Mysterious natural pools in Las Gachas
Mysterious natural pools in the Las Gachas stream, where you can not only enjoy the scenery and a good dip inside the natural jacuzzies, but the rock becomes a kind of slide.
The image of The Virgin of Guadalupe is in every corner of the town: on the doors of the houses, on the roofs of the cars, and on the flags hanging from the windows. It’s not Mexico, it’s the south of Santander, in Colombia. It is Guadalupe, a municipality named after the devotion of its inhabitants, who celebrate the Virgin of Guadalupe every day on December 12, as well as the Virgen del Carmen every July 16.
Of Guadalupe little was known, and even less of the mysterious natural pools. This town was founded in 1715 and became a municipality in 1887. It is located approximately four hours from Bucaramanga and two from San Gil by land. It is part of the department of adventure tourism, Guadalupe is also a destination to explore because of the diversity it shelters in places such as El Perico cave, Pozo de la Gloria, and Peña del Cajón.
However, the magnificent secret that kept this municipality began to attract, in recent years, hundreds of domestic and foreign tourists curious to know one of the most authentic places in Colombia and perhaps the world: the Las Gachas stream, with its mysterious natural pools, a paved road in Guadalupe where crystalline water, rock formations, colors and silence converge.
The enigma behind the wells
Hidden among trees and bushes is the Las Gachas stream, with its mysterious natural pools. It is a strip of reddish rock that is adorned with more than 250 small wells, wide, elongated, round, shallow and deep through which runs crystal clear water, giving the sensation of moving in unison with the clouds of the sky. Those who know the stream say that these wells, also called ‘gachas’, are like natural jacuzzies because, due to their characteristics, they can swim, rest and receive a massage from the water flow.
The way to get to Las Gachas is easy, because it is near the municipality of Guadalupe, yes, you have to walk more or less an hour and a half. Through a rocky path in the path Sabaneta are located the signs that indicate the way to the magnificent ravine. Throughout the tour you can breathe pure air, observe the green landscape and listen to the soft sound of the wind. And oh surprise, there are the mysterious natural pools.
Las Gachas originates in a sector of Sabaneta called El Tirano. The red stone begins to appear wet and clear, it is normal that in the summer season, mainly at the beginning of the year, not much water flows in the ravine and the slate is dry.
However, the crystalline water begins to sprout on the surface, thus, from the top it looks like a spine with more than 500 meters from the beginning to its end. Wells coexist through that row, each one different from the other. Its average depth is 1.80 or 2 meters, inside them you can have fun who wants it, from children, youth and adults.
A singular gulch
Given the magnificence of the site, visitors who know it have labeled the Las Gachas stream as the Caño Cristales de Santander, for being a small river of colors. The stone, reddish completely, is of this tone because of the algae that grow on it and cover it, they are like their attire, although in some parts it changes its color to yellow or green. These algae make the stream smooth and slippery, hence there is a fundamental condition to visit these mysterious natural pools in Las Gachas: use socks.
The bathers enjoy the landscape and a good dip inside the natural jacuzzies, besides the rock is a kind of slide. It is normal to see tourists gliding down the rock until they fall into one of the wells. The body must be prepared to enter, because the water that runs through it is freezing although it is making a lot of sun and heat.
Connoisseurs of the ravine affirm that those mysterious natural pools arose after the erosion of the water on the earth. This runs from the upper part of the municipality and when it reaches the holes, it filters.
Las Gachas, a tourist destination
A video of a person slipping through the reddish rock and falling into wells that they called ‘the natural pools of Colombia’ was shared in several travel accounts through the Internet. It was the Las Gachas stream and those mysterious natural pools in Guadalupe, Santander, although he had not spoken of it before. Immediately, foreign travelers began to arrive at the place.
The weekend plan for many Colombians and foreign tourists is to travel to Las Gachas to enjoy this unique experience – in a place that is 100% natural – allowing family and carefree sharing.
Where to sleep
To visit the municipality of Guadalupe and reach the Las Gachas creek, and enjoy these mysterious natural pools, you can stay at a hotel that is located in front of the mountains, near the city of San Gil, and offers advice and Accompaniment to perform different adventure activities such as Bungee Jumping, speleology, paragliding and rafting.
Also, it is recommended to visit the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Guadalupe, one of the most beautiful temples in the country for its architecture. This place has been the heart of the Catholic religion in the municipality since colonial times. There, there is a replica of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe and one feels, without a doubt, the devotion of its visitors, who often go to ask for miracles to ‘La Morenita’.
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