Profile photo for Rafaja Hanna Bertele
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Rafaja Hanna Bertele

I started working in tourism more than seven years after finishing me degree in history and spanish language in Germany. My responsivities within the agency include travel planning as well as tour guidance throughout the country. For me it is the perfect combination, because me experiences traveling around the country let me to life the travel experience first hand. So part of my time I'm in the office and the other time out in the field. Even though I have traveled a lot through the country, there is always something new to discover and it is always exciting. I was particularly impressed by the Caribbean, which is why I also declared the colonial city of Cartagena my new home.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"I plan and organize trips throughout the whole country. The best is a good mix of city trips, nature, beach and culture. I personally recommend to focus on nature, as Colombia is the second country with the highest level of biodiversity. The best way to connect to nature is through hiking or trekking in one of the many national parks, this where my specialty lies. Colombia has so much more to offer than the beaten track, so I really like to be challenged with special requests and uncommon destinations, such as the Llanos or Amazonas region. I am also an expert for the Caribbean coast, because this where I have been living during the last seven years."

How did you get involved in travel?

"Seven years ago, when I first traveled to Colombia for a semester abroad, the country's tourism office was advertising with the slogan "The only risk is that you want to stay". I probably took this sentence a little too serious, because from the first day I fell in love with this fascinating, vibrant, colorful and contrasting country and I stayed."

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"One of my many unique travel experiences in Colombia was a few years ago at the pacific coast in Colombia during the whale season. At the first approach by plane to the municipy Nuqui the locals where already pointing the location of some whales by their water fountains. After arrival at a beautiful Ecohotel we went out by boat and after a while a humpback whale jumped out right next to the boat, I had goose bumps all over. But that was not the end of the show, a few minutes later the whale jumped again. The boat driver said ok, let’s go back, but then the whale jumped again and again. At the end we counted six jumps, even the local where impressed."

Rafaja Hanna is part of the following groups: Colombia Travel Agents
Beautiful Cartagena
Best of Colombia: Bogotá, Medellín & Cartagena - 9 Days

Explore three of Colombia's most exciting cities on this 9-day adventure. Start in Bogotá, the sprawling cosmopolitan capital. Tour the colonial streets of the historic center, taste local cuisine, and visit museums. Then, transfer to Medellín to see street art and communal projects, and learn about Colombian coffee culture. The adventure ends in tropical Cartagena, where you'll appreciate Spanish forts and architecture, enjoy fresh seafood, and swim in the Caribbean.

Street Market in Cartagena
Explore Colombia's Cities and Nature - 11 Days

This tour combines Colombia's vibrant cities of  Bogotá, Medellín, and Cartagena with trips to colorful villages like Guatapé, a hike to La Pierda Rock, and a beach day on Barú Island. Visit unique sites such as the Salt Cathedral in Zipaquirá, the views atop Monserrate Hill, and the port city of Santa Marta, which is known as the first Spanish settlement in the country. Relax at a 5-star wellness hotel for a day at the spa, and spend an afternoon exploring Cartagena's food scene inspired by the literary works of Gabriel García Márquez.

Cartagena
How Many Days Should You Spend in Cartagena?

To visit Cartagena is to step back in time to the days of conquistadores and colonialists. Even in a mere 24 hours you could experience this spirit on a tour of Cartagena's historic Walled City, plus enjoy a carriage ride along its cobbled streets. With a couple days you could laze on white-sand beaches and tour its famous castles, and with close to a week there are options for day trips to gorgeous Caribbean islands and protected national parks. Keep reading for all the details.

The colorful architecture of Cartagena
Explore Bogotá, Medellín, and Cartagena - 8 Days

On this eight-day excursion, you'll visit Bogotá, the largest city in Colombia and a melting pot of people from around the country. Travel to Medellín and see with your own eyes how it's transformed from one of the most dangerous cities to a fascinating destination. Then explore Cartagena, the jewel of the Caribbean ocean, and go on a trip to the beautiful beaches and islands nearby.  

Tayrona National Park
Colombia Highlights: Bogotá, Coffee Region, Medellín & Cartagena - 14 Days

This journey begins in Bogotá, a melting pot of people from around the country. You'll then head to a nearby small town to witness a spectacular salt cathedral, one of Colombia's most visited attractions. Afterward, head east to the Coffee Region where you'll tour small towns, visit a coffee farm, and see the tallest wax palm trees in the world. The adventure continues in Medellín, Tayrona National Park, and Cartagena.

A view of the islands of near Cartagena.
Cartagena and Colombia's Islands - 7 Days

Explore some of the best destinations along Colombia's northern coast on this 7-day adventure that combines a fast-paced urban adventure with the relaxing allure of a tropical island retreat. Tour the colorful Caribbean jewel of Cartegena, then head to a personalized island escape where you can recharge. For travelers who can't choose between an active trip and a secluded getaway, this itinerary offers the best of both worlds.

Recent trip reviews for Rafaja Hanna

So glad we used this service! · Colombia - Dec 31 - Jan 9, 2022

Traveler: Grace G. - Local specialist: Rafaja Hanna Bertele

So glad we used this service! COVID had really taken a lot of the fun out of planning trips since there was so much uncertainty and so many restrictions to keep track of. Rafaja's team made it so easy. We knew very little about Colombia coming in to the trip planning and Rafaja was so patient as we honed in on what we wanted and made recommendations that we never could have come up with on our own. A great example was when we went to the Pacific coast and people kept asking us how we... read more

So glad we used this service! COVID had really taken a lot of the fun out of planning trips since there was so much uncertainty and so many restrictions to keep track of. Rafaja's team made it so easy. We knew very little about Colombia coming in to the trip planning and Rafaja was so patient as we honed in on what we wanted and made recommendations that we never could have come up with on our own. A great example was when we went to the Pacific coast and people kept asking us how we found out about the place since they never see people from the United States there. In addition to all the planning assistance, everything was seamless as we were traveling as well and it was easy to continue communication with Rafaja's team. With all the ideas and resources Rafaja provided we could easily do many more trips to Colombia!

Rafaja Hanna Bertele profile photo
Rafaja Hanna Bertele, local specialist, responded to this review:

Thank you so much for this wonderful feedback and thank you for traveling to Colombia. Wishing you all the best!

Jamie

Mother-Daughter memories in Cartagena · Colombia - Jun 12 - Jun 18, 2021

Traveler: Jamie L. - Local specialist: Rafaja Hanna Bertele

My 16 year old daughter & I took a trip to Cartagena, Colombia this past summer. I was a little nervous about a trip like this with just us , but the help planning & the tips that I was given from Rafaja made the trip amazing.

Rafaja helped us arrange a walking tour of the city with our amazing guide Will, a trip to Rosario Islands, a mother-daughter photography session in our favorite part of town(Getsemani) and a fishing trip that we couldn't go on due to my food sickness. Our favorite... read more

My 16 year old daughter & I took a trip to Cartagena, Colombia this past summer. I was a little nervous about a trip like this with just us , but the help planning & the tips that I was given from Rafaja made the trip amazing.

Rafaja helped us arrange a walking tour of the city with our amazing guide Will, a trip to Rosario Islands, a mother-daughter photography session in our favorite part of town(Getsemani) and a fishing trip that we couldn't go on due to my food sickness. Our favorite part was the walking tour as Will was knowledgeable & passionate about his city, and he was also friendly & funny. I highly recommend the photographer Rafael that was arranged-he captured some fabulous images.

Because our experience was so good, I'm currently in the process of arranging my second Mother-Daughter trip with KimKim-as much as I'd love to visit Colombia again, we are heading to Nicaragua this time.

Rafaja Hanna Bertele profile photo
Rafaja Hanna Bertele, local specialist, responded to this review:

Jamie, thank you so much for this review :) Wishing you all the best!

A great trip. Very professional and friendly ... · Colombia - Jul 14 - Aug 7, 2021

Traveler: Will M. - Local specialist: Rafaja Hanna Bertele

A great trip. Very professional and friendly guides, drivers etc. Hotels of high standard.
Can thoroughly recommend Chasko.
Was a bit wary of the online aspect of your set up but am very happy to have a had a very good experience all the way through.
Will be in touch for future travels in South and Central America.

Rafaja Hanna Bertele profile photo
Rafaja Hanna Bertele, local specialist, responded to this review:

Thank you Will for coming to Colombia. Looking very much forward receiving you again soon.
All the best,
Rafaja and the Chaska tours Team