los Andes Café, Café Revolución 2 and Starbucks for work. The Starbucks in Laureles is almost always packed though.

A viable alternative is coliving where you share a flat with like-minded entrepreneurs. This option is well suited for people who are already connected in Medellín and know capable entrepreneurs.

Transportation

You can choose between taxis and ubers. Both are ridiculously cheap and I prefer taxis because I don’t like dynamic pricing. I used the EasyTaxi app because the review system keeps the drivers honest and the few bad experiences I had were limited to taxis hailed from the street.

During the rush hour, the streets are clogged and the 15-minute-ride between Laureles and Poblado can take up to an hour and therefore taking the metro is faster. You don’t need a Civica metro card if you use the metro occasionally. You can buy a ticket for multiple rides (e.g., five rides) at the metro counter.

Food

Sample a bunch of restaurants with a menu del día and rotate between your favorites. When I was working at La Casa Redonda, I normally ended up at the cozy Café Zepellín. Their menu del día costs almost 5$ (COL$14.000) and includes an espresso afterward. My second go-to restaurant was Uno más Uno near Calle 70. You get a fresh and healthy meal (picture above) for $4 (COL$12.500).

SIM card

Colombia has three big networks: Claro, Tigo, and Movistar. Their offering is similar in terms of price and data, so it doesn’t matter which one you end up choosing. Everyone in Colombia uses WhatsApp, so a data plan is sufficient for most people. You have to register a new sim card in one of the few selected shops. The catch is that you need a Colombian ID or a Cedula Extranjera (no tourist visa) to register a sim card. If you buy a sim card and don’t register it in time, then the sim card gets deactivated after two weeks, and your cell phone gets blacklisted. The solution is to ask a Colombian friend or a friend with a Cedula Extranjera to come along to a selected Claro/Tigo/Movistar shop and buy and register a sim card for you.

Groceries

The cheapest supermarket chain in Medellín is D1 (picture above). The selection is limited so you can stock up on basics at D1 and buy the rest at a bigger supermarket like Exito. The cost savings weren’t significant enough for me to justify buying at two places so I bought everything at Exito except for fruits and meat. I recommend buying fruits and vegetables at your neighborhood tienda and meat at Colanta.

Activities

You can’t work nonstop. Sometimes you need a little break to recharge your batteries and return to work energized. Medellín offers something for every taste. Learning salsa or Spanish with a private teacher is a great way to unwind from work. I like to get out into nature to relax. Inexpensive tour companies like Kinkaju Hikes & Adventures offer tours in the surroundings of Medellín. Paragliding is another great way to relax and it costs only $50 (COL$160.000). The most popular day-trip from Medellín is Guatape with its Piedra del Peñol. If you want to get away to Bogotá or Cartagena for a couple of days, you can use the low-cost airline Viva Air.

Nightlife

Calle 70 has an abundance of bars and clubs and is the undisputed center of the nightlife in Laureles. I didn’t go out much, so I can’t recommend any clubs, but Catalyst Weekly has published a nightlife guide for Laureles. My general advice for entrepreneurs is to party less and work more. That doesn’t sound sexy, but the loss of productivity due to hangovers adds up over time.

Conclusion

You can easily bootstrap in Medellín. The only thing you need is a little bit of planning and financial discipline. I didn’t save a lot of money during my four months stay in Medellín because I spent extra money on luxuries like traveling, private salsa classes and a week-long meditation retreat. Without this additional spending I would have saved a significant amount of money. My personal and professional growth during these four months was immense and worth every peso. Now you know everything you need to know about bootstrapping in Medellín.
The rest is up to you,