I took the opportunity of my stay in Bogotá to visit Zipaquirá, a small town about an hour from the capital. Its main attraction is its salt mine… AND the gigantic cathedral they installed in it, which is declared to be Colombia’s first wonder. It sure did impress me, as I never spent so much time in a religious building before. About 6 hours. Admiring the numerous galleries, the incredible designs the salt is drawing on the walls and ceilings… and also: watching a movie, eating, and pretending to be a mine worker.
We were equipped with a helmet, and a light which we were not allowed to use half of the time. Of course, there is always one or the other person in the assistance to disobey the instructions, which invariably generated a series of exasperated “turn it off” every 10 seconds.
I often suspect the organisers of those guided tours to make up a number of things, just because they enjoy watching tourists making fools of themselves. We kept on bumping into each other, hitting the low ceiling with the head… and the helmets. We even got a pickaxe pushed in our hands, to make the experience even more real. As a cherry on the cake, we simulated an explosion in the mine.
Too many emotions for one day. I felt the sudden need to go back to the surface, breathe some fresh air and have a coffee.