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active 3 hours ago

Michael Gold

Since I was little, I have been fascinated by getting to know the great wide world. The exchange with other cultures has always been my focus. Therefore, I have made my interest my profession. In Germany, I studied tourism management and specialized in sustainable tourism. During my travels, I found a country where I feel most comfortable: Colombia! The Colombian advertising slogan: "The only risk is wanting to stay" has proven true for me. In San Agustín, I have found my second home and from here I am happy to share the magic of the country with tourists from all over the world.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"Responsible and sustainable tourism is my focus. For me it is important that travel has a positive impact - for the visitors, as well as for the hosts. Therefore, I have specialized in sustainable tourism. It is important to achieve a good cultural exchange, to protect nature, and at the same time to combine one's own interests. Nature and adventure tourism is my main area of expertise. "

How did you get involved in travel?

"Travel broadens your horizons! The world has so much to offer and so many exciting places and stories to discover. That's why I've loved traveling all my life - alone, with my family, together with friends. It's great to share experiences and impressions. Through my travel experience in about 40 different countries so far, I have made friends all over the world. My university has shown me the theoretical background of tourism, jobs in hotels and with tour operators helped me with the practical component."

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"After graduating from school, I packed my travel backpack and set off on a long journey through Central and South America. During this period I fell in love with this continent! Hiking tours, boat trips, diving, fishing, jungle tours, visits to deserts, and above all many special life stories and open-minded people. These experiences as a whole package describe for me the most amazing travel experiences - thanks to this trip I decided to live in Colombia. And I am extremely happy about that."

Michael is part of the following groups: Colombia Travel Agents, Colombia Family Travel Agents
Top itineraries and travel advice
Family itineraries
Luxury itineraries

Favorite experiences

Tour of Tayrona National Park

Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona (Tayrona National Park) is one of about 58 national parks in Colombia, and this protected area is known for having some of the most virgin coastal landscapes in the entire country. Indeed, it's home to one of the most iconic "postcard" destinations in Colombia: the...

Guatapé Day Trip

The town of Guatapé is one of the crown jewels of central Colombia's Antioquia region. There are a few reasons for this, not the least of which is El Peñol, a 7,000-foot (2,135-meter) granite rock that rises out of the ground like a giant silver bullet. A private eight-hour tour of the town...

Zipaquirá & Nemecón Salt Mines Day-Trip

A mere 50 minutes north of Bogotá lies the town of Zipaquirá, which became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007. While certainly a charming colonial town, Zipaquirá is a must-visit Colombian destination for one single landmark: the Salt Cathedral, located just outside of town. This is indeed a...

Coffee Finca - Hiking - Explore Salento

It's fitting that Salento, one of the most beautiful colonial towns in Colombia, is surrounded by the Valle de Cocora (Cocora Valley), which happens to be one of the most beautiful valleys in Colombia. This fertile region, denoted by rolling green hills, abounds with various coffee estates that...

La Guajira: Punta Gallinas & Taroa Dunes

La Guajira is almost a world apart from the green and tropical Colombia most travelers know. The arid desert landscapes in this region are foreboding yet beautiful, with the sun-scorched earth and steep red dunes tapering off into the azure waters of the Caribbean. The most epic landscapes here...

Rosario Islands Day Trip

Cartagena de Indias is not only a beautiful Caribbean coastal destination, but it's also one of the most well-preserved Spanish Colonial cities in South America. Back when the Spaniards were in charge, they utilized a network of offshore islands to help protect their shipments of gold. Beyond...

Recent trip reviews for Michael

Michael and the Kim Kim group crafted an amazing Colombian Trip
Colombia | Feb 9 - Feb 21, 2024

Andrea
Andrea M.
Chicago, IL | Reviewed on Feb 29, 2024
Michael and the Kim Kim group were amazing to work with. They shaped a wonderful itinerary for our group. We loved Bogotá and the great neighborhood they had us stay with a great tour guide who let us try all the local fruit. Medellín exceeded our expectations. We loved this city and our only regret was that we didn't adjust our itinerary and spend more time here. We had Andres for 3 days and he made us fall in love with the city. All the activities (white water rafting, touring Comuna... Read more

Michael and the Kim Kim group were amazing to work with. They shaped a wonderful itinerary for our group. We loved Bogotá and the great neighborhood they had us stay with a great tour guide who let us try all the local fruit. Medellín exceeded our expectations. We loved this city and our only regret was that we didn't adjust our itinerary and spend more time here. We had Andres for 3 days and he made us fall in love with the city. All the activities (white water rafting, touring Comuna 13 & the local coffee farm) were amazing. We also loved Tayrona and again we didn't have enough days in our trip to extend this portion, but it was beautiful. The hotel the group booked for us was wonderful. We ended the trip in Cartagena. Anther amazing city. I personally am not a fan of the heat, so fewer days here would have worked better in my itinerary, but that is just because of my personal preference. Again, we are so happy to have used Michael and the Kim Kim group and we would not have had such a great trip without them.

Activity Review
Cartagena Bike Tour
Cartagena Bike Tour
Cartagena

Not a good place to bike and received not a lot of city information. The Guides did their best to keep us safe, but I wouldn't have recommended this tour.

Quality of Experience
Have a walking tour instead with more details of the city.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
More city information and interesting information
Transport
Not a good way to see the city
Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Mar 01, 2024

Hi Andrea,
Thank you so much for your wonderful feedback! I'm glad to know that you enjoyed Bogotá and that Medellín exceeded your expectations. I also appreciate your honest reflection on Cartagena and the heat, as personal preferences can vary. We regret to hear that the bike tour might not have met your expectations. Your feedback is valuable, and we'll certainly take it into consideration for future improvements.
Safe travels!
Michael & The Chaska Tours Team

Exceeded our expectations
Colombia | Feb 9 - Feb 21, 2024

M
Michael M.
Chicago, IL | Reviewed on Feb 29, 2024
Our 2 week trip to Colombia was excellent and provided a nice variety of experiences. Our highlight was our guide Andres in and around Medellin. He was incredibly informative, kind and generally a pleasant person to be around. He made this part of our trip really amazing, from the city tour to our experience at a coffee farm. Read more

Our 2 week trip to Colombia was excellent and provided a nice variety of experiences. Our highlight was our guide Andres in and around Medellin. He was incredibly informative, kind and generally a pleasant person to be around. He made this part of our trip really amazing, from the city tour to our experience at a coffee farm.

Hotel Reviews
Senda Watapuy
Santa Marta

Very nice hotel in a beautiful location. The staff was attentive and helpful throughout our stay.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
La Campana Hotel Boutique
Medellín

We enjoyed the location, comfort and staff at this hotel. The rooms were very comfortable and the staff were some of the friendliest and helpful people on our trip. The short walk to restaurants in Poblado was a nice perk.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Hotel Casa Deco
Bogotá

The hotel was in an excellent location near area attractions. However, the rooms were a bit dated and the noise from the street was loud. Having ear plugs at this hotel is a must.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Hotel Kartaxa Cartagena
Cartagena

The hotel room was small and not comfortable. Our room received strong kitchen smells every morning from the restaurant below. Noise from guests in the central atrium was constant and disruptive.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Cartagena Dance Class
Cartagena Dance Class
Cartagena

Very good instructor.

Cartagena Street Food Tour
Cartagena Street Food Tour
Cartagena

Interesting experience that we would not have done otherwise. Some of the tastiest food of our time in Cartagena.

Coffee-Culture Tour
Coffee-Culture Tour
Medellín

Wonderful guide and interesting experience to explore this natural farm.

Rosario Islands Day Trip
Rosario Islands Day Trip
Cartagena

This day trip was a disappointment. The accommodations were very basic - we didn't even have access to towels to rent. There was no water to wash hands at the bathroom. The water and beach were also very dirty with plastics and prophylactics.

Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Cartagena Bike Tour
Cartagena Bike Tour
Cartagena

The trip felt dangerous due to cycling through traffic. It was hard to enjoy and learn about the city due to this.

Rafting on Río Calderas
Rafting on Río Calderas
Medellín

Highlight of the trip. Excellent guides and fun experience.

Peñol Boulder & Guatapé Boat Trip
Peñol Boulder & Guatapé Boat Trip
Medellín

Despite not feeling well, I enjoyed the trip to these areas. Guatape was beautiful and I wish we had more time to explore this town.

Medellín Day Tour
Medellín Day Tour
Medellín

Excellent trip with our guide Andres. We explored areas of the city that we would not have visited otherwise. The lunch was also excellent.

Bogota Highlights Tour
Bogota Highlights Tour
Bogotá

We had an excellent guide, were able to visit Monserrate without waiting in a long line, and tasted a variety of native fruits. It was a great way to begin our trip.

Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Mar 01, 2024

Hi Michael,
Thank you so much for your kind words!Fantastic to hear that your two-week trip to Colombia was excellent and that you enjoyed a variety of experiences. It's especially wonderful to know that you had a really great time on the rafting excursion. If you ever plan another adventure to Colombia, we'd be thrilled to assist you. Safe travels!
Best regards,
The Chaska Tours Team

We had a wonderful family trip to Colombia th...
Colombia | Feb 8 - Feb 20, 2024

Dana
Dana L.
Brandon, MS | Reviewed on Feb 26, 2024
We had a wonderful family trip to Colombia thanks to the assistance of Michael!
We traveled as a family of 5, 2 adults and 3 children (ages 12, 10 and 3). Michael arranged all of our tours and transfers for us. Every guide we had was absolutely lovely and we enjoyed learning about their country and culture through the eyes of locals.
Our car transfers were all seamless. They arrived on time and in clean and spacious vehicles, even equipped with a car seat for our 3yo. The drivers...
Read more

We had a wonderful family trip to Colombia thanks to the assistance of Michael!
We traveled as a family of 5, 2 adults and 3 children (ages 12, 10 and 3). Michael arranged all of our tours and transfers for us. Every guide we had was absolutely lovely and we enjoyed learning about their country and culture through the eyes of locals.
Our car transfers were all seamless. They arrived on time and in clean and spacious vehicles, even equipped with a car seat for our 3yo. The drivers were accommodating and stopped when we needed for groceries, ATM or bathroom breaks. We especially appreciated Christian who was our driver on 3 separate occasions and went out of his way to meet all of our needs.

Hotel Reviews
Grand Hyatt Bogotá
Bogotá

A beautiful hotel, friendly and accommodating staff. We stayed in a 1BR suite that was absolutely perfect.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Senda Watapuy
Santa Marta

Absolutely beautiful and peaceful hotel on the edge of Tayrona Park, with beautiful views of the mountains and easy access to the river. Our cabana was spacious and clean, the food was delicious and reasonably priced. The staff was delightful and accommodating. So much better than the online pictures! This was our family's favorite hotel during our trip!

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Casa La Factoria by Faranda Boutique
Cartagena

Beautiful hotel in the center of Cartagena. We enjoyed escaping the heat in the beautiful courtyard pool and relaxing in the rooftop plunge pool. The included breakfast was expansive and delicious. The staff was lovely and very patient with our children. Located on a quiet block but close to restaurants, gelato and a popular square with coffee shops and convenience store nearby.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Sweet Harmony by Xarm Hotels
Minca, Magdalena

Small eco-hotel located on the side of a mountain, down a narrow unpaved road (an interesting drive up the road in a van!). We stayed in 2 deluxe rooms which were comfortable, though not air conditioned but do have fans and sleeping was comfortable since the temperatures cool down overnight. The drawback was that there are no screens to prevent bugs entering and one bed did not have a mosquito net. We got a lot of bug bites in Minca! The breakfast was delicious and staff was kind (though a little slow with service). The pool/hot tub situation was lacking but there was easy access to a beautiful river where we spent a lot of time. About a 10 minute walk into town which was easy/fine. The evening restaurant was closed while we were there but they offered options to order from restaurants for delivery, but we opted to just walk into town. Overall, our experience was fine for a brief stay in a small town. Would not stay here if expecting/requiring a luxury experience.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Ecohotel Piedemonte

We stayed in the 2-story family cabin, located up a hill from the main hotel area. There were a lot of steps which would be difficult for anyone with mobility issues, but fine for our crew. Downstairs was a small kitchenette/living area and small bathroom. Upstairs was an open space with 3 beds to accommodate our family of 5. There was a lot of outdoor space which was great for our kids. No air conditioning but comfortable sleeping conditions with the windows open since the temperatures cooled off at night. I do not recommend this place if you are uncomfortable with the occasional spider or insect - we encountered a couple during our stay since the cabin is not air tight and we kept the windows open most of the time (but not a huge deal for us). Bring bug repellant for mosquitos at dusk, but otherwise biting insects were not bad. Staff was lovely, breakfast was delicious and served in the garden next to a small creek. Coffee was plentiful and self serve, which we appreciated. We loved hanging out with the resident golden retriever. Location was about a 10 minute drive into Salento, but Uber worked well there or the hotel will call you a taxi - cost was around $5USD per way. There are a few restaurants and a river for swimming within walking distance as well (about 10 minutes down the road).

Authenticity & Character
Location
Located outside of town which resulted in a quiet and peaceful experience, but does require a drive to reach Salento
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Feb 26, 2024

Hi Dana,
great to hear that your family had such a wonderful time in Colombia! It was a joy for our whole team to assist your family. I'm especially glad that the guides provided a local perspective, giving you insights into the country and culture. It's fantastic to hear that the transfers were seamless.
Your positive feedback means a lot to us. If there's ever another Colombia adventure on the horizon, we'd be thrilled to assist you. Safe travels and warm regards!
Best,
Michael & The Chaska Tours Team

Our 14 day trip to Colombia was fantastic!Mi...
Colombia | Feb 7 - Feb 21, 2024

Shelly
Shelly N.
Sartell, MN | Reviewed on Feb 22, 2024
Our 14 day trip to Colombia was fantastic!
Michael helped us plan an awesome itinerary that was filled with adventure. Our local guides were so much fun to meet. Maylin in Bogotá was so kind and knowledgeable. We really did a lot in one day. Bogotá far exceeded my expectations! While in the Amazon, Yair showed us true adventures including monkeys, sloths, dolphins and even an anaconda!! Salento and the Cocora Valley was truly beautiful. Carlos knew a lot about the flora and fauna and was...
Read more

Our 14 day trip to Colombia was fantastic!
Michael helped us plan an awesome itinerary that was filled with adventure. Our local guides were so much fun to meet. Maylin in Bogotá was so kind and knowledgeable. We really did a lot in one day. Bogotá far exceeded my expectations! While in the Amazon, Yair showed us true adventures including monkeys, sloths, dolphins and even an anaconda!! Salento and the Cocora Valley was truly beautiful. Carlos knew a lot about the flora and fauna and was considerate in bringing me walking sticks! Tayrona National Park is really cool ( actually hot and humid!!), with monkeys, blue tailed lizards and toads. You can hear the howler monkeys as you trek through the jungle ...all pointed out by our kind and helpful guide, José. A refreshing swim in the Caribbean and then a beachside lunch is a wonderful way to cool off before the hike back. Jaime was our delightful guide around the Victoria Coffee farm and waterfalls. We also had a really good lunch with her.
Our driver for several occasions was Juan Carlos. He took us from the airport in Santa Marta to Tayrona to Minca and all around that area and then on a 4+ hour drive to Cartagena! He stopped for photos and brought us bottles of cold water! He drove very safe and we felt very secure on the very curvy mountain roads of Minca.
While seeing Cartagena, Evelyn, with her fun and spirited personality, took us around showing us history and where to find the best shopping and restaurants.
Our hotels were really nice. The drivers were on time and EVERYTHING went according to schedule. We could not have planned such a fantastic vacation on our own. We felt like VIPS and realized our private tours seemed to far surpass any of the others we saw or heard about. No regrets. A trip of a lifetime for sure! Thank you once again, Michael Gold!!

Hotel Reviews
Hotel Muisca
Bogotá

Really unique. So old and interesting. Breakfast was good. Slightly noisy for sleep due to the way the hotel was set up. Still, we enjoyed it

Authenticity & Character
Super quaint, interesting architecture. Old-time European feeling.
Location
Great for sightseeing
Staff
Main reception was fine
Cleanliness & Comfort
Clean, small rooms. Fine.
Waira Suites
Leticia

Clean, modern feel. Pools looked tempting, but we didn't have a chance to use them. Restaurant staff was fun and friendly.

Authenticity & Character
Nothing to be improved upon, just not super interesting
Location
Seemed very central for our needs. Easy access.
Staff
Friendly restaurant staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Clean and fresh
La Ceiba Amazonas

Really rustic, but what would you expect in the Amazon?!

Authenticity & Character
Simple, rustic. Has what you need. Great private decks! Liked the communal meals to meet new people
Location
In MI aqua, an indigenous pueblo
Staff
Friendly
Cleanliness & Comfort
Beds, bath were fine.
Salento Plaza

Clean, delightful breakfasts

Authenticity & Character
Cute outdoor area with lots of plants, beautiful sunsets
Location
Near everything in town
Staff
Restaurant staff especially kind
Cleanliness & Comfort
Rooms were nice, not so private as everyone can walk by and see right into your ( bed) room
Senda Koguiwa
Santa Marta

Absolutely beautiful! Awesome balcony! Awesome lobby and grounds, and pool. This was the highlight hotel of our trip. The little monkeys at breakfast were a fun surprise as well as walking along the river. Also swam in the pool, had cocktails and massages. Great!!

Authenticity & Character
Great
Location
Beautiful
Staff
Nice
Cleanliness & Comfort
Mundo Nuevo Eco Lodge
Santa Marta

The grounds her were beautiful. Our actual rooms were OK.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Beautiful
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Rooms were small, up a steep hill. Lots of rules. We wanted to dry our towels before travel the next day, but not allowed to.
Hotel Casa Tere
Cartagena

Mixed feelings here. Hotel has great potential with current downfalls such as poor breakfast choices and service. Room was small with 2 double beds. Did not look like the photo.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Good location
Staff
Restaurant staff person was very unhelpful and unattentive . Just poorly managed breakfast. Cheap pillows, blankets. We were fine, just seemed lacking compared to our other stays.
Cleanliness & Comfort
Could be improved if they tried.
Activity Reviews
Bogota's Essentials (City Tour & Monserrate)
Bogota's Essentials (City Tour & Monserrate)
Bogotá

Awesome, learned SO much from Maylin. She did a super job.

Quality of Experience
So many places covered in one day!
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Well educated and spoke great English .
Transport
No issues
Flora & Fauna in the Amazon (4d/3n)
Flora & Fauna in the Amazon (4d/3n)
Leticia and Puerto Nariño

Our guide added specialists to each area, for example to the monkey/ primate trek; to the Sloth trek in Peru.

Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Got to see an anaconda!!
Transport
Cocora Valley & Salento
Cocora Valley & Salento
Colombia

I was glad I requested the hiking poles for this trek. It was so beautiful!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Very careful drivers
Transport
Open Jeep Ride was really fun, especially to the coffee farm!
Coffee Farm Tour in Finca Buenos Aires
Coffee Farm Tour in Finca Buenos Aires
Salento

Very interesting, beautiful countryside. My favorite views of Colombia!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
The driver from Peoria to Salento was not as friendly as most. From Salento to Peoria, REALLY FRIENDLY!
Transport
Hike Tayrona National Park
Hike Tayrona National Park
Tayrona National Park

Seeing the animals was awesome

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Jose and Jose were great!
Transport
Nature, Waterfalls & Coffee Farm in Minca
Nature, Waterfalls & Coffee Farm in Minca
Colombia

Loved spending time with Jaime. She is a real gem!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Jaime and Juan Carlos are so nice!
Transport
Juan is an excellent and very consciousness driver.
Cartagena City Tour
Cartagena City Tour
Cartagena

Fun time checking out the historical and current stats of the city.

Quality of Experience
Evelyn was fun and spirited! Great tips on shopping!
Quality of Experience
Evelyn was fun and spirited! Great tips on shopping!
Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Long drive from Minka to Cartagena. Interesting to see the non tourist cities.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Long drive from Minka to Cartagena. Interesting to see the non tourist cities.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Long drive from Minka to Cartagena. Interesting to see the non tourist cities.
Transport
Juan Carlos is a great driver.
Transport
Juan Carlos is a great driver.
Transport
Juan Carlos is a great driver.
Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Feb 29, 2024
Dear Shelly and Rod,
Thank you so much for your heartfelt and wonderful review! It was an absolute pleasure planning and sharing in your Colombian adventure.
I'm thrilled to hear that you enjoyed the diverse experiences and I'm glad you found the Amazon and Tayrona National Park to be a wonderful experience with the company of the wildlife.
Your kind words about feeling like VIPs and the seamless execution of the itinerary are the best compliments for us. It was our pleasure to ensure...
Read more

Dear Shelly and Rod,
Thank you so much for your heartfelt and wonderful review! It was an absolute pleasure planning and sharing in your Colombian adventure.
I'm thrilled to hear that you enjoyed the diverse experiences and I'm glad you found the Amazon and Tayrona National Park to be a wonderful experience with the company of the wildlife.
Your kind words about feeling like VIPs and the seamless execution of the itinerary are the best compliments for us. It was our pleasure to ensure everything went smoothly.
I'm honored to have been part of creating a trip of a lifetime for you both. Thank you once again for choosing our services and your detailed trip report. Wishing you many more adventures ahead!
Warm regards,
Michael and the Chaska Tours Team

A Wonderful Experience Traveling in Columbia
Colombia | Jan 16 - Feb 1, 2024

Daisy
Daisy L.
Seattle, WA | Reviewed on Feb 04, 2024
From the planning to the execution, working with Michael and team was been a pleasure. Before we left, Michael responded to every question promptly and patiently. While we were in Columbia, every driver was courteous and on time, and every guide was knowledgeable and friendly. Our lodgings were all comfortable and in excellent locations. Columbia is a beautiful country, and its people are kind and lovely. Thank you for helping us enjoy this wonderful place! Read more

From the planning to the execution, working with Michael and team was been a pleasure. Before we left, Michael responded to every question promptly and patiently. While we were in Columbia, every driver was courteous and on time, and every guide was knowledgeable and friendly. Our lodgings were all comfortable and in excellent locations. Columbia is a beautiful country, and its people are kind and lovely. Thank you for helping us enjoy this wonderful place!

Hotel Reviews
Casa Legado
Bogota

Beautiful hotel, great location, outstanding service. Clearly lots of thought put into the design of the hotel to make it not only lovely, but comfortable for guests.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Quinta Ladera
Medellin
Authenticity & Character
Location
Great location. Easy walking distance to all the shops and restaurants in Provenza, but nestled on a quiet block--the best of both worlds!
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Sofitel Baru Calablanca
Cartagena

We had an exceptional stay at the Sofitel Calablanca. The property is beautiful. All rooms are lovely, have spectacular Caribbean views, and are beautifully decorated. The food at all the restaurants was excellent. But, what makes this place truly exceptional is the service. Every member of the staff is well-trained, kind, friendly, and focused on the customer experience. We took the high speed boat from Cartegena to the hotel. Fun experience and so much faster than taking a car service back! One note...while the beach at this hotel is lovely and quiet, it is not the "white sand" of Playa Blanca on Isla Baru, which was a slight disappointment. The beach is pretty gravelly--I'm guessing the jungle originally came right down to the beach (as it does on either side of the property), and when Sofitel developed the property, they dredged the coastline and brought in sand. We wanted to avoid crowds, so this did not diminish our enjoyment of the property, but if you are looking for soft white sand gently sloping into the ocean, that is not what this beach offers.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Medellín Transformation Tour
Medellín Transformation Tour
Medellín

Absolute highlight. The guide was excellent, and really helped us understand Medellin's unique history, and all that has been accomplished in the last 15 years. Loved taking the authentic experience of taking the metro system and the gondolas around town.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Bogota's Essentials (City Tour & Monserrate)
Bogota's Essentials (City Tour & Monserrate)
Bogotá
Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Daytrip: Silletera Culture in Santa Elena & La Piedra de Guatapé
Daytrip: Silletera Culture in Santa Elena & La Piedra de Guatapé
Medellín

Great day. We really enjoyed and learned a lot at the flower farm (the gentleman who hosted us there was delightful!). We were a bit surprised (honestly disappointed) at how commercial Guatape was, but very much enjoyed the drive and the view from the top. The walk through the town afterwards was fun as well.

Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Streetfood & Market Experience
Streetfood & Market Experience
Medellín

We enjoyed going to the market, and trying the fresh Arepas con Chocolo (literally right off the grill). Otherwise, we're not big juice drinkers, and perhaps we are just not big fans of street food in Columbia.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Dinner-Experience: Social Colombian Food
Dinner-Experience: Social Colombian Food
Bogotá

We didn't really understand what this was until we arrived that evening. While the food was okay (honestly, it might just be that we don't love traditional Columbian food, which doesn't use very many spices), we really enjoyed the young woman who hosts this experience. She was a fascinating person with great ideas and observations about food, culture, and Columbia.

Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Feb 05, 2024

Dear Daisy,
Your kind words have truly made our day! It was a pleasure planning and accompanying your journey. Colombia is indeed a beautiful country, and we're honored to have played a part in helping you enjoy its wonders. We are really happy that you have had such a good time in our homecountry.
Hasta pronto,
The Chaska Tours Team

COLUMBIA TRIP BY DAVID AND AIMEE
Colombia | Jan 4 - Jan 10, 2024

D
David D.
Holualoa, HI | Reviewed on Jan 23, 2024

The most impressive thing about Michael is that his response time was extremely timely and good.

He was able to secure a great bird guide for my in Tyrona National park. The guide will make or break a birding trip.

I would highly recommend Michael to help organize a trip to Columbia.

Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Jan 23, 2024

Dear David and Aimee,
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your feedback! I'm thrilled to hear that you had a great experience with the bird guide in Tayrona National Park. Your recommendation means a lot, and I'm delighted to have been a part of organizing your trip to Colombia. If you have any more adventures in mind or need assistance in the future, feel free to reach out. Safe travels!
Best regards,
Michael

The most amazing experience in Colombia
Colombia | Dec 10 - Jan 16, 2024

William
William L.
United Kingdom | Reviewed on Jan 21, 2024
We're still absolutely blown away by our incredible trip to Colombia. It's an amazing, friendly, beautiful, adventurous, exciting, safe and super-friendly country and we loved every minute of our time there.
And the main reason for that is the wonderful service we received from Michael at Chaska Tours, who from our very first enquiry in March 2023, to our eventual arrival in Colombia in Dec 2023 was on hand with suggestions, advice and a friendly approach - nothing was too much...
Read more

We're still absolutely blown away by our incredible trip to Colombia. It's an amazing, friendly, beautiful, adventurous, exciting, safe and super-friendly country and we loved every minute of our time there.
And the main reason for that is the wonderful service we received from Michael at Chaska Tours, who from our very first enquiry in March 2023, to our eventual arrival in Colombia in Dec 2023 was on hand with suggestions, advice and a friendly approach - nothing was too much trouble!
And then from the minutewe set foot in Colombia, and throughout our entire five weeks exploring, Michael and the Chaska team took care of everything - all our transfers, guides, accommodation and excursions - in the most professional and efficient way imaginable.
We couldn't have seen, done, experienced and met everyone and everything we did without their help, and it was fantastic.
Thanks so much for everything... we will remember this trip for a very long time!

Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Jan 22, 2024
Dear William and Coman,
Thank you so much for your enthusiastic review! We are thrilled to hear that your trip to Colombia was truly unforgettable. It was a pleasure assisting you, providing suggestions, advice, and a friendly approach throughout.
We're delighted that you enjoyed the beauty, friendliness, adventure and excitement that Colombia has to offer. Our goal is to make your stay as seamless and enjoyable as possible, and we are glad to know that we could contribute to your positive...
Read more

Dear William and Coman,
Thank you so much for your enthusiastic review! We are thrilled to hear that your trip to Colombia was truly unforgettable. It was a pleasure assisting you, providing suggestions, advice, and a friendly approach throughout.
We're delighted that you enjoyed the beauty, friendliness, adventure and excitement that Colombia has to offer. Our goal is to make your stay as seamless and enjoyable as possible, and we are glad to know that we could contribute to your positive experience.
We appreciate your recognition of the professional and efficient organization of your transfers, guides, accommodations, and excursions during your entire five weeks in Colombia. It was an honor to help you explore all the wonderful places, gather experiences, and meet new people. It was great to see you in person in San Agustín and I've really enjoyed our conversations!
Thank you for your appreciation and trust. We hope the memories of your trip to Colombia stay with you for the rest of your life. If you plan more Colombian adventures in the future, we would be more than happy to assist you again.
Thank you and all the best!
Warm regards,
Michael and the Chaska Tours Team

A great option to complement your holiday planning
Colombia | Dec 26 - Jan 5, 2024

Margarita
Margarita V.
San Jose, CA | Reviewed on Jan 17, 2024
My husband and I booked our family trip (with our 5 year old son) to Colombia about 6 weeks from our travel date and needed to work rather quickly to determine our itinerary, especially as we were traveling during the busy winter holidays. We did a quick search of itineraries for Medellin and Cartagena and came across KimKim. While we usually prefer to do our own research and planning, we decided we would try out an agency given the timing and convenience and since we didn’t know much about... Read more

My husband and I booked our family trip (with our 5 year old son) to Colombia about 6 weeks from our travel date and needed to work rather quickly to determine our itinerary, especially as we were traveling during the busy winter holidays. We did a quick search of itineraries for Medellin and Cartagena and came across KimKim. While we usually prefer to do our own research and planning, we decided we would try out an agency given the timing and convenience and since we didn’t know much about Colombia. Michael was extremely responsive, flexible and helpful during our planning. We started with an all-inclusive trip to understand the cost and options, and then scaled back once we had a better understanding of what KimKim could provide. We went back to Michael with more questions and changes, and each time he returned our message within hours or at the ½ day at the most. While we knew we were going to pay a premium (likely twice what you would pay to do on your own), we were really happy with the service and recommendations we received. For the days we weren’t using KimKim, we were offered recommendations for restaurants and other activities that we could explore on our own which we found helpful. Additionally, we felt as if we had someone on the ground who could help answer questions along the way should they come up. We were very scheduled (our choice) and at one point we decided to cancel an activity the night before due to our child feeling sick. Michael immediately offered other options and ideas, for which we were grateful - ultimately decided that it was a sunk cost and were happy with our itinerary and to take it easy. We were also glad that we booked private excursions and it was a relief not to have to think about all of the daily logistics. If we had one suggestion it might be to update travel times for some of the excursions e.g. in Santa Marta there was a lot of traffic and the travel times were about double than expected. We would definitely recommend KimKim if you want the luxury of not having to think about anything yourself and have a little peace of mind. We were very satisfied with our experience working with Michael!

Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Jan 17, 2024

Dear Margarita,
Thank you for your wonderful feedback! We're thrilled you enjoyed your family trip to Colombia and found our services responsive and flexible. Our goal is to provide high-quality, private tours with meticulous planning.
We appreciate your understanding regarding travel times, as they can be affected by unforeseen circumstances. Your satisfaction with our service, recommendations, and private excursions is our priority.
Should you plan future travels to Colombia, we'd be honored to assist again.
Best regards,
Michael and the Chaska Tours Team

The trip was amazing. Michael did a fantastic job in planning a full Colombian experience for us!
Colombia | Dec 14 - Dec 28, 2023

B
Ben M.
Lacey, WA | Reviewed on Jan 04, 2024

The trip was amazing. Michael did a fantastic job to patiently work through the trip planning and he got it right! I appreciated the variety of the trip and the flexibility when we wanted to make last minute changes.

Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Jan 04, 2024

Hi Ben,
Thank you so much for your feedback! It's fabulous to hear that you had an amazing trip and that the planning process met your expectations. It was my pleasure to work with you and accommodate any last-minute changes. If you ever plan another adventure in Colombia, don't hesitate to reach out. Safe travels!
Best regards,
Michael & The Chaska Tours Team

Amazing trip to Colombia!
Colombia | Dec 18 - Dec 26, 2023

L
Lindsay K.
Shaw, DC | Reviewed on Jan 04, 2024
We had an amazing 9 day trip to Colombia. Michael was very responsive and everything went off with no problems. Read more

We had an amazing 9 day trip to Colombia. Michael was very responsive and everything went off with no problems.

Hotel Review
Hotel Bosques del Saman Alcala
Alcala - Filandia

We did not enjoy this hotel or the location of the hotel. It needs some updating and is very far from most of the tourist things. Breakfast was pretty good but there were very few healthy dinner options for Vegetarians.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Medellín Transformation Tour
Medellín Transformation Tour
Medellín

We loved this tour! It showed us so much of the city.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Streetfood & Market Experience
Streetfood & Market Experience
Medellín

We loved trying all the fruits and vegetables as well as the yummy street food. We were able to understand the food culture and try new things.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Local specialist: Michael Gold
Michael
Michael Gold
Local specialist in San Agustín, Huila, Colombia | Replied on Jan 04, 2024
Dear Lindsay,
Thank you so much for your feedback! I'm happy to hear that you had an amazing family trip to Colombia and that everything went smoothly.
I'm sorry to hear that Hotel Bosques del Saman Alcala didn't meet your expectations. I'll make a note of your comments and I'll let them know about your suggestions.
On a positive note, I'm thrilled that you enjoyed the tours in Medellín. It's great to hear that these experiences provided you with a deeper understanding of the city and its...
Read more

Dear Lindsay,
Thank you so much for your feedback! I'm happy to hear that you had an amazing family trip to Colombia and that everything went smoothly.
I'm sorry to hear that Hotel Bosques del Saman Alcala didn't meet your expectations. I'll make a note of your comments and I'll let them know about your suggestions.
On a positive note, I'm thrilled that you enjoyed the tours in Medellín. It's great to hear that these experiences provided you with a deeper understanding of the city and its food culture.
Your feedback is valuable, and we'll use it to enhance the experience for future travelers. If you have any more detailed comments or suggestions, please feel free to share.
I hope you have wonderful memories from your time in Colombia, and if you ever plan another trip, I'd be more than happy to assist.
Best regards,
Michael & The Chaska Team