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CANNABIS CULTURE: COLOMBIA - Soft laws on weed.


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Colombia takes it easy on the green since they already have enough to worry with with other narcotics. Maybe they just understand that there is nothing to be concerned about. This South American utopia legalised medicinal usage, decriminalised personal use up to a respectable 22g, and let people to grow up to 20 plants risk-free for their own enjoyment.

Colombia is home to some of the world's best cannabis heritage strains and has the most biodiversity per square inch on the earth. It is a natural wonderland of unfathomable proportions. The nation started smuggling marijuana into the USA in the 1960s and 1970s, and at that time, a variety of potent landraces were developed. This was before black market manufacturing went north to Mexico. In recent years, the country has abandoned its prior prohibition-style Drug War stance and legalised medicinal marijuana.


The most fascinating and vibrant cannabis tourist destination in the world right now is Colombia. Beautiful Caribbean beaches with white sand, trendy, artsy towns, picture-perfect historic mountain villages, a thriving music scene, and renowned archaeological sites are all found there.


As medicinal marijuana usage has become legal, Colombia has started to licence larger corporate operations, but it has also started to crack down on small farmers. For instance, the government has approved the establishment of a significant manufacturing and exporting facility adjacent to Medelln by the Canadian business PharmaCielo. Residents in the area tell me they fear raids on small companies; last year, it was actually harder to buy reasonably priced natural cannabis in the larger cities than it was when it was fully banned.


Although the country's simple cannabis culture is still prevalent, politics and big business may start to change that in the coming years. The best time to see Colombia's stunning scenery and learn about its distinctive cannabis culture is therefore right now, while it is still developing. The fact that cannabis is freely accessible across the country is the finest aspect. Where to go while you stay at this eco-friendly resort is listed below: Every single one stands out as a special refuge for cannabis enthusiasts.


Tayrona National Park, where the highest coastal mountains in the whole world descend to the Caribbean Sea's turquoise waves, is the most visited natural area in Colombia. The lower coastal area of the park, where there are several camping areas where you may pitch a tent or hang a hammock, and drift off to the sound of the gently lapping waves, is home to the Sierra Santa Marta range, which peaks up to snow-capped heights of over 18,000 feet in a few kilometres.


The five-day trek to the Lost City, which winds deeply into the hillside shrouded in jungle, is regarded as Colombia's answer to Machu Picchu and is definitely worth the effort despite the fact that a large portion of this lovely upper environment is off-limits and controlled by the independent Kogi Indians. Colombian Gold, a superb old-school sativa ancestral strain that delivers a strong and energising high, is grown extensively in the highlands. There are still significant coca producing areas on these wooded mountain slopes, and some Lost City hikes incorporate visits to processing facilities as part of the itinerary. The energising and spicy Limón Verde, as well as my personal favourite, Punto Rojo (Red Point), a well-known strain connected to Panama Red, are other strains that are emerging in the Santa Marta region.


Near Tayrona National Park, there are several beach villages where visitors may unwind in front of one of the most magnificent backdrops on earth. Taganga used to be a little fishing hamlet, but it is now a well-liked rest area for travellers from all over the world. However, locations like Palomino, which provide more laid-back beach settings, may be found on the other side of Tayrona. With some of the most breathtaking beaches on earth and an abundance of top-shelf organic marijuana, Tayrona National Park is as close as it gets to a marijuana enthusiast's utopia.


The 12 million-person, 9,000-foot-high capital of Colombia is so hip that it resembles New York City at its height in the 1980s. The city's street murals have garnered so much appreciation that a large portion of it is now regarded as a public art gallery. Bicycles control the roads, the café culture matches Seattle's, theatre and poetry festivals are a regular occurrence. Bogota is home to intelligent people, and a run of Green Party and other progressive mayors have transformed the formerly chaotic city into one of the greenest on the continent. Of course, our city has a fantastic cannabis culture.


Despite being distant from a large growing zone, Bogotá is where much of Colombia's cannabis innovation is occurring. A trip through La Candelaria, the city's ancient district, will take you to a number of head stores, including Ina Jah, which is situated just beneath the Chorro de Quevedo, the city's oldest square and a popular hangout for smokers day and night. Before marching on the president's residence, the annual Carnaval Cannábico Bogotá, or Cannabis Carnaval, entirely takes over the city's Parque Nacional. The local creative class has produced a limitless array of sprays, salves, alcohol-infused cannabis shots, and other products, all of which are sold for extremely low costs. The delectable Mango Biche (Green Mango) and other herbs from all across the nation are sold on the streets of the nation's capital, while there is also a lot of heavily-processed corporate cannabis now vying for market share there.


The edibles sector in Bogotá, which is actually cutting-edge and boasts a sizable number of incredibly excellent bakers and chefs, is what I find to be the city's most amazing feature. Every day in La Candelaria, as well as at the significant farmers market and artisan fair in Usaquén on Sundays, mouthwatering cookies, brownies, and other baked goods are offered in the open.


To stay up to date with their offers, find a producer you enjoy and like their Facebook page. Personally, I adore the Gato Callejero, where you can get their powerful Snickers brownies to be brought right to your hotel room.


Under the influence of a little herb, riding the cable car to the Monserrate mountaintop sanctuary and mirador for panoramic views over Bogotá is mind-blowing, and exploring the intricate 14-karat gold artwork of the ancient Muisca civilization at the Museo del Oro (Gold Museum) is even more fascinating when you're wearing your Mary Jane shoes.


Nobody is sure why, but over a thousand years ago, a highly developed civilization that occupied a large portion of Southern Colombia carved enormous stone statues into the gently sloping green hillside, creating what is now a UNESCO world heritage site and the largest collection of pre-Colombian religious monuments on the continent. The magnificent antique artworks provide the area surrounding the small colonial valley village of San Agustn a touch of legendary wonder. Punto Rojo cannabis, which grows in abundance in the town's fertile soil and has been meticulously cultivated for centuries by the mostly indigenous residents, is also well-known for being of extremely high quality and extremely low cost.


The highlight of many travellers' trips to Colombia is hiking to the different waterfalls and ancient sites while sipping some Punto Rojo, and the town has drawn a sizable permanent community of expats who simply cannot give up the lifestyle. San Agustin has a number of low-profile, villa-style hotels outside of the town as well as inexpensive backpacker-style lodgings in the cobblestone-paved town itself, such as La Casa de François, where roses grow amid the cannabis flowers and time stops still.


Due to the extensive African influences left over from a slave trade that was as fierce as any found in Brazil for decades, Colombia's Pacific coastline flows to a beat of its own. In actuality, Salvador de Bahia, Brazil, and Cali, the third-largest city in the nation and the only significant metropolis in the Pacific region, are the two blackest cities in South America. That implies that it has a strong soul. Many tourists pass by Cali since it appears to be just another metropolitan environment, but if you explore the music and try some local weed, you'll see why the locals refer to Cali as the surcusal de nuevo cielo (literally, "a new branch of paradise on earth").


Don't go wandering about in the Farallon Highlands alone since they are a busy narco-trafficking area. The rainforest-covered crags of the mountains add an intriguing background to Cali's generally dreary appearance. There is no need to The country's highest-quality cannabis, including the locally grown Corinto variety, is easily accessible.


It is smooth, sweet, and called for a local town where weed is processed in large quantities. Corinto is widely available across California, notably in pre-rolled joints right there at San Antonio Park, a lush vista point that overlooks the city skyline and is frequently crowded with couples and children on weeknights. A bed & breakfast or cheap hostel in a historical setting may be found in this colonial district.


You won't go inside a cab, restaurant, or even a bank in this tropical metropolis without hearing the syncopated pulse of salsa, which is popular across Latin America. The salsa in Cali is influenced by the city's vibrant cannabis culture, much like jazz in the US or reggae in Jamaica, and some of the greatest dancers I know always take a smoke before ripping up the floor.


With an elevated mind (or without), Cali-style salsa is quite simply out of this world. To see this pure joy in motion for yourself, head outside of the city limits to Juanchito, where salsatecas that have been grooving since the 60s, including the mighty Chango, stay packed until the sun comes up.



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Linda Barnes
Linda Barnes
22 sept 2022

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